HOWTO?: Multidimensional Arrays


I am working on a script to loop through a series of .config files (XML) and replace an attribute value. I have this code working with an array containing a list of files to edit. I now would like to add a second part to the array to store the XML path of the attribute I want to edit.

For example:

File        XML Path                      Attribute Name
a.config    Configuration.Servers.Server  password
b.config    Configuration.Servers.Server  password
c.config    WSProcConfig                  SystemPassword

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My current code has the XML Path and Attribute Name hard coded as shown below:

$node = $xml.Configuration.Servers.Server
$node.password = $password

What I really would like to do is have the XML Path and Attribute Name retrieved from the array.

The question is this:
1. How do I format the array? My current array looks like this:
$ConfigFilesArray = @(

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2. How do I read each part of the array?

I looked at a hash table, however, that seems to require knowing the file to get the rest of the data. I am just not sure how all of that needs put together in the Powershell world.

Your help is appreciated.
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Qlemo"Batchelor", Developer and EE Topic AdvisorCommented:
You use an array of objects to do that. Using your original input format:
$ConfigFilesArray = @"
File	XML Path	Attribute Name
a.config	Configuration.Servers.Server	password
b.config	Configuration.Servers.Server	password
c.config	WSProcConfig	SystemPassword
"@ | convertFrom-CSV -del "`t"

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Now you can access each array attribute by its name. I'm only showing the important parts, XML file load and save are left to you.
$ConfigFilesArray | % {
  # ... get the XML file, name is $_.Name ...
  $xml.SelectSingleNode($_."XML Path" -replace '.', '/').($_."Attribute Name") = $password
  # ... and save ...

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Note that your XML Path is not really a path, and hence needs to get converted to one, and the spaces in property names force us to enclose their names either in double/single quotes or curly braces.

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ckelsoeAuthor Commented:
So if I understand, I can do this:

$ConfigFilesArray = @"
FilePath,XML Path, Attribute	
"@ | convertFrom-CSV

Foreach ($ConfigFile in $ConfigFilesArray)
	$ConfigFile # How do I get to each part of one row of the array? 

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I am just not sure how to get to the distinct items in each row.

As far as the XML - I am using the examples at which is why I have the path in dot format instead of slash format.
ckelsoeAuthor Commented:
Ok - this works. Not sure if it is the most efficient method but I can get to each part of the array.

function New-FileObject ($FilePath, $XMLPath, $AttributeName){
	New-Object PsObject -Property @{
		FilePath = $FilePath;
		XMLPath = $XMLPath;
		AttributeName = $AttributeName}

$ConfigFilesArray = @()
$ConfigFilesArray += New-FileObject "a.config" "Configuration.Servers.Server" "password"
$ConfigFilesArray += New-FileObject "b.config" "Configuration.Servers.Server" "password"
$ConfigFilesArray += New-FileObject "c.config" "WSProcConfig" "SystemPassword"

$ConfigFilesArray | ForEach-Object{
	Write-Host "The filepath is $($_.FilePath)"
	Write-Host "The XMLPath is $($_.XMLPath)"
	Write-Host "The Attribute is $($_.AttributeName)"

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Qlemo"Batchelor", Developer and EE Topic AdvisorCommented:
You can use your function to generate the object array, but it does nothing different from my way to set $ConfigFilesArray (the name of the properties are arbitrary).

I've shown you exactly how to access the properties and the XML data according to them.
ckelsoeAuthor Commented:
Thanks for your help.

It does look like there are two different syntax to get to the attribute - your way and the way I followed from the MSDN blog post. Since I have that part working I will leave it as is. I will follow your example fully to understand and learn that method in another similar project.
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