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Check whether a string is not null and not empty

Posted by: admin November 2, 2017 Leave a comment

Questions:

How can I check whether a string is not null and not empty?

public void doStuff(String str)
{
    if (str != null && str != "**here I want to check the 'str' is empty or not**")
    {
        /* handle empty string */
    }
    /* ... */
}
Answers:

What about isEmpty() ?

if(str != null && !str.isEmpty())

Be sure to use the parts of && in this order, because java will not proceed to evaluate the second part if the first part of && fails, thus ensuring you will not get a null pointer exception from str.isEmpty() if str is null.

Beware, it’s only available since Java SE 1.6. You have to check str.length() == 0 on previous versions.


To ignore whitespace as well:

if(str != null && !str.trim().isEmpty())

Wrapped in a handy function:

public static boolean empty( final String s ) {
  // Null-safe, short-circuit evaluation.
  return s == null || s.trim().isEmpty();
}

Becomes:

if( !empty( str ) )

Questions:
Answers:

Use org.apache.commons.lang.StringUtils

I like to use Apache commons-lang for these kinds of things, and especially the StringUtils utility class:

import org.apache.commons.lang.StringUtils;

if (StringUtils.isNotBlank(str)) {
    ...
} 

if (StringUtils.isBlank(str)) {
    ...
} 

Questions:
Answers:

Just adding Android in here:

import android.text.TextUtils;

if (!TextUtils.isEmpty(str)) {
...
}

Questions:
Answers:

To add to @BJorn and @SeanPatrickFloyd The Guava way to do this is:

Strings.nullToEmpty(str).isEmpty(); 
// or
Strings.isNullOrEmpty(str);

Commons Lang is more readable at times but I have been slowly relying more on Guava plus sometimes Commons Lang is confusing when it comes to isBlank() (as in what is whitespace or not).

Guava’s version of Commons Lang isBlank would be:

Strings.nullToEmpty(str).trim().isEmpty()

I will say code that doesn’t allow "" (empty) AND null is suspicious and potentially buggy in that it probably doesn’t handle all cases where is not allowing null makes sense (although for SQL I can understand as SQL/HQL is weird about '').

Questions:
Answers:
str != null && str.length() != 0

alternatively

str != null && !str.equals("")

or

str != null && !"".equals(str)

Note: The second check (first and second alternatives) assumes str is not null. It’s ok only because the first check is doing that (and Java doesn’t does the second check if the first is false)!

IMPORTANT: DON’T use == for string equality. == checks the pointer is equal, not the value. Two strings can be in different memory addresses (two instances) but have the same value!

Questions:
Answers:

This works for me:

import com.google.common.base.Strings;

if (!Strings.isNullOrEmpty(myString)) {
       return myString;
}

Returns true if the given string is null or is the empty string.

Consider normalizing your string references with nullToEmpty. If you
do, you can use String.isEmpty() instead of this method, and you won’t
need special null-safe forms of methods like String.toUpperCase
either. Or, if you’d like to normalize “in the other direction,”
converting empty strings to null, you can use emptyToNull.

Questions:
Answers:

Almost every library I know defines a utility class called StringUtils, StringUtil or StringHelper, and they usually include the method you are looking for.

My personal favorite is Apache Commons / Lang, where in the StringUtils class, you get both the

  1. StringUtils.isEmpty(String) and the
  2. StringUtils.isBlank(String) method

(The first checks whether a string is null or empty, the second checks whether it is null, empty or whitespace only)

There are similar utility classes in Spring, Wicket and lots of other libs. If you don’t use external libraries, you might want to introduce a StringUtils class in your own project.


Update: many years have passed, and these days I’d recommend using Guava‘s Strings.isNullOrEmpty(string) method.

Questions:
Answers:

How about:

if(str!= null && str.length() != 0 )

Questions:
Answers:

Use Apache StringUtils’ isNotBlank method like

StringUtils.isNotBlank(str)

It will return true only if the str is not null and is not empty.

Questions:
Answers:

If you don’t want to include the whole library; just include the code you want from it. You’ll have to maintain it yourself; but it’s a pretty straight forward function. Here it is copied from commons.apache.org

    /**
 * <p>Checks if a String is whitespace, empty ("") or null.</p>
 *
 * <pre>
 * StringUtils.isBlank(null)      = true
 * StringUtils.isBlank("")        = true
 * StringUtils.isBlank(" ")       = true
 * StringUtils.isBlank("bob")     = false
 * StringUtils.isBlank("  bob  ") = false
 * </pre>
 *
 * @param str  the String to check, may be null
 * @return <code>true</code> if the String is null, empty or whitespace
 * @since 2.0
 */
public static boolean isBlank(String str) {
    int strLen;
    if (str == null || (strLen = str.length()) == 0) {
        return true;
    }
    for (int i = 0; i < strLen; i++) {
        if ((Character.isWhitespace(str.charAt(i)) == false)) {
            return false;
        }
    }
    return true;
}

Questions:
Answers:

If you know the string you want to check against, you can use the following

if (!"mystring".equals(str)) { 
    /* your code here */ 
}

Questions:
Answers:

You should use org.apache.commons.lang3.StringUtils.isNotBlank() or org.apache.commons.lang3.StringUtils.isNotEmpty. The decision between these two is based on what you actually want to check for.

