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CustomAttributeData.GetCustomAttributes Method (Assembly)

Returns a list of CustomAttributeData objects representing data about the attributes that have been applied to the target assembly.

Namespace:  System.Reflection
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)

public static IList<CustomAttributeData> GetCustomAttributes(
	Assembly target
)

Parameters

target
Type: System.Reflection.Assembly

The assembly whose custom attribute data is to be retrieved.

Return Value

Type: System.Collections.Generic.IList<CustomAttributeData>
A list of objects that represent data about the attributes that have been applied to the target assembly.

ExceptionCondition
ArgumentNullException

target is null.

This method provides an alternative to the GetCustomAttributes method that can always be used in the Reflection-only context.

The following example defines a custom attribute with four constructors and four properties. Two of the properties are read-only, and are set by using the positional parameters of the constructors. The other two properties are read/write, and can be set only by using named arguments. One positional property is an array of strings, and one named property is an array of integers.

The attribute is applied to the assembly, to a type declared in the assembly, to a method of the type, and to a parameter of the method. Different constructors are used for these cases. When executed, the assembly loads itself into the reflection-only context and displays the custom attributes.

The attribute that is applied to the type demonstrates array properties, with both positional and named arguments.

The GetCustomAttributes method is used in Main() to get the custom attributes applied to the assembly. The return value of the method is passed to the ShowAttributeData method.

using System;
using System.Reflection;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Collections.ObjectModel;

// The example attribute is applied to the assembly.
[assembly:Example(ExampleKind.ThirdKind, Note="This is a note on the assembly.")]

// An enumeration used by the ExampleAttribute class. 
public enum ExampleKind
{
    FirstKind, 
    SecondKind, 
    ThirdKind, 
    FourthKind
};

// An example attribute. The attribute can be applied to all 
// targets, from assemblies to parameters. 
//
[AttributeUsage(AttributeTargets.All)]
public class ExampleAttribute : Attribute
{
    // Data for properties. 
    private ExampleKind kindValue;
    private string noteValue;
    private string[] arrayStrings;
    private int[] arrayNumbers;

    // Constructors. The parameterless constructor (.ctor) calls 
    // the constructor that specifies ExampleKind and an array of  
    // strings, and supplies the default values. 
    // 
    public ExampleAttribute(ExampleKind initKind, string[] initStrings)
    {
        kindValue = initKind;
        arrayStrings = initStrings;
    }
    public ExampleAttribute(ExampleKind initKind) : this(initKind, null) {}
    public ExampleAttribute() : this(ExampleKind.FirstKind, null) {}

    // Properties. The Note and Numbers properties must be read/write, so they 
    // can be used as named parameters. 
    // 
    public ExampleKind Kind { get { return kindValue; }}
    public string[] Strings { get { return arrayStrings; }}
    public string Note    
    {
        get { return noteValue; }
        set { noteValue = value; }
    }
    public int[] Numbers
    {
        get { return arrayNumbers; }
        set { arrayNumbers = value; }
    }
}

// The example attribute is applied to the test class. 
//
[Example(ExampleKind.SecondKind, 
         new string[] { "String array argument, line 1", 
                        "String array argument, line 2", 
                        "String array argument, line 3" }, 
         Note="This is a note on the class.",
         Numbers = new int[] { 53, 57, 59 })] 
public class Test
{
    // The example attribute is applied to a method, using the 
    // parameterless constructor and supplying a named argument. 
    // The attribute is also applied to the method parameter. 
    //
    [Example(Note="This is a note on a method.")]
    public void TestMethod([Example] object arg) { }

    // Main() gets objects representing the assembly, the test 
    // type, the test method, and the method parameter. Custom 
    // attribute data is displayed for each of these. 
    // 
    public static void Main()
    {
        Assembly asm = Assembly.ReflectionOnlyLoad("Source");
        Type t = asm.GetType("Test");
        MethodInfo m = t.GetMethod("TestMethod");
        ParameterInfo[] p = m.GetParameters();

