ber_get_stringa - Linux


ber_get_stringa retrieves a BER-encoded string of an arbitrary length. This command is commonly used to extract string-type attributes from BER-encoded messages (e.g., LDAP or ASN.1).


ber_get_stringa [options] <buffer> <offset>


  • -l, –length : Specify the maximum length of the string to retrieve.
  • -o, –offset : Specify the offset within the buffer to start retrieving the string. Default is 0.
  • -p, –pascal-string: Indicates that the string is encoded using a Pascal string encoding.
  • -t, –truncated: Do not generate an error if the string length exceeds the specified maximum.
  • -q, –quiet: Suppress any error messages.


Extract a string attribute from an LDAP search result:

ber_get_stringa -l 200 "cn" search_result.ber

Read a Pascal string encoded value from a file:

ber_get_stringa --pascal-string buffer.bin 5

Common Issues

  • Ensure that the provided buffer contains BER-encoded data.
  • If the specified maximum length is less than the actual string length, the truncated option can be used to retrieve a partial string.
  • If the string is not encoded as a Pascal string, the -p flag must be omitted.


ber_get_stringa can be used as part of scripts or in conjunction with other commands to parse BER-encoded data:

buffer=$(cat encoded_message.ber)
string=$(ber_get_stringa -l 500 "attribute" "$buffer")

Related Commands

  • ber_get_integer
  • ber_get_boolean
  • ber_decode