C# – serialize a C# Type object


I'm trying to serialize a Type object in the following way:

Type myType = typeof (StringBuilder);
var serializer = new XmlSerializer(typeof(Type));
TextWriter writer = new StringWriter();
serializer.Serialize(writer, myType);

When I do this, the call to Serialize throws the following exception:

"The type System.Text.StringBuilder was not expected. Use the
XmlInclude or SoapInclude attribute to specify types that are not
known statically."

Is there a way for me to serialize the Type object? Note that I am not trying to serialize the StringBuilder itself, but the Type object containing the metadata about the StringBuilder class.

Best Solution

I wasn't aware that a Type object could be created with only a string containing the fully-qualified name. To get the fully qualified name, you can use the following:

string typeName = typeof (StringBuilder).FullName;

You can then persist this string however needed, then reconstruct the type like this:

Type t = Type.GetType(typeName);

If you need to create an instance of the type, you can do this:

object o = Activator.CreateInstance(t);

If you check the value of o.GetType(), it will be StringBuilder, just as you would expect.