PowerShell for Windows Admins

Feb 28 2011   1:32PM GMT

WMI metadata

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway


We normally use WMI to either return information about our systems

Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_Process | sort KernelModeTime -desc | Format-Table Name, KernelModeTime –AutoSize

or to perform some action

Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_Process -Filter “Name=’notepad.exe'” | Remove-WmiObject

One hidden facet of WMI are the qualifiers. These contain the metadata about the class.

Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process | select *

shows them tucked away near the end of the data

Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process | select -ExpandProperty Qualifiers

shows them in more detail. Unfortunately this doesn’t give us the full set of information.  We need to add the –amended parameter

Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process -amended | select -ExpandProperty Qualifiers

This enables us to see the description which in this case is

Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process -amended | select -ExpandProperty Qualifiers | Where {$_.Name -eq “Description”}

We can then get the actual text of the description which is held in the Value property.

Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process -amended | select -ExpandProperty Qualifiers | Where {$_.Name -eq “Description”} |  Format-Table value -wrap

The Win32_Process class represents a sequence of events on a Win32 system. Any sequence consisting of the interaction of one or more processors or interpreters, some executable code, and a set of inputs, is a descendent (or member) of this class.
Example: A client application running on a Win32 system.

We can simplify the code to

((Get-WmiObject -List Win32_Process -amended).Qualifiers | Where {$_.Name -eq “Description”}).Value

This is useful if you have a set of classes you want to investigate and need to know what they do

Get-WmiObject -List *print* | sort name |

foreach {


(( Get-WmiObject -List $_.Name -Amended ).Qualifiers | Where {$_.Name -eq “Description”}).Value


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