PowerShell Fluency Worth the Learning Curve
By Bill Kenealy
Sometimes to get where you are going you have to avoid the easy road. Such is the case for those questioning whether they need training for Microsoft's latest version of its configuration management framework PowerShell, says David Cobb. A noted development expert, systems architect and technology consultant, Cobb says the expanding capabilities of PowerShell coupled with its increasingly centralized position in the Microsoft technology stack make learning it a must for developers.
"Whether you are working with SQL, SharePoint or Exchange, anything and everything we do as IT professionals within the Microsoft world is going to involve PowerShell," Cobb says.
In a recent Webinar, Cobb delves deep into the new wrinkles present in PowerShell 5.0, which was released in February. Still featuring a split-screen command-line shell and scripting environment, PowerShell 5.0 has made it easier for developers to import and share code from existing, predefined module repositories as well as from code repositories available on their own machines. Cobb says tighter integration with open-source package manager NuGet is a particularly welcome advance in the new version. "If you need to add more modules, a really great feature in PS5 is the integration with NuGet," he says, noting that applications that are easily configured and managed using PowerShell are also amenable to automation, making them a good fit for cloud deployment.
In addition to developers, IT and server administrators may also benefit from a deeper understanding of PowerShell as Microsoft continues to nudge users to install Windows Server without a graphical interface. It is this underlying versatility of PowerShell and its increasing ubiquity in a broad range of technology platforms that makes proper training essential, Cobb says, adding that a growing library of PowerShell tools and modules are now available on the web.
"You are going to find that if you invest the time in learning PowerShell, you are going to be able to take advantage of tools that are freely available to maximize your productivity," he says. "You can script and automate tasks that are tedious, repetitive or error prone."
Bill Kenealy is a copywriter and blogger specializing in enterprise technologies. A graduate of the University of Kansas with a degree in journalism, Bill has 15 years of experience reporting on business and IT. Bill recently relocated to the Twin Cities and enjoys travel and exploring his new home state with his wife. He enjoys reading, PC gaming and watching football by himself.