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Attribute.IsDefined Method (MemberInfo, Type, Boolean)

Determines whether any custom attributes are applied to a member of a type. Parameters specify the member, the type of the custom attribute to search for, and whether to search ancestors of the member.

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

Public Shared Function IsDefined ( _
	element As MemberInfo, _
	attributeType As Type, _
	inherit As Boolean _
) As Boolean


Type: System.Reflection.MemberInfo
An object derived from the MemberInfo class that describes a constructor, event, field, method, type, or property member of a class.
Type: System.Type
The type, or a base type, of the custom attribute to search for.
Type: System.Boolean
If true, specifies to also search the ancestors of element for custom attributes.

Return Value

Type: System.Boolean
true if a custom attribute of type attributeType is applied to element; otherwise, false.


element or attributeType is Nothing.


attributeType is not derived from Attribute.


element is not a constructor, method, property, event, type, or field.


Starting with the .NET Framework version 2.0, this method returns true if a type, method, or constructor has security attributes stored in the new metadata format. Assemblies compiled with version 2.0 or later use the new format. Dynamic assemblies and assemblies compiled with earlier versions of the .NET Framework use the old XML format. See Emitting Declarative Security Attributes.

The following code example illustrates the use of IsDefined, taking a MemberInfo as a parameter.

Imports System
Imports System.Reflection

Module DemoModule

    Public Class TestClass
        ' Assign the Obsolete attribute to a method.
        <Obsolete("This method is obsolete. Use Method2() instead.")> _
        Public Sub Method1()
        End Sub

        Public Sub Method2()
        End Sub
    End Class

    Sub Main()
        ' Get the class type to access its metadata.
        Dim clsType As Type = GetType(TestClass)
        ' Get the MethodInfo object for Method1.
        Dim mInfo As MethodInfo = clsType.GetMethod("Method1")
        ' See if the Obsolete attribute is defined for this method.
        Dim isDef As Boolean = Attribute.IsDefined(mInfo, _
        Dim strDef As String
        If isDef = True Then
            strDef = "is"
            strDef = "is not"
        End If
        ' Display the results.
        Console.WriteLine("The Obsolete attribute {0} defined for " & _
            "method {1} of class {2}.", strDef, mInfo.Name, clsType.Name)
        ' If it's defined, display the attribute's message.
        If isDef = True Then
            Dim attr As Attribute = Attribute.GetCustomAttribute(mInfo, _
            If Not attr Is Nothing And TypeOf attr Is ObsoleteAttribute Then
                Dim obsAttr As ObsoleteAttribute = _
                    CType(attr, ObsoleteAttribute)
                Console.WriteLine("The message is: ""{0}""", obsAttr.Message)
                Console.WriteLine("The message could not be retrieved.")
            End If
        End If
    End Sub
End Module

' Output:
' The Obsolete attribute is defined for method Method1 of class TestClass.
' The message is: "This method is obsolete. Use Method2() instead."

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0, 1.1, 1.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Portable Class Library

Supported in: Portable Class Library

Windows 7, Windows Vista SP1 or later, Windows XP SP3, Windows XP SP2 x64 Edition, 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.