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VB Variant Data Type

The variant data type can be used to define variables that contain any type of data. A tag is stored with the variant data to identify the type of data that it currently contains. You can examine the tag by using the VarType function.

A variant can contain a value of any of the types listed in Table 5.

Table 5.  Variant Value Types
Size of Data

0  (Empty)



1  Null



2  Integer

2 bytes (short)

-32768 to 32767

3  Long

4 bytes (long)

-2.147E9 to 2.147E9

4  Single

4 bytes (float)

-3.402E38 to -1.401E-45 (negative)

1.401E-45 to 3.402E38 (positive)

5  Double

8 bytes (double)

-1.797E308 to -4.94E-324 (negative)

4.94E-324 to 1.797E308 (positive)

6  Currency

8 bytes (fixed)

-9.223E14 to 9.223E14

7  Date

8 bytes (double)

Jan 1st, 100 to Dec 31st, 9999

8  String

up to 2GB

Length is limited by the amount of random access memory, up to 2 GB

9  Object



A newly defined Variant defaults to being of Empty type to signify that it contains no initialized data. An Empty Variant is converted to zero when used in a numeric expression, or to an empty string when used in a string expression. To test whether a variant is uninitialized (empty), use the IsEmpty function.

Null variants have no associated data and serve only to represent invalid or ambiguous results. You can test whether a variant contains a null value with the IsNull function. Null is not the same as Empty, which indicates that a variant has not yet been initialized.

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