Operational attributes are attributes which the directory organizes for internal use. Normally such attributes are not returned to an LDAP client in a standard request for object data. If an LDAP browser wants to see these attributes, it has to request them explicitly.
For LEX, it's easy to see and display operational attributes, because LEX evaluates the LDAP directory schema of the regarding server, so all the possible attributes of each object are known and ar requested from the server - including the operational attributes. In most environments, you see this characteristic in the attribute list: Look for an 'x' in the column 'Op':
They are also shown in each standalone attribute window:
Please note that in Active Directory environments, the operational attributes are not marked clearly in the schema definitions. You have to look for the 'R/O' column here.
If you don't see these additional columns at all, then LEX maybe could not evaluate the LDAP directory schema for some reason. In this case, you might not see all the operational attributes.
When you deactivate the directory schema usage in the attribute output, then the operational attributes will not show up neither. You can set this configuration in Tools - Options - LDAP Settings - Use directory schema to request object attributes.
Operational attributes are specified and described officially in RFC
4512 in paragraph 3.4 (Operational Attributes).
Particularly this specification enumerates the following attributes,
which can be encountered in all sorts of directory services:
creatorsName: The object's creator, unfortunately not implemented in ADS environments
createTimestamp: Date and time when the object was created
modifiersName: Tthe account which last altered the object, unfortunately not implemented in ADS environments
modifyTimestamp: Date and time when the object was last modified
You can only evaluate the set of operational attributes if you check the schema of the regarding directory services.