Category Archives: PowerShell

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!

Continue reading

06Jun/18

A Year Of Weekly Blog Posts – Lessons Learned

With this post, I’ve got a new post up on this blog every Wednesday morning for a year. I’m pretty proud of that! There are certainly more prolific bloggers out there, especially in this space, but for me, this is quite the accomplishment. This is weekly consecutive blog post number 53.

In celebration of getting through a full year of weekly blog posts on topics of PowerShell, DevOps, automation and IT strategy, in this post I’ll share some of the lessons I’ve learned. This isn’t a big list of everything you need to know to blog, or even things that might work for you, but just things I’ve learned about blogging over the last year.

Continue reading

30May/18

New in PowerShell 6: Positive And Negative Parameter Validation

If you’ve written at least a couple of advanced PowerShell functions, you’re probably no stranger to parameter validation. These are the attributes you attach to parameters to make sure that they match a certain regular expression using [ValidatePattern()], or that when they are plugged into a certain script, that it evaluates to true using [ValidateScript({})]. You’ve probably also used [ValidateRange()] to make sure a number falls between a min and a max value that you specified.

In PowerShell 6, though, there’s something new and cool you can do with ValidateRange. You can specify in a convenient new syntax that the value must be positive or negative.

Continue reading

16May/18

Script Share: Disable Azure AD MFA Without Wiping User Options

How’s this for a niche topic? If you want to move to Azure AD P2 Conditional Access and have users who are on P1 MFA, then in order to move them over, you have to disable and re-enable MFA on their account – or at least that’s what one PFE told me. The problem is, when you do that, you lose their options like if they prefer to enter a code from the app, receive a text, etc. by default. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could keep that stuff?

Well, you can!

Continue reading

09May/18

A Crash Course In Building Your Own PSScriptAnalyzer Rules – My PowerShell & DevOps Global Summit Session Recording

I had the pleasure of presenting a session at the PowerShell and DevOps Global Summit in Bellevue in April 2018 and the session recordings went live last week. My session was titled A Crash Course in Building Your Own PSScriptAnalyzer Rules and it’s a pretty fast 45 minutes. I’ve been getting lots of wonderful feedback on it, so if this is something you might be into, please give the recording a watch! It’s easier than you might think.

Click here if the embedded video doesn’t work: https://youtu.be/_T8wLsbTWJY

02May/18

Forcing A Non-Terminating Error To Be Displayed In PowerShell

In full disclosure, this post contains information that a user experience expert might frown at. I’m not really sure, since I’m not a user experience expert. I do know a lot about PowerShell, however, and that’s really what this post is about.

Say you have users of your scripts and modules who might have their $ErrorActionPreference set to SilentlyContinue or maybe you know for a fact that your code explicitly sets it that way. That’s probably another thing that will make the user experience pros mad but here you are anyway. Let’s just say that your stakeholders FORCED you to do it. What happens if you absolutely need to, have to, must display a non-terminating error, such as those you create with Write-Error? Here’s one option.

Continue reading

25Apr/18

Writing Your Own Custom VSCode Snippets

If you’ve seen any of the recent talks from Microsoft employees and MVPs about PowerShell, it’s hard to miss that Visual Studio Code (VS Code/VSCode) is the new hot place to be writing your PowerShell code. VSCode with the PowerShell extension is the current Microsoft-recommended coding environment, whereas it used to be PowerShell ISE. ISE isn’t dead (there are lots of posts on that), it’s just considered to be complete, and all current development effort is focused on VSCode.

Great! Well, one of the things I like in my editor is my own custom snippets. I don’t have very many, but I use the ones I have pretty often. Here’s how to make one in VSCode.

Continue reading

28Mar/18

April Fools PowerShell Prank: Write With All The Colors Of The Rainbow

Sometimes Write-Host gets a bad reputation. Lots of people will repeat inflammatory rhetoric that “Write-Host” kills puppies, and so on, but the only real problem with Write-Host is that people use it without knowing what it’s for. Write-Host is for writing to the console and only the console.

Other cmdlets like Write-Output are for writing to standard output which might be the console, or could be somewhere else down the pipeline. Write-Host‘s output can’t be redirected to a log file, isn’t useful in unattended execution scenarios, and can’t be piped into another command. Lots of people who are new to PowerShell get into a habit of using Write-Host when they probably should have used Write-Output or something else instead. If you have someone you’re trying to train to stop using Write-Host when it’s not needed, consider this prank, just in time for April Fools Day.

Continue reading