All posts by Thomas Rayner

19Sep/18

Editing An Azure DevOps Build Definition From Within The Build

It’s been a little while since I’ve managed to get a blog post out! Not to worry, though, as I’ve been nice and busy. One of the things I’ve been working on lately is writing a VSTS- I mean Azure DevOps extension.

The extension I’m working on will, among other things, need to update the build definition of the build that it’s currently building. Why? Because I’m incrementing a version number that’s stored in a build variable, which is part of the build definition. Here’s how I’m doing it.

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15Aug/18

PowerHour: PowerShell Lightning Demos

If you haven’t been to the PowerShell & DevOps Global Summit, let me tell you that the lightning demos are an ultra fun and informative part of the conference. It’s so cool to see what other people are doing with PowerShell that you’d never think of because it’s not what you’re used to working on. I love the fact that PowerShell is so many places, with so much flexibility, that it creates countless opportunities for interesting, meaningful projects.

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01Aug/18

Find Me At Techmentor For A Free Sticker

Are you going to be at Techmentor Redmond next week? I will be! You can catch me at my workshop on Monday and learn some Master Powershell tricks, or at my session on Tuesday to learn to write code that doesn’t suck. I’ll also be hanging around the rest of the conference, dinner events, and other people’s sessions.

I’d love to meet you! Say hi and I’ll give you a sticker (while supplies last).

25Jul/18

Working With Azure Automation From The PowerShell AzureRM CLI

Back in March, I had the opportunity to link up with Microsoft Cloud Advocate Damian Brady and record an episode of The DevOps Lab. We chatted a little bit about the MVP Summit and being an MVP (which I am no longer, since I’ve joined Microsoft as an employee), and then get down to business administering Azure Automation purely through the AzureRM PowerShell module.

Check out the recording, below!

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18Jul/18

Finding Out When A PowerShell Cmdlet Was Introduced

In the PowerShell Slack (invite yourself at bit.ly/psslack), there was a very brief debate over when the Expand-Archive cmdlet was introduced to PowerShell. This is absolutely information that can be found online, but there’s a few different ways.

Some cmdlets have this information built into the help, some share this information in the online docs. Since the core cmdlets documentation are open sourced and on GitHub, however, you can go straight to the source and quickly answer this question for yourself.

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04Jul/18

I was re-awarded as a Microsoft MVP, but I’m leaving the program

On July 1, I was notified that I was I was re-awarded as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP)! Being an MVP is an enormous privilege, and has been a huge benefit to me professionally. If you’re not familiar with the MVP Program, it’s basically an award given to independent technologists who share technical knowledge with the community. That might mean blogging, public speaking, creating videos, being active on social media, answering questions on technical forums, or lots of other things.

In addition to a cool glass trophy, being an MVP comes with a bunch of other perks like an MSDN subscription, an O365 license, Azure credits, and other assorted swag and gifts. The biggest benefit by far, though, is access to NDA-protected mailing lists, and the networking opportunities to connect with other MVPs and full time Microsoft employees.

This is my fourth MVP award, and since April 2015, I’ve had the distinct pleasure of getting to know the most incredible people, mentor others, be mentored, influence the products Microsoft makes, and share thousands of hours of effort in the form of books, blog posts, public speaking, and other ways of giving back to the community that’s helped me so much. Through being an MVP, I’ve met great people who have helped me in my career tremendously. I’m grateful to all of them.

On that note, as of July 9, 2018, I won’t be eligible for the MVP program any more and therefore will have to give up my status as an MVP.

One of the conditions for being a Microsoft MVP is that you aren’t a Microsoft employee. This spring, I accepted a position at Microsoft as a Senior Security Service Engineer, and will be starting on Monday, July 9! I’ll be joining an immensely talented team doing fascinating work, applying my skills in the area of scripting and automation, and helping guide their growing DevOps habits.

I couldn’t possibly be more excited.

As a small note, I’ll be relocating to the Seattle area this summer, and getting my feet under me in this new position, so the weekly streak of blog posts I’ve been able to uphold for over a year is likely to be interrupted. I’ll still be posting, but perhaps not quite as frequently. Just because I’m not going to be an MVP any more doesn’t mean I’m not still committed to sharing information and helping the technical community any way I can.

27Jun/18

Quick Tip: See All The Tab-Completion Options At Once In The PowerShell Console

If you’re used to working in VS Code or the PowerShell ISE, you’ve undoubtedly enjoyed intellisense which is the feature that shows you all the tab completion options at once. That functionality is really handy, but what if you’re in the PowerShell console? The little overlayed windows don’t pop up there with your completion options. You can still tab through until you find what you want, but it’s not the same.

Don’t worry, there’s a PSReadline feature that will save you here.

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20Jun/18

Quick Tip: Split A PowerShell Collection Into Two Arrays

Did you know that you can use Where-Object to split a collection into two arrays? Like, if you had an array containing the numbers 1 to 10, you could split it into one array of even numbers, and another array of odd numbers? It’s pretty cool. Thanks Herb Meyerowitz for this tip!

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