Directory Services

Querying for Users

To query for a user, the query must contain the following search expression:


Why? Because the computer class is a subclass of user, a query containing only (objectClass=user) would return user objects and computer objects. Also, the object category of the user object is person (not user); therefore, the expression (objectCategory=user) does not return any users. If you use the expression (objectCategory=user), the query returns user objects and contact objects.

Users can be placed in any container or organizational unit in a domain as well as the root of the domain. This means that users can be in numerous locations in the directory hierarchy. You can perform a deep search for (objectCategory=user) to find all users in a container, organizational unit, domain, domain tree, or forest—depending on the object that the IDirectorySearch pointer you're using is bound to.