VB.Net Convert Picturebox BMP to String

Hi Experts.
In VB.Net, I save a picturebox BMP to a BMP file on disk and then convert this file to a string with this function
Using ImagePath

            Dim data As String
            Dim ms As MemoryStream = New MemoryStream
            Dim bmp As Bitmap = New Bitmap(ImagePath)
            bmp.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.BMP)
            data = Convert.ToBase64String(ms.ToArray())
            Return data

Please advise how I would get the string  of a picturebox image directly without having to save to disk first and then convert it

Many Thanks
LVL 2
PNRTAsked:
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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]Billing EngineerCommented:
you should be able to use the image object from the picturebox directly...

Dim data As String
MemoryStream ms = new MemoryStream()
 PictureBox.image.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.BMP)
data = Convert.ToBase64String(ms.ToArray())

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PNRTAuthor Commented:
Hi, thank you for you reply.
I get a  'System.NullReferenceException'   with this code

       
 Dim data As String
        Dim ms As MemoryStream = New MemoryStream
        PictureBox1.Image.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)
        data = Convert.ToBase64String(ms.ToArray())
        MsgBox(data)

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Many Thanks
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PNRTAuthor Commented:
Sorry, I should have mentioned the error is on line 3

Thanks
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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]Billing EngineerCommented:
this would mean that the image object of the picturebox is not set?
can you check/test/validate that (debugging)
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PNRTAuthor Commented:
I am using code to draw in the picture box and that is working correctly
Also, if I use the following code, it saves the picturebox contents correctly to a file

         
  Dim bmp As New Drawing.Bitmap(PictureBox1.Width, PictureBox1.Height)
            PictureBox1.DrawToBitmap(bmp, PictureBox1.ClientRectangle)
            bmp.Save(System.IO.Path.Combine("C:\Test", "test.bmp"), System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)

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AM I missing something different?
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Mike TomlinsonMiddle School Assistant TeacherCommented:
Try this one out:
    Private Sub Button1_Click(sender As Object, e As EventArgs) Handles Button1.Click
        Dim data As String = PictureBoxToString(PictureBox1)
    End Sub

    Private Function PictureBoxToString(ByVal PB As PictureBox) As String
        Dim bmp As New Drawing.Bitmap(PB.Width, PB.Height)
        PB.DrawToBitmap(bmp, PB.ClientRectangle)
        Dim ms As New IO.MemoryStream
        bmp.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)
        Return Convert.ToBase64String(ms.ToArray())
    End Function

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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]Billing EngineerCommented:
Indeed, that is what I wanted to post also...
in short:
bmp.Save(System.IO.Path.Combine("C:\Test", "test.bmp"), System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)
should be:
bmp.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)
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PNRTAuthor Commented:
Hi, thanks for the reply

I added a msgbox after        Dim data As String = PictureBoxToString(PictureBox1)
But the msgbox returned blank.

So I added a bmp graphic to the picturebox - still blank
So I added a bmp graphic as a background image to the picture box, msgbox still blank.

The function seems to make perfect sense but isn't doing anything

I think I have a defective picturebox!!!
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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]Billing EngineerCommented:
I rather guess that the messagebox is unable to display the "text" generated by the bitmap string...
what is your goal, actually, to see a "string" from a bitmap?
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PNRTAuthor Commented:
Hi, yes I wanted to save the bitmap to a file as a string
If I save the bitmap to a file on the disk, I can then convert the file OK and that string then shows in a msgbox
I was trying to cut out the step of saving the bitmap to disk and then converting it to a string

I used this code to convert the file and it works fine

           Dim data As String
            Dim ms As MemoryStream = New MemoryStream
            Dim bmp As Bitmap = New Bitmap(sImagePath)
            bmp.Save(ms, System.Drawing.Imaging.ImageFormat.Bmp)
            data = Convert.ToBase64String(ms.ToArray())
            Return data

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Many thanks for the help!
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