Ive got this cmdlet and I'd like to limit the results to only one OU:

Get-ADUser -Filter  {(Enabled -eq $false)} | ? { ($_.distinguishedname -notlike '*Disabled Users*') } 

Now Ive tried to use

-searchbase "ou=FirstOU,dc=domain,dc=com"

But if I use -SearchBase I get this error:

Where-Object : A parameter cannot be found that matches parameter name 'searchb
At line:1 char:114
+ Get-ADUser -Filter  {(Enabled -eq $false)} | ? { ($_.distinguishedname -notli
ke '*Disabled Users*') } -searchbase <<<<  "ou=FirstOU,dc=domain,dc=com"
    + CategoryInfo          : InvalidArgument: (:) [Where-Object], ParameterBi
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : NamedParameterNotFound,Microsoft.PowerShell.Comm

What Im trying to do is to get all the disabled users from a specific OU, BUT, there is an OU INSIDE that FirstOU that I want to exclude: the "Disabled Users" OU.

as you might have guessed I want to find disabled users in a specific OU that are not in the "Disabled Users" OU inside that OU.

my structure:

      Disabled Users OU

3 Answers 3


The -SearchBase parameter has to be used with Get-ADUser, not Where-Object (aliased by ?). This should work:

Get-ADUser -Filter {(Enabled -eq $false)} -SearchBase "ou=FirstOU,dc=domain,dc=com" | ? { ($_.distinguishedname -notlike '*Disabled Users*') }
  • 1
    -1 Most efficient method of searching only a single OU is using -SearchScope as in Thorfinn Thomassen's answer in this question. Using Where-Object makes the Get-AdUser return the nested OU as well whose contents should end up being all eliminated by end of processing.
    – user66001
    Mar 9, 2016 at 20:21
  • Also, your answer contains a subset of the same information as Hopelessn00b's answer. Suggest your answer be removed to avoid duplication.
    – user66001
    Mar 9, 2016 at 20:24

The easiest way to limit the search to one OU is using SearchScope:

Get-ADUser -Filter  {(Enabled -eq $false)} -SearchScope OneLevel -SearchBase "ou=FirstOU,dc=domain,dc=com"
  • +1 For use of SearchScope to limit search to that first OU, and not spend time parsing the nested one.
    – user66001
    Mar 9, 2016 at 20:25

Easiest way would be to put the -SearchBase before the -Filter.

Get-ADUser -searchbase "ou=FirstOU,dc=domain,dc=com" -Filter {(Enabled -eq $false)} | ? { ($_.distinguishedname -notlike '*Disabled Users*') }

Gets around the problem of having to use -SearchBase with Get-ADUser, and not Where-Object (? is aliased to Where-Object in PowerShell) by running the Where-Object after you've already passed your -SearchBase to Get-ADUser.

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