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.NET Assembly File Attributes

, 11 Jan 2008
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This article provides a simple class with commonly used attributes and gets information from the assembly about the product.

Introduction

We have good features in .NET based on the application version and customizations. Basically .NET provides a unique assembly file for the common setting within Projects. We can play with that file within code as well. How I can say that? .NET gives few attributes based on assembly manipulations. Let's say we want to know the current version of the Product, so we want to access the assembly file and get an answer from that file. When we try to access that product version attribute in the assembly file, we must use the AssemblyVersionAttribute attribute. In addition, a lot of customization attributes exist in the .NET class library based on the assembly file.

A list of commonly used attributes is as follows:

  1. AssemblyTitleAttribute
  2. AssemblyCompanyAttribute
  3. AssemblyVersionAttribute
  4. AssemblyProductAttribute
  5. AssemblyCopyrightAttribute
  6. AssemblyDescriptionAttribute

Now some people may know how to use those attributes with our coding. Perhaps others may not know it. This article provides a simple class with commonly used attributes and gets information from the assembly about the product. Let’s look at the class below:

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Text;
using System.Reflection;

namespace AccessAssembly
{
    public class ApplicationDetails
    {
        static string companyName = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get the name of the system provider name from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string CompanyName
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                                        (typeof(AssemblyCompanyAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        companyName = 
                            ((AssemblyCompanyAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Company;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(companyName))
                    {
                        companyName = string.Empty;
                    }
                }

                return companyName;
            }

        }
        static string productVersion = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get System version from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string ProductVersion
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                                    (typeof(AssemblyVersionAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        productVersion = 
                            ((AssemblyVersionAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Version;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(productVersion))
                    {
                        productVersion = string.Empty;
                    }
                }
                return productVersion;
            }
        }
        static string productName = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get the name of the System from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string ProductName
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                        (typeof(AssemblyProductAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        productName = 
                            ((AssemblyProductAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Product;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(productName))
                    {
                        productName = string.Empty;
                    }
                }
                return productName;
            }
        }
        static string copyRightsDetail = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get the copyRights details from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string CopyRightsDetail
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                                (typeof(AssemblyCopyrightAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        copyRightsDetail = 
                            ((AssemblyCopyrightAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Copyright;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(copyRightsDetail))
                    {
                        copyRightsDetail = string.Empty;
                    }
                }
                return copyRightsDetail;
            }
        }

        static string productTitle = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get the Product tile from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string ProductTitle
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                            (typeof(AssemblyTitleAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        productTitle = 
                            ((AssemblyTitleAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Title;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(productTitle))
                    {
                        productTitle = string.Empty;
                    }
                }
                return productTitle;
            }
        }

       static string productDescription = string.Empty;

        /// <summary />
        /// Get the description of the product from the assembly
        /// </summary />
        public static string ProductDescription
        {
            get
            {
                Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
                if (assembly != null)
                {
                    object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                            (typeof(AssemblyDescriptionAttribute), false);
                    if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
                    {
                        productDescription = 
                          ((AssemblyDescriptionAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Description;
                    }
                    if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(productDescription))
                    {
                        productDescription = string.Empty;
                    }
                }
                return productDescription;
            }
        }
    }
}

Let's look at a simple explanation to get the product description from the assembly file:

public static string ProductDescription
{
    get
    {
        //get the entry assembly file for the product
        Assembly assembly = System.Reflection.Assembly.GetEntryAssembly();
        if (assembly != null)
        {
            //now get the customattribute for the AssemblyDescriptionAttribute
            object[] customAttributes = assembly.GetCustomAttributes
                    (typeof(AssemblyDescriptionAttribute), false);
            if ((customAttributes != null) && (customAttributes.Length > 0))
            {
                productDescription = 
                    ((AssemblyDescriptionAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Description;
            }
            if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(productDescription))
            {
                productDescription = string.Empty;
            }
        }
        return productDescription;
    }
}

We want to get all custom attributes from the assembly file based on the AssemblyDescriptionAttribute.

object[] customAttributes = 
    assembly.GetCustomAttributes(typeof(AssemblyDescriptionAttribute), false);

Later, access the first attribute in the collections and get the value from that:

productDescription = ((AssemblyDescriptionAttribute)customAttributes[0]).Description;

That’s all.

Conclusion

.NET provides good customization based on the assembly file. So please try to access all other attributes in the assembly file and enjoy.

License

This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

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About the Author

Ravenet
Team Leader
Singapore Singapore
- B.Sc. degree in Computer Science.
- 4+ years experience in Visual C#.net and VB.net
- Obsessed in OOP style design and programming.
- Designing and developing Network security tools.
- Designing and developing a client/server application for sharing files among users in a way other than FTP protocol.
- Designing and implementing GSM gateway applications and bulk messaging.
- Windows Mobile and Symbian Programming
- Having knowledge with ERP solutions
 
The summary of my skills:
C#, VB.Net#,ASP.net, VC++, Java, WPF,WCF, Oracle, SQL Server, MS Access, Windows NT administration
 
Cheers
RRave
MCPD,MCTS
http://codegain.com

Comments and Discussions

 
GeneralWith your help, I created this AssemblyInfo class Pinmembermddubs30-Apr-09 4:14 
GeneralRe: With your help, I created this AssemblyInfo class PinmemberRavenet30-Apr-09 4:18 
Questionhow about...? PinmemberStephan Poelwijk12-Jan-08 2:21 
AnswerRe: how about...? PinmemberRavenet30-Jan-08 4:15 
AnswerRe: how about...? PinmemberRavenet30-Jan-08 4:16 
and it's not support to .CF
thanks
 
Best Regards
RRave
MCTS,MCPD
 


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