The isNotBlank() checks that the input parameter is:

  • not Null,
  • not the empty string (“”)
  • not a sequence of whitespace characters (” “)

The isNotEmpty() checks only that the input parameter is

  • not null
  • not the Empty String (“”)
Questions:
Answers:

It is a bit too late, but here is a functional style of checking:

Optional.ofNullable(str)
    .filter(s -> !(s.trim().isEmpty()))
    .ifPresent(result -> {
       // your query setup goes here
    });

Questions:
Answers:

As seanizer said above, Apache StringUtils is fantastic for this, if you were to include guava you should do the following;

public List<Employee> findEmployees(String str, int dep) {
 Preconditions.checkState(StringUtils.isNotBlank(str), "Invalid input, input is blank or null");
 /** code here **/
}

May I also recommend that you refer to the columns in your result set by name rather than by index, this will make your code much easier to maintain.

Questions:
Answers:

test equals with an empty string and null in the same conditional:

if(!"".equals(str) && str != null) {
    // do stuff.
}

Does not throws NullPointerException if str is null, since Object.equals() returns false if arg is null.

the other construct str.equals("") would throw the dreaded NullPointerException. Some might consider bad form using a String literal as the object upon wich equals() is called but it does the job.

Also check this answer: https://stackoverflow.com/a/531825/1532705

Questions:
Answers:

I’ve made my own utility function to check several strings at once, rather than having an if statement full of if(str != null && !str.isEmpty && str2 != null && !str2.isEmpty). This is the function:

public class StringUtils{

    public static boolean areSet(String... strings)
    {
        for(String s : strings)
            if(s == null || s.isEmpty)
                return false;

        return true;
    }   

}

so I can simply write:

if(!StringUtils.areSet(firstName,lastName,address)
{
    //do something
}

Questions:
Answers:

Just some small good practice if not just some syntax sugar (put the constant in front of the ==‘s and !=‘s).

if(null != str && !str.isEmpty())

Questions:
Answers:

You can use StringUtils.isEmpty(), It will result true if the string is either null or empty.

 String str1 = "";
 String str2 = null;

 if(StringUtils.isEmpty(str)){
     System.out.println("str1 is null or empty");
 }

 if(StringUtils.isEmpty(str2)){
     System.out.println("str2 is null or empty");
 }

will result in

str1 is null or empty

str2 is null or empty

Questions:
Answers:

I would advise Guava or Apache Commons according to your actual need. Check the different behaviors in my example code:

import com.google.common.base.Strings;
import org.apache.commons.lang.StringUtils;

/**
 * Created by hu0983 on 2016.01.13..
 */
public class StringNotEmptyTesting {
  public static void main(String[] args){
        String a = "  ";
        String b = "";
        String c=null;

    System.out.println("Apache:");
    if(!StringUtils.isNotBlank(a)){
        System.out.println(" a is blank");
    }
    if(!StringUtils.isNotBlank(b)){
        System.out.println(" b is blank");
    }
    if(!StringUtils.isNotBlank(c)){
        System.out.println(" c is blank");
    }
    System.out.println("Google:");

    if(Strings.isNullOrEmpty(Strings.emptyToNull(a))){
        System.out.println(" a is NullOrEmpty");
    }
    if(Strings.isNullOrEmpty(b)){
        System.out.println(" b is NullOrEmpty");
    }
    if(Strings.isNullOrEmpty(c)){
        System.out.println(" c is NullOrEmpty");
    }
  }
}

Result:
Apache:
a is blank
b is blank
c is blank
Google:
b is NullOrEmpty
c is NullOrEmpty

Questions:
Answers:

Simple solution :

private boolean stringNotEmptyOrNull(String st) {
    return st != null && !st.isEmpty();
}

Questions:
Answers:

For completeness: If you are already using the Spring framework, the StringUtils provide the method

org.springframework.util.StringUtils.hasLength(String str)

Returns:
true if the String is not null and has length

as well as the method

org.springframework.util.StringUtils.hasText(String str)

Returns:
true if the String is not null, its length is greater than 0, and it does not contain whitespace only

Questions:
Answers:

Simply, to ignore white space as well:

if (str == null || str.trim().length() == 0) {
    // str is empty
} else {
    // str is not empty
}

Questions:
Answers:

I fixed mine using this

if(user==null) {

}else if(user.isEmpty()) {

}else{
//code to run 
}

—–OR—–

if(user==null) {

}else if(user.length() == 0) {

}else{
//code to run 
}

—–OR—–

if(user==null) {

}else if(user.equals("")) {

}else{
//code to run 
}

Questions:
Answers:
String str="Nasir";

if(str.isEmpty()){
    System.out.println("string is empty");
}
else{
    System.out.println("string is not empty");
}