This chapter describes the fundamental types for input and output in .NET, with emphasis on the following topics:
The .NET stream architecture and how it provides a consistent programming interface for reading and writing across a variety of I/O types
Classes for manipulating files and directories on disk
Specialized streams for compression, named pipes and memory-mapped files.
This chapter concentrates on the types in the
System.IO namespace, the
home of lower-level I/O functionality. The .NET Framework also provides
higher-level I/O functionality in the form of SQL connections and commands,
LINQ to SQL and LINQ to XML, Windows Communication Foundation, Web Services,
The .NET stream architecture centers on three concepts: backing stores, decorators, and adapters, as shown in Figure 15-1.
Figure 15-1. Stream architecture
A backing store is the endpoint that makes input and output useful, such as a file or network connection. Precisely, it is either or both of the following:
A source from which bytes can be sequentially read
A destination to which bytes can be sequentially written
A backing store is of no use, though, unless exposed to the
Stream is the standard .NET class for this purpose; it exposes a standard set of methods for reading, writing, and positioning. Unlike an array, where all the backing data exists in ...