This documentation is archived and is not being maintained.

CategoryAttribute Class

Specifies the name of the category in which to group the property or event when displayed in a PropertyGrid control set to Categorized mode.

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

public class CategoryAttribute : Attribute

A CategoryAttribute indicates the category to associate the associated property or event with, when listing properties or events in a PropertyGrid control set to Categorized mode. If a CategoryAttribute has not been applied to a property or event, the PropertyGrid associates it with the Misc category. A new category can be created for any name by specifying the name of the category in the constructor for the CategoryAttribute.

The Category property indicates the name of the category that the attribute represents. The Category property also provides transparent localization of category names.

Notes to Inheritors:

If you use category names other than the predefined names, and you want to localize your category names, you must override the GetLocalizedString method.

The CategoryAttribute class defines the following common categories:




Properties related to available actions.


Properties related to how an entity appears.


Properties related to how an entity acts.


Properties related to data and data source management.


Properties that are grouped in a default category.


Properties that are available only at design time.


Properties related to drag-and-drop operations.


Properties related to focus.


Properties related to formatting.


Properties related to the keyboard.


Properties related to layout.


Properties related to the mouse.


Properties related to the window style of top-level forms.

For more information, see Attributes Overview and Extending Metadata Using Attributes.

The following example creates the MyImage property. The property has two attributes: a DescriptionAttribute and a CategoryAttribute.

[Description("The image associated with the control"),Category("Appearance")] 
 public Image MyImage {
    get {
       // Insert code here. 
       return image1;
    set {
       // Insert code here.

The next example gets the category for MyImage. First, the code gets a PropertyDescriptorCollection with all the properties for the object. Next, the code indexes into the PropertyDescriptorCollection to get MyImage. Then it returns the attributes for this property and saves them in the variable attributes.

The example then prints the category by retrieving CategoryAttribute from the AttributeCollection, and writing it to the console screen.

// Gets the attributes for the property.
 AttributeCollection attributes = 

 // Prints the description by retrieving the CategoryAttribute. 
 // from the AttributeCollection.
 CategoryAttribute myAttribute = 


Any public static (Shared in Visual Basic) members of this type are thread safe. Any instance members are not guaranteed to be thread safe.

Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP SP2, Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP Starter Edition, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2000 SP4, Windows Millennium Edition, Windows 98

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

.NET Framework

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