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MemberInfo.IsDefined Method

Updated: January 2010

When overridden in a derived class, indicates whether one or more attributes of the specified type or of its derived types is applied to this member.

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

public abstract bool IsDefined(
	Type attributeType,
	bool inherit


Type: System.Type

The type of custom attribute to search for. The search includes derived types.

Type: System.Boolean

true to search this member's inheritance chain to find the attributes; otherwise, false. This parameter is ignored for properties and events; see Remarks.

Return Value

Type: System.Boolean
true if one or more instances of attributeType or any of its derived types is applied to this member; otherwise, false.


ICustomAttributeProvider.IsDefined(Type, Boolean)
_MemberInfo.IsDefined(Type, Boolean)

This method ignores the inherit parameter for properties and events. To search the inheritance chain for attributes on properties and events, use the appropriate overloads of the Attribute.IsDefined method.


In 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 use this 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 example determines whether the specified attribute is applied to the specified member.

using System;
using System.Reflection;

// Define a custom attribute with one named parameter.
public class MyAttribute : Attribute
    private string myName;
    public MyAttribute(string name)
        myName = name;
    public string Name
            return myName;

// Define a class that has the custom attribute associated with one of its members. 
public class MyClass1
    [MyAttribute("This is an example attribute.")]
    public void MyMethod(int i)

public class MemberInfo_GetCustomAttributes_IsDefined
    public static void Main()
            // Get the type of MyClass1.
            Type myType = typeof(MyClass1);
            // Get the members associated with MyClass1.
            MemberInfo[] myMembers = myType.GetMembers();

            // Display the attributes for each of the members of MyClass1. 
            for(int i = 0; i < myMembers.Length; i++)
                // Display the attribute if it is of type MyAttribute. 
                if(myMembers[i].IsDefined(typeof(MyAttribute), false))
                    Object[] myAttributes = myMembers[i].GetCustomAttributes(typeof(MyAttribute), false);
                    Console.WriteLine("\nThe attributes of type MyAttribute for the member {0} are: \n",
                    for(int j = 0; j < myAttributes.Length; j++)
                        // Display the value associated with the attribute.
                        Console.WriteLine("The value of the attribute is : \"{0}\"",
        catch(Exception e)
            Console.WriteLine("An exception occurred: {0}", e.Message);

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, Windows CE, Windows Mobile for Smartphone, Windows Mobile for Pocket PC, Xbox 360, Zune

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

.NET Compact Framework

Supported in: 3.5, 2.0, 1.0

XNA Framework

Supported in: 3.0, 2.0, 1.0




January 2010

Clarified that the inherit parameter is ignored for properties and events.

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