A unified approach is presented for evaluation of the error probabilities of a class of digital communications systems in additive noise and interference. This class of systems includes coherent systems such asM-ary amplitude-shift keying (ASK),M-ary phase-shift keying (PSK), andM-ary amplitude-and-phase keying (APK); it also includes differential coherent systems such as binary differential PSK (DPSK). The noise is not necessarily Gaussian. The interference can be intersymbol interference, co-channel interference, adjacent-channel interference, any of their linear combinations, or intermodulation prodducts at the output of some nonlinear device. This approach essentially expands the characteristic function of the interferences into a power series so that the desired error probability can be evaluated as the sum of terms representing perturbations around the error probability due to additive noise alone. Bounds on three kinds of truncation errors, which are simple and applicable to all aforementioned digital systems, are obtained. As a result, any desired accuracy in the evaluation of the error probabilities can be achieved with this approach. In the special case in which the noise is Gaussian, explicit bounds on truncation errors are also obtained. Examples are given to illustrate how the unified analysis can be applied to evaluate the error probabilities of various digital systems. More specifically, the combined effects of Gaussian noise, intersymbol interference, and co-channel interference on the error performance ofM-ary coherent PSK and APK (MCPSK and MCAPK) systems are computed. The probability of error of a binary DPSK (BDPSK) system in the presence of Gaussian noise and intersymbol interference is analyzed. The intermodulation products at the output of a hardlimiter are also determined.