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Determining the number of new lines in a string


is there a way to determine the number of line breaks in a string. For example, I receive the content of a textarea and want to find out how many lines there is in the text.


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3 Answers

  • Posted on Dec 13, 2004 at 12:26 PM

    Hi Elvez,

    for line breaks can be Carriage Return, Line Feed, and a combination of both, the most simple way should be to create a StringTokenizer and count the tokens (ie lines):

    StringTokenizer strTok = new StringTokenizer(yourString, "/r/n");
    int nrOfLines = str.countTokens();

    Hope it helps & have a nice week


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  • Posted on Dec 13, 2004 at 12:27 PM

    Here is how you do it:

    StringTokenizer st = new StringTokenizer("string", "\n");

    int rows = st.countTokens();

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    • Former Member Detlev Beutner

      Hi Detlev,

      of course you're right and i'm ashamed. Must be the (attention! 1:1 translation) "glowing wine" in the "preXMas time".

      Thanks and best regards,


      PS: BTW, congratulations for being 2nd (and ahead of me) in the forum's top scorer list.

  • author's profile photo Former Member
    Former Member
    Posted on Dec 14, 2004 at 09:13 AM

    Java is generally designed to support non-hardcoding alternatives to this kind of approach.

    Instead of hardcoding (hardcoding baaad 😉 ) the carriage values into the code please at least try to use the following System property.


    This should work for most JVM supporting platforms and you shouldn't need to worry if someone decides one day to change the \r or \n to something different.

    If it doesn't work and you are sure that it is due to this then hardcode it instead.

    Btw. didn't the Point rewarding program already stop? I remember receiving a related e-mail about it that it deteriorated the quality of these forums.



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    • Hi Kalle,

      > by using the hardcoded method you suggest with a

      > valid, but limited point, you do bind the solution to

      > assume that the linefeed is one of these two (or their

      > combination).

      Yes - as Java does, and as it works - at least at the moment - for the whole world, and as it will probably do forever. Just compare BufferedReader.readLine() or LineNumberReader.

      Sorry, your arguments just do not work.

      If you are happy, you can define

      public static final String LINE_BREAKERS = "rn" + System.getProperty("line.separator");

      But <i>if</i> you really expect changes about line breaking conventions in the future, also this is not a solution. The changes may appear on a third system, and the Java code may be confronted with such a source without the system Java runs on behaving this way.

      So I insist that my proposed solution is the most straight one, is Java-conform, is real-world-orientated and just - right.

      Best regards


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