        Console.WriteLine("\r\nAttributes for assembly: '{0}'", asm);
        ShowAttributeData(CustomAttributeData.GetCustomAttributes(asm));
        Console.WriteLine("\r\nAttributes for type: '{0}'", t);
        ShowAttributeData(CustomAttributeData.GetCustomAttributes(t));
        Console.WriteLine("\r\nAttributes for member: '{0}'", m);
        ShowAttributeData(CustomAttributeData.GetCustomAttributes(m));
        Console.WriteLine("\r\nAttributes for parameter: '{0}'", p);
        ShowAttributeData(CustomAttributeData.GetCustomAttributes(p[0]));
    }

    private static void ShowAttributeData(
        IList<CustomAttributeData> attributes)
    {
        foreach( CustomAttributeData cad in attributes )
        {
            Console.WriteLine("   {0}", cad);
            Console.WriteLine("      Constructor: '{0}'", cad.Constructor);

            Console.WriteLine("      Constructor arguments:");
            foreach( CustomAttributeTypedArgument cata 
                in cad.ConstructorArguments )
            {
                ShowValueOrArray(cata);
            }

            Console.WriteLine("      Named arguments:");
            foreach( CustomAttributeNamedArgument cana 
                in cad.NamedArguments )
            {
                Console.WriteLine("         MemberInfo: '{0}'", 
                    cana.MemberInfo);
                ShowValueOrArray(cana.TypedValue);
            }
        }
    }

    private static void ShowValueOrArray(CustomAttributeTypedArgument cata)
    {
        if (cata.Value.GetType() == typeof(ReadOnlyCollection<CustomAttributeTypedArgument>))
        {
            Console.WriteLine("         Array of '{0}':", cata.ArgumentType);

            foreach (CustomAttributeTypedArgument cataElement in 
                (ReadOnlyCollection<CustomAttributeTypedArgument>) cata.Value)
            {
                Console.WriteLine("             Type: '{0}'  Value: '{1}'",
                    cataElement.ArgumentType, cataElement.Value);
            }
        }
        else
        {
            Console.WriteLine("         Type: '{0}'  Value: '{1}'", 
                cata.ArgumentType, cata.Value);
        }
    }
}

/* This code example produces output similar to the following:

Attributes for assembly: 'source, Version=0.0.0.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=null'
   [System.Runtime.CompilerServices.CompilationRelaxationsAttribute((Int32)8)]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor(Int32)'
      Constructor arguments:
         Type: 'System.Int32'  Value: '8'
      Named arguments:
   [System.Runtime.CompilerServices.RuntimeCompatibilityAttribute(WrapNonExceptionThrows = True)]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor()'
      Constructor arguments:
      Named arguments:
         MemberInfo: 'Boolean WrapNonExceptionThrows'
         Type: 'System.Boolean'  Value: 'True'
   [ExampleAttribute((ExampleKind)2, Note = "This is a note on the assembly.")]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor(ExampleKind)'
      Constructor arguments:
         Type: 'ExampleKind'  Value: '2'
      Named arguments:
         MemberInfo: 'System.String Note'
         Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'This is a note on the assembly.'

Attributes for type: 'Test'
   [ExampleAttribute((ExampleKind)1, new String[3] { "String array argument, line 1", "String array argument, line 2", "String array argument, line 3" }, Note = "This is a note on the class.", Numbers = new Int32[3] { 53, 57, 59 })]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor(ExampleKind, System.String[])'
      Constructor arguments:
         Type: 'ExampleKind'  Value: '1'
         Array of 'System.String[]':
             Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'String array argument, line 1'
             Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'String array argument, line 2'
             Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'String array argument, line 3'
      Named arguments:
         MemberInfo: 'System.String Note'
         Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'This is a note on the class.'
         MemberInfo: 'Int32[] Numbers'
         Array of 'System.Int32[]':
             Type: 'System.Int32'  Value: '53'
             Type: 'System.Int32'  Value: '57'
             Type: 'System.Int32'  Value: '59'

Attributes for member: 'Void TestMethod(System.Object)'
   [ExampleAttribute(Note = "This is a note on a method.")]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor()'
      Constructor arguments:
      Named arguments:
         MemberInfo: 'System.String Note'
         Type: 'System.String'  Value: 'This is a note on a method.'

Attributes for parameter: 'System.Object arg'
   [ExampleAttribute()]
      Constructor: 'Void .ctor()'
      Constructor arguments:
      Named arguments:
*/

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4.5.2, 4.5.1, 4.5, 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, Windows 7, Windows Vista SP2, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core Role not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core Role supported with SP1 or later; Itanium not supported)

The .NET Framework does not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see .NET Framework System Requirements.

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