Get-Learning : Why PowerShell?

As the first installment in this series, I want to go back to the topic I wrote on in my very first blog post back in 2009. In that post, I talked about why PowerShell (1.0) was something that I was interested enough in to start blogging.

Many of the points I mentioned there are still relevant, so I’ll repeat them now. Here are some of the things that made PowerShell awesome to me in 2009:

  • Ability to work with multiple technologies in a seamless fashion (.NET, WMI, AD, COM)
  • Dynamic code for quick scripting, strongly-typed code for production code (what Bruce Payette calls “type-promiscuous”)
  • High-level language constructs (functions, objects)
  • Consistent syntax
  • Interactive environment (REPL loop)
  • Discoverable properties/functions/etc.
  • Great variety of delivered cmdlets, even greater variety of community cmdlets and scripts
  • On a similar note, a fantastic community that shares results and research
  • Extensible type system
  • Everything is an object
  • Powerful (free) tools like PowerGUI, PSCX, PowerShell WMI Explorer, PowerTab, PrimalForms Community Edition, and many, many more. (ok…I don’t use any of these anymore)
  • Easy embedding in .NET apps including custom hosts.
  • The most stable, well-thought out version 1.0 product I’ve ever seen MicroSoft produce.
  • An extremely involved, encouraging community..

Of those things, the only ones that aren’t very relevant are the “free tools” (those tools aren’t relevant, but there are a lot of other new, free ones), and the 1.0 comment.

Since it’s been almost 11 years now, instead of talking about 1.0, let’s talk about now.

Microsoft, has placed PowerShell at the focus of its automation strategy. Instead of being an powerful tool which has a passionate community, it now is a central tool behind nearly everything that is managed on the Windows platform. And given the imminent release of PowerShell core, it will soon be (officially) available on OSX and Linux to provide some cross-platform functionality for those who want it. In 2009 you could leverage PowerShell to get more stuff done. Now, in 2017 you can’t get much done without touching PowerShell.

Finally, PowerShell is a part of so many solutions now, including most (all?) of the management UIs and APIs coming out of Microsoft in the last several years. Microsoft is relying on PowerShell to be a significant part of their products. Other companies are doing the same, delivering PowerShell modules along with their products. They do this because it is a proven system for powerful automation.

Why PowerShell? Because it’s awesome.

Why PowerShell? Because it’s everywhere.

Why PowerShell? Because it’s proven.

And my final point, which hasn’t changed since I talked about it in 2009 is that PowerShell is fun!

Are you looking to start your PowerShell learning journey? Maybe you have already started and are looking for pointers. Perhaps you’ve got quite a bit of experience and you just want to fill in some gaps.

Follow along with me and get-learning!

–Mike

2 Comments

  1. Pingback: Dew Drop - October 20, 2017 (#2586) - Morning Dew

  2. Been coding for about 8-9 months now. Started writing my advanced functions in a “toolmaker” fashion. Trying to progress as much as possible. Maybe not at a Software Dev level, but enough to bring a DevOps atmosphere into my Sysadmin role.

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