Directory Services


The IADs::Get method retrieves a property of a given name from the property cache. The property can be single-valued, or multi-valued. The property value is represented as either a variant for a single-valued property or a variant array (of VARIANT or bytes) for a property that allows multiple values.

  BSTR bstrName,
  VARIANT* pvProp


[in] Contains a BSTR that specifies the property name.
[out] Pointer to a VARIANT that receives the value of the property. For a multi-valued property, pvProp is a variant array of VARIANT, unless the property is a binary type. In this latter case, pvProp is a variant array of bytes (VT_U1 or VT_ARRAY). For the property that refers to an object, pvProp is a VT_DISPATCH pointer to the object referred to.

Return Values

This method supports standard return values, as well as the following.

For more information, see ADSI Error Codes.

Return Code Description
S_OK The property value was retrieved successfully.
E_ADS_PROPERTY_NOT_FOUND The property was not found in the cache. The property may not have an attribute, or is invalid.
E_FAIL The operation failed.


The IADs::Get method requires the caller to handle the single- and multi-valued property values differently. Thus, if you know that the property of interest is either single- or multi-valued, use the IADs::Get method to retrieve the property value. The following code example shows how you, as a caller, can handle single- and multi-valued properties when calling this method.

When a property is uninitialized, calling this method invokes an implicit call to the IADs::GetInfo method. This loads from the underlying directory store the values of the supported properties that have not been set in the cache. Any subsequent calls to IADs::Get deals with property values in the cache only. For more information about the behavior of implicit and explicit calls to IADs::GetInfo, see IADs::GetInfo.

You can also use IADs::GetEx to retrieve property values from the property cache. However, the values are returned as a variant array of VARIANTs, regardless of whether they are single-valued or multi-valued. That is, ADSI attempts to package the returned property values in consistent data formats. This saves you, as a caller, the effort of validating the data types when unsure that the returned data has single or multiple values.

Example Code [Visual Basic]

The following code example retrieves the security descriptor for an object using IADs::Get.

Dim x As IADs
Dim Desc As IADsSecurityDescriptor
On Error GoTo ErrTest:
Set x = GetObject("LDAP://CN=Administrator,CN=Users,DC=Fabrikam,DC=com")
' Single-valued properties.
Debug.Print "Home Phone Number is: " & x.Get("homePhone")
' Some property values represents other ADSI objects. 
' Consult your provider documentation.
Set Desc = x.Get("ntSecurityDescriptor")
' Multi-valued property, assuming that multiple values were
' assigned to the "otherHomePhone" properties. Caller must 
' enumerate all the available values.
Debug.Print "Other Phone Numbers are: "
otherNumbers = x.Get("otherHomePhone")
For Each homeNum In otherNumbers
  Debug.Print homeNum
Exit Sub
  Debug.Print Hex(Err.Number)
  Set x = Nothing
  Set Desc = Nothing

The following code example shows how to work with property values of binary data using IADs::Get and IADs::Put.

Dim oTarget As IADs
Dim Octet(5) As Byte
Dim MultiOctet(2) As Variant
Dim i As Integer, j As Integer

On Error GoTo Cleanup
' Set up MultiOctetString.
For i = 0 To 2
	For j = 0 To 5
		Octet(j) = CByte(i * j)
	Next j
	MultiOctet(i) = Octet
Next i
' Bind to the object and set MultiOctetString.
Set oTarget=GetObject("LDAP://CN=SomeUser,CN=Users,DC=Fabrikam, DC=COM")
oTarget.Put "multiOctetString", MultiOctet
Dim GetOctet As Variant
Dim Temp As Variant
' Read back and print MultiOctetString.
GetOctet = oTarget.Get("multiOctetString")
For i = LBound(GetOctet) To UBound(GetOctet)
	Temp = GetOctet(i)
	For j = LBound(Temp) To UBound(Temp)
		Debug.Print Temp(j)
	Next j
	Debug.Print "----"
Next i

Exit Sub

   MsgBox("An error has occurred. " & Err.Number)
   Set oTarget = Nothing

Example Code [VBScript]

The following code example shows how to retrieve values of the optional properties of an object using IADs::Get.


Dim x 
On error resume next
Set x = GetObject("WinNT://Fabrikam/Administrator")
Response.Write "Object Name: " & x.Name & "<br>"
Response.Write "Object Class: " & x.Class & "<br>"
' Get optional property values of this object.
Set cls = GetObject(x.Schema)

For Each op In cls.OptionalProperties
   v = obj.Get(op)
   if err.Number = 0 then
	 Response.Write "Optional Property: & op & "=" v & "<br>"
   end if


Example Code [C++]

The following code example reads attributes with single and multiple values using IADs::Get.

IADs *pUsr=NULL;
// Bind to a directory object.
hr = ADsGetObject(L"WinNT://Fabrikam/Administrator,user", IID_IADs, (void**) &pUsr );
if ( !SUCCEEDED(hr) ) { return hr; }
// Get a single-valued attribute.
hr = pUsr->Get(CComBSTR("FullName"), &var );
if ( SUCCEEDED(hr) )
	printf("FullName: %S\n", V_BSTR(&var) );
if ( pUsr )
// Get a multi-valued attribute from a service object.
IADs *pSvc = NULL;
hr = ADsGetObject(L"WinNT://Fabrikam/Account/Browser,service", IID_IADs, (void**) &pSvc );
if ( !SUCCEEDED(hr) )
	return hr;
hr = pSvc->Get(CComBSTR("Dependencies"), &var );
if ( SUCCEEDED(hr) )
	LONG lstart, lend;
	SAFEARRAY *sa = V_ARRAY( &var );
	VARIANT varItem;
	// Get the lower and upper bound.
	hr = SafeArrayGetLBound( sa, 1, &lstart );
	hr = SafeArrayGetUBound( sa, 1, &lend );
	// Iterate and print the content.
	printf("Getting service dependencies using IADs :\n");
	for ( long idx=lstart; idx <= lend; idx++ )
		hr = SafeArrayGetElement( sa, &idx, &varItem );
		printf("%S ", V_BSTR(&varItem));
// Cleanup.
if ( pSvc )


Client: Included in Windows XP and Windows 2000 Professional.
Server: Included in Windows Server 2003 and Windows 2000 Server.
Redistributable: Requires Active Directory Client Extension on Windows NT 4.0 SP6a and Windows 95/98/Me.
Header: Declared in Iads.h.

See Also

IADs, IADs::GetEx, IADs::GetInfo, Property Cache, IADs::Put, IADs::PutEx