I am creating a tool that opens an IGxDialog which it's objects are filtered to show only workspaces, my question is how can I convert IGxObject to IWorkSpace or get the selected workspace without taking the selected object name and opening it using an IWorkSpaceFactory

3 Answers 3


This code works for geodatabases, but I haven't figured out how to get a workspace for a shapefile using this method

Private Sub GetWorkspace()

    Dim pEnumGxObj As ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.IEnumGxObject
    Dim pFCFilter As New ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.GxFilterWorkspaces
    Dim pGxDatabase As ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.IGxDatabase2
    Dim pGxDialog As New ESRI.ArcGIS.CatalogUI.GxDialog
    Dim pGxObject As ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.IGxObject
    Dim pWorkspace As ESRI.ArcGIS.Geodatabase.IWorkspace

    pGxDialog.ObjectFilter = pFCFilter

    If Not pGxDialog.DoModalOpen(My.ArcMap.Application.hWnd, pEnumGxObj) Then Exit Sub

    pGxObject = pEnumGxObj.Next

    If pGxObject Is Nothing Then Exit Sub
        If TypeOf pGxObject Is ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.IGxDatabase2 Then
            pGxDatabase = pGxObject
            pWorkspace = pGxDatabase.Workspace
            System.Windows.Forms.MessageBox.Show("This is likely a shapefile workspace")
        End If

    Catch ex As Exception
        System.Windows.Forms.MessageBox.Show(ex.ToString, "GetWorkspace")

    End Try
End Sub


                ESRI.ArcGIS.Catalog.IGxDataset gxDataset; //Declare IgxDataset
                gxDataset = (IGxDataset)gxObj; //cast IgxObject to IgxDataset
                ESRI.ArcGIS.Geodatabase.IDataset gDataset;//Declare IDataset
                gDataset = gxDataset.Dataset; //IGxDataset to IDataset
                ESRI.ArcGIS.Geodatabase.IWorkspace gxWorkspace; //Declare workspace
                gxWorkspace = gDataset.Workspace; //IDataset to IWorkspace

The order is IGxObject > IGxDataset > IDataset > IWorkspace.

  • When setting the IGxDialog filter to show only workspaces, you'll get an error when trying to cast the IGxObject as an IGxDataset.
    – kenbuja
    May 7, 2013 at 21:04
  • Yes. However, the above code will properly provide the workspace when IGxObject is a shapefile. I have edited my answer accordingly. Perhaps a combination of our two implementations may best suit the original poster.
    – Conor
    May 7, 2013 at 23:13
  • I tried this thing before, and it gives me an InvalidCastException when trying to cast the IGxObject (which I've selected a workspace) to IGxDataset
    – Seem
    May 8, 2013 at 6:14

This one works for me. It is tested for file geodatabase, personal geodatabase.

//enumGxObject = output of IGxDialogue
IWorkspace GetWorkspace(IEnumGxObject enumGxObject)
    IGxObject gxObject;
    while ((gxObject = enumGxObject.Next()) != null)
        Catalog.IGxDatabase2 gxDatabase;
        if ((gxDatabase = gxObject as IGxDatabase2) != null)
           return gxDatabase.Workspace;
           return GetShapeFileWorkspace(gxObject);
    return null;

Edit: added code will check shape file workspace and will return shape file workspace.

bool IsShapeFileWorkspace(IGxObject gxObject)
    if((gxObject as GxShapefileDataset) == null)
        return false;
    return true;

IWorkspace GetShapeFileWorkspace(IGxObject gxObject)
    var gxFolder = gxObject as Catalog.IGxFolder;
    var iName = FileSystemWorkspaceNames.Next();
    return iName.Open() as IWorkspace;

I hope it will work for u too.

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