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Grouping objects

In the second article in our continuing series on scripting, noted scripting expert Christa Anderson covers some advanced scripting concepts and offers several tips that will help you debug your scripts.

Objects can be grouped in a number of different ways. Collection objects contain like kinds of objects, which you can refer to either by index number (for collections created on the fly, such as Arguments) or by name (for collections with known contents, such as Shell).

Static groups of Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) objects of the same ilk are known as classes, with particular objects in that class known as instances (for example, logical drives are a class; drive C: is an instance of that class).

You can also group data into a dictionary object, which is like an array, but a dictionary object makes it easier to work with multiple columns. (While it's possible to have multicolumn arrays, the indexing is painful.)

Increase your scripting expertise

  Arranging and manipulating data
  Combining operators with functions
  Simplify with subroutines
  Where do objects come from?
  Grouping objects
  Seven quick scripting tips

Christa Anderson
When Christa Anderson began working with Windows Server operating systems in 1992, she became increasingly interested in finding more efficient and flexible ways of performing routine tasks. Christa has written extensively about administrative scripting and taught technical sessions on the subject at conferences such as Comdex and CeBIT, helping people who had never done any scripting to write their own scripts in half a day. In addition to her interest in scripting Windows management, Christa is an authority on server-based computing and the program manager for Terminal Services licensing in Longhorn. If you have a scripting question for Christa, please e-mail her at

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