Windows PowerShell 1.0 (continued)

This will probably be my last post about Windows PowerShell. I was really hoping that it would be the cat’s meow but I’m sorry to report that I don’t believe it is ready for prime time. It is no surprise to me that Microsoft chose to leave it out of the Vista release.

I have to say that it is pretty cool that you can access the .NET objects from the command line.

I still feel that the documentation is terrible. I am going to be more specific but it is hard to know where to start.

First of all, the primer needs an INDEX! How hard can that be?

  • Help files are a mixture of text files and xml files. This means that to search for a word in the help files, I first have to run the get-help cmdlet and pipe the output through some filter to find the word of interest. This makes scripts like apropos (http://www.leeholmes.com/blog/GetHelpMatchSearchHelpAproposInPowerShell.aspx) run quite slow.
  • I didn’t see any reference in the Primer about one of the most useful cmdlets… “select-string”.
  • Try to find out anything about “prompt”.
  • Cut and paste from the screen to the command line is primitive.
  • Neither the get-help cmdlet nor the command line editor have any facility for searching. With command lines approaching 200 characters or more this is painful if you made a typo.
  • There is not much about script writing. I finally discovered how to list the existing scripts like “help” by doing a “get-content” on the function. In analyzing the “help” script I see constructs that I have yet to find an explanation for in any of the documentation.

I could go on and on but I will spare the reader that agony.

In conclusion, there is a lot of potential here and maybe by version 5.0 it will really be the cat’s meow but for now I will stick to the older shells that have evolved over time to become quite powerful.

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