PowerShell for Windows Admins

May 11, 2016  12:03 PM

Cloud Native Applications

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
Books, Cloud Computing

Cloud Native Applications is a collection of hand-picked chapters presenting five topics that will give you insights into the world of cloud computing.  The link is here: http://bit.ly/1T46wP7

This is excellent value – its FREE.

You’ll find chapters on:

Amazon Web Services






May 5, 2016  12:12 PM

PowerShell and Nano server

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
Powershell, Windows Server 2016

Nano server is the new install option introduced with Windows 2016. It has a really tiny footprint compared to a server core machine.

Of course it has PowerShell but its not a complete port of the PowerShell you’re used to. The features that aren’t present are detailed here:


What you get is PowerShell re-written for .NET core

If you want to develop your own cmdlets try this article to get you started:


May 2, 2016  7:45 AM

Loading assemblies

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway

PowerShell is .NET based but doesn’t load all available .NET assemblies when it starts.

Many people still use something  like


to load additional assemblies.  This is a hang over from PowerShell v1 when there wasn’t another way to perform the load.

The LoadWithPartialName method has been deprecated – https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/12xc5368(v=vs.110).aspx – and shouldn’t be used.

Your alternatives are:

Add-Type -AssemblyName System.Windows.Forms

or in PowerShell v5

using assembly System.Windows.Forms

using namespace System.Windows.Forms

can be used

April 29, 2016  1:25 PM

Free ebook: IoT

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
e-books, iot

A free ebook from Manning: Using the Web to Build the IoT is a collection of six hand-picked chapters that introduce the key technologies and concepts for building the application layer of the IoT.  The page is here: http://bit.ly/1SUJW0P

April 29, 2016  5:13 AM

WinOps conference

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
DevOps, Powershell

The WinOps conference is dedicated to ‘Windows in a DevOps World’  Its in London 24 May 2016. I’ll be speaking as will Jeffrey Snover and Ed Wilson of Microsoft.

More details from http://winops.org/

Hope to see you there

April 28, 2016  3:19 AM

Windows Server 2016 TP5 Cumulative Update

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
Windows Server 2016

An update – KB 3157663 – should be installed BEFORE installing any roles, features or applications into a TP5 system.

Finding the update isn’t easy – no links from the TP5 pages and doesn’t show in search on Bing or if search microsoft.com

You can find it here:


Lets hope RTM is a bit more organised

April 27, 2016  2:13 PM

Windows Server 2016 TP5 now available

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway
Windows Server 2016

Microsoft have released Technology Preview 5 (TP5) of Server 2016 today.

Its available from MSDN and the evaluations site

Lots of new stuff to try out

April 27, 2016  10:11 AM

New variables with the variable cmdlets

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway

So you have some data in csv format:

column1 column2 column3 column4
——- ——- ——- ——-
a1      b1      c1      d1
a1      b2      c1      d1
a1      b3      c1      d1
a2      b3      c1      d1
a2      b4      c1      d1
a2      b3      c1      d1
a3      b5      c1      d1
a3      b6      c1      d1
a3      b7      c1      d1
a4      b5      c1      d1

In a variable $cd

You want colum1 and column2 in a new variable

Simplest way is probably

$new1 = $cd | select Column1, column2

The *-Variable cmdlets don’t get out much so I thought examples using them would be useful

You could also use the New-Variable cmdlet

New-Variable -Name new2 -Value ($cd | select Column1, column2)

Set-Variable also works

Set-Variable -Name new3 -Value ($cd | select Column1, column2)

April 26, 2016  3:30 AM

PowerShell team announcements

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway

A few announcements from the PowerShell Team that I’m catching up on.

The Microsoft.PowerShell.Archive module is now open source


The archive module was introduced in WMF 5.0. Its now available on the PowerShell Gallery for installation on WMF 4.0. Any future updates will be through the gallery. The version in the gallery is as opposed to that ships with WMF 5.0

You can now view the contents of files directly in the PowerShell gallery


A DSC toolkit for working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) is now available


WMF 5.1 will become available when Windows Server 2016 ships


WMF 5.1 will contain the changes and bug fixes introduced since WMF 5.0 shipped. Many of these have been available on Windows Insider preview builds

April 25, 2016  1:20 PM

PowerShell certifications revisited

Richard Siddaway Richard Siddaway Profile: Richard Siddaway

Years ago (seems like decades so much has happened) I published my view on PowerShell certification:


A recent comment on the post asked if I still felt the same way.

Its not a topic I’d thought about all that much to be honest but having reflected on the matter I still believe what I wrote back in 2008 – the world doesn’t need a PowerShell certification.

I’ve stated it many times and will keep stating it – PowerShell isn’t important. Its what you can do with it that matters.

Very few people are employed as full time creators of PowerShell code –even today. They are  employed as administrators of X (and often Y, Z, A and B etc etc). PowerShell provides a tool to administer most of things in your Windows environment (and quite a few non-Windows items as well). Having a certification in the PowerShell language won’t help you administer Windows, Active directory, Exchange, SQL Server, VMware or network switches. You need to know what you’re doing before you can automate it!!!

At recent PowerShell Summits we’ve run a VERIFIED EFFECTIVE exam. The pass rates have been abysmal – and that’s for people who attended a pre-conference workshop on the topic! See:


We won’t be offering the exam at the next Summit – the results don’t measure up to the effort put into it.

The world isn’t really ready for a PowerShell certification and I suspect that it never will be.

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