PowerShell/ISE

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This lesson introduces PowerShell ISE, the integrated scripting environment by examining the scripting environment, automatic code completion, and by creating simple scripts.

Objectives and Skills[edit]

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Modify execution policy settings to allow locally written scripts to run.
  • Understand cmdlet aliases.
  • Explain the difference between Write-Host and Write-Output.
  • Use Write-Output to display messages to the user.
  • Stop and start services using a PowerShell script.

Readings[edit]

  1. Wikipedia: Integrated development environment
  2. Wikipedia: Intelligent code completion
  3. Microsoft TechNet: Using the Windows PowerShell ISE
  4. BonusBits: Mastering PowerShell Chapter 2 - Interactive PowerShell

Multimedia[edit]

  1. YouTube: Microsoft Windows 8 First Look: Windows PowerShell
  2. Microsoft Virtual Academy: Advanced Tools & Scripting with PowerShell 3.0

Examples[edit]

Get-Alias[edit]

The Get-Alias cmdlet displays a list of current Windows PowerShell aliases.[1]

Get-Alias    # List current aliases.

Get-ExecutionPolicy[edit]

The Get-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet returns the current Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.[2]

Get-ExecutionPolicy    # Show the current PowerShell execution policy security level.

Set-ExecutionPolicy[edit]

The Set-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet sets the Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.[3]

Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned    # Set the current execution policy security level to RemoteSigned.

Start-Service[edit]

The Start-Service cmdlet starts a stopped service or services.[4] Starting services on Windows requires running PowerShell or the corresponding script as an administrator.

Start-Service 'Spooler'    # Start the Print Spooler service.

Stop-Service[edit]

The Stop-Service cmdlet stops a running service or services.[5] Stopping services on Windows requires running PowerShell or the corresponding script as an administrator.

Stop-Service 'Spooler'    # Stop the Print Spooler service.

Write-Host[edit]

The Write-Host cmdlet writes directly to the host environment, bypassing the pipeline.[6]

Write-Host 'Hello PowerShell!'

Write-Output[edit]

The Write-Output cmdlet writes to the pipeline.[7]

Write-Output 'Hello PowerShell!'

Comparing Write-Host and Write-Output[edit]

When there are no other commands in the pipeline, Write-Host and Write-Output appear functionally identical. The difference is clear, however, when the pipeline is used. To provide the most functionality for future use and automation of PowerShell scripts, Write-Output is the preferred output cmdlet.[8] The Get-Date cmdlet may be used to demonstrate the difference between Write-Host and Write-Output.

# This script demonstrates the difference between Write-Host and Write-Output

Write-Host '1/1/01' | Get-Date      # Displays 1/1/01 (no pipeline content).
Write-Output '1/1/01' | Get-Date    # Displays the formatted date.
'1/1/01' | Get-Date                 # Displays the formatted date.

Activities[edit]

  1. Review Microsoft TechNet: Using the Set-ExecutionPolicy Cmdlet. Change your local execution policy to RemoteSigned so that you can run your own local saved scripts.
  2. Review Microsoft TechNet: Using the Get-Alias Cmdlet. Display a list of all Windows PowerShell aliases.
  3. Review Microsoft TechNet: Using the Write-Host Cmdlet, Microsoft TechNet: Write-Output, and Microsoft TechNet: Using the Get-Date Cmdlet. Experiment with the different commands and the pipeline to ensure you understand the difference between Write-Host and Write-Output.
  4. Review Microsoft TechNet: Write-Output. Create a script that uses Write-Output to display your name. Try something like 'Hello Wikiversity!'. Add a comment at the top of the script that describes the purpose of the script. Then save the script as a file and experiment with running the script file using both PowerShell and PowerShell ISE.
  5. Review Microsoft TechNet: Using the Stop-Service Cmdlet and Microsoft TechNet: Using the Start-Service Cmdlet. Use Get-Service to get a list of running services. Then write a script that will stop and restart the Print Spooler service. Add a comment at the top of the script that describes the purpose of the script. Save the script as a file and experiment with running the script file using both PowerShell and PowerShell ISE.

Lesson Summary[edit]

  • An integrated development environment (IDE) or interactive development environment is a software application that provides comprehensive facilities to computer programmers for software development.[9]
  • An IDE normally consists of a source code editor, build automation tools and a debugger.[10]
  • Most modern IDEs offer Intelligent code completion features.[11]
  • Automatic code completion in PowerShell and PowerShell ISE is accomplished using the <Tab> key.[12]
  • Cmdlet parameters are automatically listed by entering the dash or hyphen (-) character and then using the <Tab> key to cycle through the list.[13]
  • New PowerShell tabs are created using the File menu.[14]
  • Remote PowerShell tabs may be created to establish a session on a remote computer.[15]
  • The PowerShell ISE console executes commands when you press <Enter>.[16]
  • Multiple commands may be executed together in the PowerShell ISE console in sequence by separating them using <Shift>+<Enter>.[17]
  • To stop a command in PowerShell ISE, on the toolbar, click Stop Operation, or press <Ctrl>+<Break>.[18]
  • The default Windows PowerShell execution policy setting is Restricted.[19]
  • PowerShell ISE script breakpoints can be set using Toggle Breakpoint or by pressing the <F9> key.[20]
  • PowerShell profiles may be established by configuring a PowerShell script to run automatically when you start a new PowerShell or PowerShell ISE session.[21]
  • Saved PowerShell scripts are run using a full or relative path. The relative path for a PowerShell script in the current directory would be .\script.ps1.[22]
  • The Get-Alias cmdlet displays a list of current Windows PowerShell aliases.[23]
  • The Get-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet returns the current Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.[24]
  • The Set-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet sets the Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.[25]
  • The Start-Service cmdlet starts a stopped service or services.[26]
  • The Stop-Service cmdlet stops a running service or services.[27]
  • Starting and stopping services on Windows requires running PowerShell or the corresponding script as an administrator.
  • The Write-Host cmdlet writes directly to the host environment, bypassing the pipeline.[28]
  • The Write-Output cmdlet writes to the pipeline.[29]

