returning message within data from ajax post

                type: "POST",
                url: passUrl + "/RTOSaveJsonData",
                contentType: 'application/json; charset=utf-8',
                data: JSON.stringify(DTO),
                dataType: "json",
                async: false,
                success: function (data, textStatus, xmlHttpRequest) {
                    alert('success ');
                error: function(xhr, textStatus, error){

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In my webservice, I want to return a message as to if the result was a success or if an error was found. Evidently $.post includes a success callback but not one for errors (according to forum post I read). So I would like to display any errors in the alert or on the screen.

In the above, I want to display the value I return, which is a string value and I assume somewhere within "data" but I don't know how to get the value I returned from within "data" to display to the screen as an alert or displayed on the screen.

I did try the above alert(data); and it just returns Object object.
I tried this:

and nothing displays in my div tag:
   <div id="postResults"></div>

My message might be something like this: "Failure: you must have a user name."  So it's pretty simple.

Any suggestions for how to get that message out of the data that was returned?

Starr DuskkASP.NET VB.NET DeveloperAsked:
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zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
try:  console.log(data)

Put this as the first line in your success function (for testing only -- remove it after you're done working on this problem).
This will show you the structure of the json object being returned.  You will need to look at the console of your web browser dev tool in order to see the log.  In Chrome, you can right click on the page and select Inspect element, in IE press F12 and in Firefox you can use Firebug.  All of these tools have a tab called console, and that's where you want to look.

We know it's json because you have:

dataType: "json"

P.S.  My guess is that you can access you string by doing alert(data.d), but the console log will confirm the structure of the object.

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Starr DuskkASP.NET VB.NET DeveloperAuthor Commented:
Thanks for teaching me how to fish!!!
Best advice all day!
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