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How to reverse a bit-sequence?

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Here is an example: Bit-sequence: 111001011 Result(when reversed): 110100111 Is there any function that does this for me? If not, how would you solve this problem? ------------------------------ Suffering binds you to reality.

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That I''m aware of, there''s no function to do that. But I suppose you could do it pretty easily in a simple for loop. Something like this, I imagine.

unsigned char ReverseBits(unsigned char number){

unsigned char temp = 0;

for (int loop = 0; loop < 8; loop++){
int bit = (number&(1<<loop))>>loop;
temp |= bit<<(7-loop);

return temp;


Of course, that function assumes it''s working with an 8 bit number, but it''s pretty straightforward to change that for other bit depths too.

-Arek the Absolute

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// reverse_bits_table

const unsigned char reverse_bits_table[256] =
0x00, 0x80, 0x40, 0xc0, 0x20, 0xa0, 0x60, 0xe0,
0x10, 0x90, 0x50, 0xd0, 0x30, 0xb0, 0x70, 0xf0,
0x08, 0x88, 0x48, 0xc8, 0x28, 0xa8, 0x68, 0xe8,
0x18, 0x98, 0x58, 0xd8, 0x38, 0xb8, 0x78, 0xf8,
0x04, 0x84, 0x44, 0xc4, 0x24, 0xa4, 0x64, 0xe4,
0x14, 0x94, 0x54, 0xd4, 0x34, 0xb4, 0x74, 0xf4,
0x0c, 0x8c, 0x4c, 0xcc, 0x2c, 0xac, 0x6c, 0xec,
0x1c, 0x9c, 0x5c, 0xdc, 0x3c, 0xbc, 0x7c, 0xfc,
0x02, 0x82, 0x42, 0xc2, 0x22, 0xa2, 0x62, 0xe2,
0x12, 0x92, 0x52, 0xd2, 0x32, 0xb2, 0x72, 0xf2,
0x0a, 0x8a, 0x4a, 0xca, 0x2a, 0xaa, 0x6a, 0xea,
0x1a, 0x9a, 0x5a, 0xda, 0x3a, 0xba, 0x7a, 0xfa,
0x06, 0x86, 0x46, 0xc6, 0x26, 0xa6, 0x66, 0xe6,
0x16, 0x96, 0x56, 0xd6, 0x36, 0xb6, 0x76, 0xf6,
0x0e, 0x8e, 0x4e, 0xce, 0x2e, 0xae, 0x6e, 0xee,
0x1e, 0x9e, 0x5e, 0xde, 0x3e, 0xbe, 0x7e, 0xfe,
0x01, 0x81, 0x41, 0xc1, 0x21, 0xa1, 0x61, 0xe1,
0x11, 0x91, 0x51, 0xd1, 0x31, 0xb1, 0x71, 0xf1,
0x09, 0x89, 0x49, 0xc9, 0x29, 0xa9, 0x69, 0xe9,
0x19, 0x99, 0x59, 0xd9, 0x39, 0xb9, 0x79, 0xf9,
0x05, 0x85, 0x45, 0xc5, 0x25, 0xa5, 0x65, 0xe5,
0x15, 0x95, 0x55, 0xd5, 0x35, 0xb5, 0x75, 0xf5,
0x0d, 0x8d, 0x4d, 0xcd, 0x2d, 0xad, 0x6d, 0xed,
0x1d, 0x9d, 0x5d, 0xdd, 0x3d, 0xbd, 0x7d, 0xfd,
0x03, 0x83, 0x43, 0xc3, 0x23, 0xa3, 0x63, 0xe3,
0x13, 0x93, 0x53, 0xd3, 0x33, 0xb3, 0x73, 0xf3,
0x0b, 0x8b, 0x4b, 0xcb, 0x2b, 0xab, 0x6b, 0xeb,
0x1b, 0x9b, 0x5b, 0xdb, 0x3b, 0xbb, 0x7b, 0xfb,
0x07, 0x87, 0x47, 0xc7, 0x27, 0xa7, 0x67, 0xe7,
0x17, 0x97, 0x57, 0xd7, 0x37, 0xb7, 0x77, 0xf7,
0x0f, 0x8f, 0x4f, 0xcf, 0x2f, 0xaf, 0x6f, 0xef,
0x1f, 0x9f, 0x5f, 0xdf, 0x3f, 0xbf, 0x7f, 0xff

// reverse_bits_slow

unsigned char reverse_byte_slow(unsigned char b)
unsigned char r;

#define REVERSE_BIT { r |= b & 128; b <<= 1; r >>= 1; }


r |= b & 128;

return r;

// reverse_bits_fast

unsigned char reverse_bits_fast(unsigned char b)
return reverse_bits_table[b];

[edited by - doho on June 19, 2003 4:36:06 PM]

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This will reverse an arbitrary number of bits, upto 32. You can expand the pattern to 64 bits if you need more.

e.g. 0x01 becomes 0x80 when you reverse 8bits (as opposed to 0x80000000 which happen when you reverse 32bits). The i>>= 32-nbits takes care of this.

inline u32 ReverseBits(u32 i, u32 nbits)
i = ((i & 0x55555555) << 1 ) | ((i & 0xAAAAAAAA) >> 1 );
i = ((i & 0x33333333) << 2 ) | ((i & 0xCCCCCCCC) >> 2 );
i = ((i & 0x0F0F0F0F) << 4 ) | ((i & 0xF0F0F0F0) >> 4 );
i = ((i & 0x00FF00FF) << 8 ) | ((i & 0xFF00FF00) >> 8 );
i = ((i & 0x0000FFFF) << 16) | ((i & 0xFFFF0000) >> 16);
i >>= 32-nbits;
return x;

[edited by - Magmai Kai Holmlor on June 19, 2003 4:39:56 PM]

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Fun problem. Decided to code my own solution.

#define TYPE unsigned char
TYPE reverse( TYPE val )
TYPE temp = 0;
for(int i = 0; i < sizeof(TYPE)*8; i++)
if( val & (1 << i) )
temp |= 1 << (sizeof(TYPE)*8 - i - 1);
return temp;

I think its the best because of simplicity.

EDIT: Made it even easier.

[edited by - haro on June 19, 2003 4:56:18 PM]

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No, it really wasn''t. I was just interested in the solution, out of curiosity..

Suffering binds you to reality.

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