What Is Scripting Dictionary in VBScript?


Larry Thompson

Scripting Dictionary in VBScript

When it comes to working with data in VBScript, the Scripting Dictionary is an incredibly useful tool. It allows you to store and manipulate data in a key-value pair format, making it easy to access and modify information as needed.

What is a Scripting Dictionary?

A Scripting Dictionary, also known as a dictionary object, is a collection that stores data in key-value pairs. Each value is associated with a unique key, allowing you to retrieve and manipulate the data using the keys. This makes it particularly useful for managing large amounts of data efficiently.

Why use a Scripting Dictionary?

The Scripting Dictionary offers several advantages over other data structures available in VBScript:

  • Fast retrieval: Since the values are stored using keys, accessing data in a dictionary is very fast.
  • Flexible keys: Unlike arrays where keys must be numeric, dictionaries allow you to use any type of value as a key (string, number, or even objects).
  • Dynamic size: Dictionaries can grow or shrink dynamically as items are added or removed.
  • No duplicate keys: A dictionary does not allow duplicate keys. If you try to add an item with an existing key, it will overwrite the previous value.

Creating a Scripting Dictionary

To create a new instance of the Scripting Dictionary object, use the following syntax:

Set dict = CreateObject("Scripting.Dictionary")

This creates an empty dictionary that you can populate with key-value pairs.

Adding Items to the Dictionary

Adding items to a dictionary is straightforward. You can use the Add method to specify a key and its associated value:

dict.Add "key1", "value1"
dict.Add "key2", "value2"

The keys can be of any data type, as long as they are unique within the dictionary.

Retrieving Items from the Dictionary

To retrieve an item from the dictionary, you can use its key in combination with the Item property:

value = dict.Item("key1")

This will assign the value associated with “key1” to the variable value.

Modifying Items in the Dictionary

If you need to modify an item in the dictionary, you can simply assign a new value to its key:

dict("key1") = "new value"

This will update the value associated with “key1”. If the key does not exist, it will be added as a new item.

Removing Items from the Dictionary

To remove an item from a dictionary, you can use the Remove method and specify its key:


This will remove the item with “key2” from the dictionary. If the key does not exist, no action is taken.


The Scripting Dictionary in VBScript provides a powerful and flexible way to store and manipulate data. Its ability to quickly retrieve information by using keys makes it an excellent choice when working with large datasets. With its dynamic size and support for various key types, it offers a convenient solution for managing data efficiently.

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