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ConditionalWeakTable<TKey, TValue>.GetValue Method

Atomically searches for a specified key in the table and returns the corresponding value. If the key does not exist in the table, the method invokes a callback method to create a value that is bound to the specified key.

Namespace:  System.Runtime.CompilerServices
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)

public TValue GetValue(
	TKey key,
	ConditionalWeakTable<(Of <(<'TKey, TValue>)>)>..::..CreateValueCallback createValueCallback


Type: TKey
The key to search for. key represents the object to which the property is attached.
Type: System.Runtime.CompilerServices.ConditionalWeakTable<TKey, TValue>.CreateValueCallback
A delegate to a method that can create a value for the given key. It has a single parameter of type TKey, and returns a value of type TValue.

Return Value

Type: TValue
The value attached to key, if key already exists in the table; otherwise, the new value returned by the createValueCallback delegate.


key or createValueCallback is null.

If key does not exist in the table, GetValue invokes the method that is defined by the createValueCallback parameter and passes it the key. A new value is bound to the key in the table and returned as a result.

Use this method only when the class that represents the table's value does not define a default constructor. If it does define a default constructor, use the GetOrCreateValue method instead. To retrieve the value of an existing key without adding the key/value pair if the key is not found in the table, call the TryGetValue method.

If multiple threads try to create the same key, createValueCallback may be invoked multiple times with the same key. Only one of these calls will succeed, and its returned value will be added to the table. Which thread succeeds in creating the value is indeterminate. This rule permits the table to invoke createValueCallback outside the internal table lock to prevent deadlocks.

The following example defines a MainClass class and a MainInfo class, which provides information about the MainClass instance. It also defines a static (Shared in Visual Basic) CreateAttachedValue method that can be assigned to the ConditionalWeakTable<TKey, TValue>.CreateValueCallback delegate and passed to the GetValue method. The example calls the GetValue method to add a MainClass object and its attached MainInfo object to a ConditionalWeakTable<TKey, TValue> table. The example also illustrates calls to the Add and GetOrCreateValue methods to add key/value pairs to the table, and to the TryGetValue method to retrieve the value of an existing key.

using System;
using System.Reflection;
using System.Runtime.CompilerServices;

public class Example
   string Name; 

   public Example(string name)
      this.Name = name;

   public override string ToString()
      return this.Name;

// Define a class to contain information about each Example instance.
public class ExampleInfo
   public string Name;
   public int Methods;
   public int Properties;

   public override string ToString()
      return String.Format("{0}: {1} Methods, {2} Properties", 
                           this.Name, this.Methods, this.Properties);

public class ExampleTest
   private static BindingFlags flags = BindingFlags.Public | BindingFlags.Instance;

   public static void Main()
      Example ex1 = new Example("ex1");
      Example ex2 = new Example("ex2");
      Example ex3 = new Example("ex3");

      ExampleInfo exInfo1 = new ExampleInfo(); 
      exInfo1.Name = ex1.ToString();
      exInfo1.Methods = ex1.GetType().GetMethods(flags).Length;
      exInfo1.Properties = ex1.GetType().GetProperties(flags).Length;

      ExampleInfo exInfo3 = new ExampleInfo(); 
      exInfo3.Name = ex3.ToString();
      exInfo3.Methods = ex3.GetType().GetMethods(flags).Length;
      exInfo3.Properties = ex3.GetType().GetProperties(flags).Length;

      var attached = new ConditionalWeakTable<Example, ExampleInfo>();
      ExampleInfo value = null;

      // Attach a property to ex1 using the Add method, then retrieve it.
      attached.Add(ex1, exInfo1);
      if (attached.TryGetValue(ex1, out value))
         Console.WriteLine("{0}, {1}", ex1, value);
         Console.WriteLine("{0} does not have an attached property.", ex1);

      // Attempt to retrieve the value attached to ex2.
      value = attached.GetValue(ex2, ExampleTest.CreateAttachedValue);      
      if (attached.TryGetValue(ex2, out value))
         Console.WriteLine("{0}, {1}", ex2, value);
         Console.WriteLine("{0} does not have an attached property.", ex2);

      // Attempt to retrieve the value attached to ex3.
      value = attached.GetOrCreateValue(ex3);
      Console.WriteLine("{0}, {1}", ex3, value);

   public static ExampleInfo CreateAttachedValue(Example ex)
      ExampleInfo info = new ExampleInfo();
      info.Name = ex.ToString();
      info.Methods = ex.GetType().GetMethods(flags).Length;
      info.Properties = ex.GetType().GetProperties(flags).Length;
      return info;
// The example displays the following output:
//       ex1, ex1: 4 Methods, 0 Properties
//       ex2, ex2: 4 Methods, 0 Properties
//       ex3, : 0 Methods, 0 Properties

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4

  • SecurityCriticalAttribute 

    requires full trust for the immediate caller. This member cannot be used by partially trusted or transparent code.

Windows 7, Windows Vista SP1 or later, Windows XP SP3, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core supported with SP1 or later), Windows Server 2003 SP2

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