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How do I read compound document properties?

Posted on 2004-09-30
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I need to be able to read the DocumentSummary and SummaryInformation streams from Office files.  I've looked for a full day and it seems that I need to use IPropertyStorage calls, but I have no idea how to use them.

Searching EE brought up quite a few questions, but most of them seemed to be either pointing to dead links or used the dsofile.dll, which has some limitations on non-win2k boxes.  I'd like to do this using API, but I am totally lost.  All examples from MSDN seem to be in C++, and C++ to VB conversion is not something I have ever tried.

I spent all day yesterday looking for some examples of using the API to do this, I'm hoping someone can make me look like an idiot and turn up a link or example source without much effort.
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Question by:GohdanTheMoblin
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by:Bob Learned
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What version of Office do you have?

Bob
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Bob Learned earned 500 total points
ID: 12194437
I guess you saw this:

Dsofile.exe Lets You Edit Office Document Properties from Visual Basic and ASP
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=http://support.microsoft.com:80/support/kb/articles/Q224/3/51.asp&NoWebContent=1

Bob
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by:Bob Learned
ID: 12194449
And this:

Structured Storage with .NET
http://www.dotnet247.com/247reference/msgs/16/84250.aspx

Bob
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by:GohdanTheMoblin
ID: 12194813
The version of Office should be Office 2k, but we may upgrade to OfficeXP soon.  I assume there's some kind of Office automation solution, but ultimately I need this to extend to any file type with the summary information.

I found the dsofile.exe article, and it may end up being the best solution.  The more I think about it, the only way non-OLE files can have that information is through an ADS, and that is an NTFS feature added in Win2k, so that would explain the limitation the file describes.  I am trying to avoid a black box solution, but so far this is the easiest working solution.

I'm looking over the wrapper class that was posted at dotnet247, but I'm not too confident in it since the other posters seem like they had problems with it, but they may be trying to do something a little more than what I want.

Too bad this project didn't come to me later, I'm finding that the versions of .NET with the Longhorn Beta have a System.IO.CompoundFile namespace that has this functionality.  I think all of this stuff is way over my head, but I'm still trying.

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by:GohdanTheMoblin
ID: 12196674
I think I'm going to have to end up going with the dsofile solution.  Thanks for the help.
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