Assembly to Type Library Conversion Summary

Assemblies provide the common language runtime with the information it needs to be aware of type implementations. Type libraries do the same for COM types. COM clients cannot access type information from an assembly directly; instead, assembly, module, type, parameter, and field representations must first be exported from the assembly to a type library.

The .NET Framework provides both tools and an API to perform assembly to type library conversion. Although you have several mechanisms for generating a type library, each produces the same results. For simplicity, this section describes only the Type Library Exporter (Tlbexp.exe) tool in conjunction with the conversion rules for exporting type information. For a description of alternative mechanisms for exporting an assembly, see Packaging an Assembly for COM.

Since type libraries cannot accommodate all the information found in assemblies, the conversion process might discard some data during the export process. This section explains those transformations and identifies the source of each piece of information exported to the resulting type library.

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