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MathGroup Archive 2001

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converting hex strings

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg27413] converting hex strings
  • From: maarten.vanderburgt at
  • Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2001 00:53:36 -0500 (EST)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at


I have a list of hexadecimal strings (read from a hex string text file):
e.g. {"01a0", "fffe", "0080"} representing integers.
How can I convert such a list to integers so that I get {416, 4094, 128}?
I cannot make a function using something like

hextoint = 16^^#&


hextoin = 16^^ToExpression[#]&

I get errors like below:

In[44]:= hexstr = "a1b0"
         t = ToExpression[hexstr];
General::"digit": "Digit at position \!\(1\) in \!\(\"t\"\) is too large to
be used in base \!\(16\)."

Where does this error come from?

While this works ok:
In[43]:= 16^^a1b0
Out[43]= 41392

The ToExpression[ ] also would give problems: ToExpression["01a0"] returns

Has anyone done anything along these lines?

How would I have to convert a hex list representing floats (IEEE floating
point standard)?, e.g. {"42c8000", "3dfcd35b", "bf80000"} which should
convert to {100.0, 0.12345, -1.0} in a decimal notation.

Thanks for your help


Maarten van der Burgt

Icos Vision Systems
Esperantolaan 9
B-3001 Leuven

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