Java replaceAll() regex does not work

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Strings are immutable. You forgot to reassign new String to the s variable :)

s = s.replaceAll("[^a-zA-Z0-9]+", "%");
 // ^ this creates a new String

replaceAll() like all methods in String class, DO NOT modify String on which you invoke a method. This is why we say that String is immutable object. If you want to 'modify' it, you need to do

s = s.replaceAll("[^a-zA-Z0-9]+", "%");

In fact you don't modify String s. What happens here is that new String object is returned from a function. Then you assign its reference to s.


You can't change a String, instead replaceAll returns a new value. so you should use it like this

String newStr = s.replace(...)

Working code as per your expectations :)

import java.util.regex.Pattern;


public class Regex {

    public static void main(String[] args) {
        String s = "123.456/789";
        Pattern p = Pattern.compile("[^a-zA-Z0-9]+");
        String newStr = s.replaceAll("[^a-zA-Z0-9]+", "%");
        System.out.println(s + " -> " + newStr);
    }
}

Output : 123.456/789 -> 123%456%789


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