Key Terms[edit]

breakpoint
An intentional stopping or pausing place in a program, put in place for debugging purposes.[30]
debugging
A methodical process of finding and reducing the number of bugs, or defects, in a computer program or a piece of electronic hardware, thus making it behave as expected.[31]

Review Questions[edit]

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Click on a question to see the answer.
1. An integrated development environment (IDE) or interactive development environment is a _____.
An integrated development environment (IDE) or interactive development environment is a software application that provides comprehensive facilities to computer programmers for software development.
2. An IDE normally consists of _____.
An IDE normally consists of a source code editor, build automation tools and a debugger.
3. Most modern IDEs offer _____.
Most modern IDEs offer Intelligent code completion features.
4. Automatic code completion in PowerShell and PowerShell ISE is accomplished using the _____ key.
Automatic code completion in PowerShell and PowerShell ISE is accomplished using the <Tab> key.
5. Cmdlet parameters are automatically listed by entering the _____ character and then using the _____ key to cycle through the list.
Cmdlet parameters are automatically listed by entering the dash or hyphen (-) character and then using the <Tab> key to cycle through the list.
6. New PowerShell tabs are created using the _____ menu.
New PowerShell tabs are created using the File menu.
7. Remote PowerShell tabs may be created to _____.
Remote PowerShell tabs may be created to establish a session on a remote computer.
8. The PowerShell ISE console executes commands when you press _____.
The PowerShell ISE console executes commands when you press <Enter>.
9. Multiple commands may be executed together in the PowerShell ISE console in sequence by separating them using _____.
Multiple commands may be executed together in the PowerShell ISE console in sequence by separating them using <Shift>+<Enter>.
10. To stop a command in PowerShell ISE, on the toolbar, click _____, or press _____.
To stop a command in PowerShell ISE, on the toolbar, click Stop Operation, or press <Ctrl>+<Break>.
11. The default Windows PowerShell execution policy setting is _____.
The default Windows PowerShell execution policy setting is Restricted.
12. PowerShell ISE script breakpoints can be set using _____ or by pressing the _____ key.
PowerShell ISE script breakpoints can be set using Toggle Breakpoint or by pressing the <F9> key.
13. PowerShell profiles may be established by _____.
PowerShell profiles may be established by configuring a PowerShell script to run automatically when you start a new PowerShell or PowerShell ISE session.
14. Saved PowerShell scripts are run using _____.
Saved PowerShell scripts are run using a full or relative path. The relative path for a PowerShell script in the current directory would be .\script.ps1.
15. The Get-Alias cmdlet _____.
The Get-Alias cmdlet displays a list of current Windows PowerShell aliases.
16. The Get-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet _____.
The Get-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet returns the current Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.
17. The Set-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet _____.
The Set-ExecutionPolicy cmdlet sets the Windows PowerShell execution policy security level.
18. The Start-Service cmdlet _____.
The Start-Service cmdlet starts a stopped service or services.
19. The Stop-Service cmdlet _____.
The Stop-Service cmdlet stops a running service or services.
20. Starting and stopping services on Windows requires _____.
Starting and stopping services on Windows requires running PowerShell or the corresponding script as an administrator.
21. The Write-Host cmdlet _____.
The Write-Host cmdlet writes directly to the host environment, bypassing the pipeline.
22. The Write-Output cmdlet _____.
The Write-Output cmdlet writes to the pipeline.

Assessments[edit]

See Also[edit]

References[edit]

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  1. Microsoft TechNet: Get-Alias
  2. Microsoft TechNet: Get-ExecutionPolicy
  3. Microsoft TechNet: Set-ExecutionPolicy
  4. Microsoft TechNet: Start-Service
  5. Microsoft TechNet: Stop-Service
  6. Microsoft TechNet: Write-Host
  7. Microsoft TechNet: Write-Output
  8. Jeffrey Snover's blog: Write-Host Considered Harmful
  9. Wikipedia: Integrated development environment
  10. Wikipedia: Integrated development environment
  11. Wikipedia: Integrated development environment
  12. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use Tab Completion
  13. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use Tab Completion
  14. Microsoft TechNet: How to Create a PowerShell Tab in Windows PowerShell ISE
  15. Microsoft TechNet: How to Create a PowerShell Tab in Windows PowerShell ISE
  16. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use the Console Pane in the Windows PowerShell ISE
  17. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use the Console Pane in the Windows PowerShell ISE
  18. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use the Console Pane in the Windows PowerShell ISE
  19. Microsoft TechNet: How to Write and Run Scripts in the Windows PowerShell ISE
  20. Microsoft TechNet: How to Debug Scripts in Windows PowerShell ISE
  21. Microsoft TechNet: How to Use Profiles in Windows PowerShell ISE
  22. PowerShell.com: Master-PowerShell | With Dr. Tobias Weltner - Chapter 2. Interactive PowerShell
  23. Microsoft TechNet: Get-Alias
  24. Microsoft TechNet: Get-ExecutionPolicy
  25. Microsoft TechNet: Set-ExecutionPolicy
  26. Microsoft TechNet: Start-Service
  27. Microsoft TechNet: Stop-Service
  28. Microsoft TechNet: Write-Host
  29. Microsoft TechNet: Write-Output
  30. Wikipedia: Breakpoint
  31. Wikipedia: Debugging