.NET Tip: Display Public Information for an Assembly

My last tip, "Display All Fields and Properties of an Object," showed you how to display information for an object in your program. This time, I'll show you how to display the public information for an assembly. I'll again use reflection to load an assembly and then iterate through the modules, types, and members of the assembly. The DisplayAssemblyInfo() below will do just this, returning a string with all of the relevant information.

public static string DisplayAssemblyInfo(string AssemblyName)
{
   StringBuilder sb = new StringBuilder();
   sb.Append("Assembly: " + AssemblyName);

   Assembly Assembly = Assembly.LoadFrom(AssemblyName);
   foreach (Module Module in Assembly.GetModules())
   {
      sb.Append("\r\n\r\n Module: " + Module.Name);
      Type[] TypesArray = Module.FindTypes(null, null);
      foreach (Type Type in TypesArray)
      {
         sb.Append("\r\n Type: " + Type.Name);
         MemberInfo[] MemberInfoArray =
            Type.GetMethods(BindingFlags.Public |
                            BindingFlags.Instance |
                            BindingFlags.DeclaredOnly);
         sb.Append("\r\nMembers: ");
         if (MemberInfoArray.Length > 0)
         {
            foreach (MemberInfo MemberInfo in MemberInfoArray)
            {
               sb.Append(MemberInfo.Name + "\r\n ");
            }
         }
         else
            sb.Append("None");
      }
   }
   return sb.ToString();
}

In this case, I'm only including the public instance members that are actually declared on the type, not inherited members. You can take a look at the other options for the BindingFlags available on the GetMethods() call to set different criteria. Here is an example of calling the DisplayAsseblyInfo() method and displaying the result in the output window.

Debug.Print(Util.DisplayAssemblyInfo("CS Tips.exe"));

The results in the output window look like this:

Assembly: CS Tips.exe

 Module: CS Tips.exe
   Type: IReadOnlyGPSLocation
Members: get_Latitude
         get_Longitude
         get_Speed
         get_Direction

   Type: GPSLocation
Members: get_Latitude
         set_Latitude
         get_Longitude
         set_Longitude
         get_Speed
         set_Speed
         get_Direction
         set_Direction

   Type: Asset
Members: get_MostRecentLocation
         set_MostRecentLocation

With this technique, you can get a better view of the assemblies you are using or use it to help document the assemblies you are creating.

About the Author

Jay Miller is a Software Engineer with Electronic Tracking Systems, a company dedicated to robbery prevention, apprehension, and recovery based in Carrollton, Texas. Jay has been working with .NET since the release of the first beta and is co-author of Learn Microsoft Visual Basic.Net In a Weekend. Jay can be reached via email at jmiller@sm-ets.com.



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