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Get-Acl

Updated: April 21, 2010

Applies To: Windows PowerShell 2.0

Gets the security descriptor for a resource, such as a file or registry key.

Syntax

Get-Acl [[-Path] <string[]>] [-Audit] [-Exclude <string[]>] [-Filter <string>] [-Include <string[]>] [-UseTransaction] [<CommonParameters>]

Description

The Get-Acl cmdlet gets objects that represent the security descriptor of a file or resource. The security descriptor contains the access control lists (ACLs) of the resource. The ACL specifies the permissions that users and user groups have to access the resource.

Parameters

-Audit

Gets the audit data for the security descriptor from the system access control list (SACL).

 

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Exclude <string[]>

Omits the specified items. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. Enter a path element or pattern, such as "*.txt". Wildcards are permitted.

 

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Filter <string>

Specifies a filter in the provider's format or language. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. The syntax of the filter, including the use of wildcards, depends on the provider. Filters are more efficient than other parameters, because the provider applies them when retrieving the objects, rather than having Windows PowerShell filter the objects after they are retrieved.

 

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Include <string[]>

Retrieves only the specified items. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. Enter a path element or pattern, such as "*.txt". Wildcards are permitted.

 

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Path <string[]>

Specifies the path to a resource. Get-Acl gets the security descriptor of the resource indicated by the path. Wildcards are permitted. If you omit the Path parameter, Get-Acl gets the security descriptor of the current directory.

The parameter name ("Path") is optional.

 

Required?

false

Position?

1

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

true (ByValue, ByPropertyName)

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-UseTransaction

Includes the command in the active transaction. This parameter is valid only when a transaction is in progress. For more information, see about_Transactions.

 

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

<CommonParameters>

This command supports the common parameters: Verbose, Debug, ErrorAction, ErrorVariable, OutBuffer, OutVariable, WarningAction, and WarningVariable. For more information, see about_CommonParameters.

Inputs and Outputs

The input type is the type of the objects that you can pipe to the cmdlet. The return type is the type of the objects that the cmdlet returns.

 

Inputs

System.String

You can pipe a string that contains a path to Get-Acl.

Outputs

System.Security.AccessControl

Get-Acl returns an object that represents the ACLs that it gets. The object type depends upon the ACL type.

Notes

By default, Get-Acl displays the Windows PowerShell path to the resource (<provider>::<resource-path>), the owner of the resource, and "Access", a list (array) of the access control entries in the discretionary access control list (DACL) for the resource. The DACL list is controlled by the resource owner.

When you format the result as a list, ("get-acl | Format-List"), in addition to the path, owner, and access list, Windows PowerShell displays the following fields:

-- Group: The security group of the owner.

-- Audit: A list (array) of entries in the system access control list (SACL). The SACL specifies the types of access attempts for which Windows generates audit records.

-- Sddl: The security descriptor of the resource displayed in a single text string in Security Descriptor Definition Language format. Windows PowerShell uses the GetSddlForm method of security descriptors to retrieve this data.

Because Get-Acl is supported by the file system and registry providers, you can use Get-Acl to view the ACL of file system objects, such as files and directories, and registry objects, such as registry keys and entries.

Example 1

C:\PS>get-acl C:\windows

Description

-----------

This command gets the security descriptor of the C:Windows directory.

Example 2

C:\PS>get-acl C:\Windows\k*.log | format-list -property PSPath, Sddl

Description

-----------

This command gets the Windows PowerShell path and SDDL for all of the .log files in the C:\Windows directory whose names begin with "k."

The command uses Get-Acl to get objects representing the security descriptors of each log file. It uses a pipeline operator (|) to send the results to the Format-List cmdlet. The command uses the Property parameter of Format-List to display only the PsPath and SDDL properties of each security descriptor object.

Lists are often used in Windows PowerShell, because long values appear truncated in tables.

The SDDL values are valuable to system administrators, because they are simple text strings that contain all of the information in the security descriptor. As such, they are easy to pass and store, and they can be parsed when needed.

Example 3

C:\PS>get-ACL c:/windows/k*.log -Audit | foreach-object { $_.Audit.Count }

Description

-----------

This command gets the security descriptors of the .log files in the C:\Windows directory whose names begin with "k." It uses the Audit parameter to retrieve the audit records from the SACL in the security descriptor. Then it uses the For-EachObject parameter to count the number of audit records associated with each file. The result is a list of numbers representing the number of audit records for each log file.

Example 4

C:\PS>get-acl -path hklm:\system\currentcontrolset\control | format-list

Description

-----------

This command uses Get-Acl to get the security descriptor of the Control subkey (HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control) of the registry.

The Path parameter specifies the Control subkey. The pipeline operator (|) passes the security descriptor that Get-Acl retrieves to the Format-List command, which formats the properties of the security descriptor as a list so that they are easy to read.

See Also

Concepts

Set-Acl

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