Last week I was interviewed on the Mind of Root podcast about what administrators can do to promote PowerShell and automation in their environments. The show is now available for streaming or download. I still think your best approach is to gently let everyone know that it’s not a matter of if you will use PowerShell, only a matter of when. PowerShell is Microsoft’s management strategy. That doesn’t mean you need to script or use a console. I discussed Exchange 2007 as an example in the podcast. You may use PowerShell and not even realize it. But for complex and hard-core tasks, you will need to drop to the console.
I also encourage people to find a regular IT task that is now performed manually and create a PowerShell alternative. Try to stick to someting you can do with one or two lines of PowerShell. Remember, the goal is to reinforce the idea that PowerShell is first and foremost an interactive management shell. As an alternative, you might also find a short script you use now and achieve the same results with a few lines of PowerShell. Personally, I think VBScript files using WMI are great targets.
I hope you’ll listen to the podcast and let me know what you think.
If you are thinking about what conferences to attend next year, I hope you’ll consider joining me in Orlando for the Spring TechMentor show. The show runs March 8-12, 2010 in sunny Orlando, FL. This is a great show where you can take away a ton of information that you can put to work immediately. The presenters want to give you information you need NOW. It’s not a giant show like TechEd which makes it very easy to network with others and really get to know the speakers. Personally, I love hanging out with people and am more than happy to have my brain picked over.
I have sessions on PowerShell, file management, and Windows administration. Afterwards I’m happy to chat about whatever is on your mind.
Oh…if you have some books you want signed, bring ‘em along. Especially if you want the Windows PowerShell 2.0: TFM signed. This will be one of the rare times when Don and I will both be in the same place at the same time.
Learn more about all the other sessions and register at http://techmentorevents.com/events/techmentor-spring-2010/home.aspx. I hope to see you there and that you’ll stop by and say ‘Hi’.
In keeping with my recent trend of offering solutions based on PowerShell v2.0, here’s a function I’ve revised to test if a folder is empty. I can’t recall where I used the original function or if I ever did. But I came across it recently and decided to give it a facelift. Manually determining if a folder is empty is pretty easy. If it doesn’t have any files, I consider it empty. What I originally wanted was a way to find all empty folders, say from a given root folder. Once I’ve identified the folders I can do something with them like whack ‘em. Here’s my PowerShell v2 function.