Basic PowerShell CheatSheat

Posted On 2017-12-10 by dwirch
Tags: Powershell Scripting Tip Windows
Views: 228

We all need to peek at the answers from time to time. This post is simply a quick reference guide for basic PowerShell tips, tricks, how-to's, explanations, etc.

I've found these items useful in the past, and hope you do as well.

Links to Microsoft or other documentation have made where applicable, and I'll keep adding to it.

$var = "string"Assign variable
[Type]$var="typedVar"Assign strong typed variable
[ValidateRange(1,9)][int]$x=1Assign strong typed attribute controlled variable
$a,$b,$c = 0 or $a,$b = 'a','b'Assign multiple variables
$a,$b = $b,$aFlip variables
Scopesglobal, local, private or script
$global:var = "var"Assign global scoped variable
"a", "b", "c"Array of strings
@()Empty array
1,(2,3),4Array within array
,"hi"Array of one element
$arr[5]Sixth element of array
$arr[2..20]Return elements 3 thru 21
$arr[-1]Return last array element
$arr[-3..-1]Display last threeelementsofarray
$arr[1,4+6..9]Elements at index positions 1,4, 6 to 9
@(Get-Process)Force result to an array
$arr[($arr.length-1)..0]Reverse array
$arr[1] += 200Add to existing array item value
$b = $arr[0,1 + 3..6]New array from elements of $arr array
$z = $arrA + $arrBCombine two arrays into single array
$hash = @{}Create empty hash table
@{foo=1; bar='value2'}Create, initialize hash table
[ordered]@{a=1; b=2; c=3}Create ordered dictionary
$hash.key1 = 1Assign 1 to key key1
$hash.key1Return value of key1
$hash["key1"]Return value of key1
$hash.GetEnumerator | sort KeySort hash table by Key
[pscustomobject]@{x=1;z="z"}Create custom object
"$var expand"String with expansion "
'$var no expand'String with no expansion '
@" Here-String "@Here-String -quotes, expressions, etc. Single quotes for no expressions
Comments, Escape Characters, Backtick
<# comment #>Multiline comment
"A `"test`""Escape char `
`nNew line
`Line continuation
Text and Files Basics
Get-LocationGet current directory
Set-LocationChange directory
Get-ContentGet content of file
Add-ContentAppend content
Set-ContentSet content of file
Out-FileFormatted text to file
Out-NullDiscard output
Out-StringConvert to strings
Copy-ItemCopy items
Remove-ItemRemove items
Move-ItemMove items
Rename-ItemRename item
Set-ItemSet contents of file
Clear-itemClear contents of file
New-ItemNew empty file or dir
(Get-Date).DateDate property of object from Get-Date
Get-Date | Get-MemberList properties and methods of object
[DateTime]::NowStatic properties referenced with "::"
"string".ToUpper()Use ToUpper() Method on string
[system.Net.Dns]::GetHostByAddress("")Use static method to get host name with "::"
$excel = new-object -com excel.applicationCreate a new Excel COM object to work with
Flow Control
If($x -eq 5){} Elseif($x -gt 5) {} Else{}If
$x = 1; while($x -lt 10){$x;$x++}While
For($i=0; $i -lt 10; $i++){ $i }For
Foreach($file in dir C:\){$file.Name}Foreach
1..10 | foreach{$_}Foreach
Switch -options (<values to switch on >)
PatternX {statement}
Default {Default Statement}
Assignment, Logical, Comparison Operators
=,+=,-=,*=,/=,%=,++,--Assign one or more values to variable
-and, -or, -xor, -not, !Connect expressions / statements
-eq, -neEqual, not equal
-gt, -geGreater than, greater than or equal
-lt, -leLess than, less than or equal to
-replaceReplacement -"Hi" -replace "H", "P"
-match,-notmatchRegular expression match
-like,-notlikeWildcard matching
-contains,-notcontainsTRUE if value on right in array on left
-in, -notinReverse of contains,notcontains
Other Operators
-SplitSplit a string "abcdefghi" -split "de"
-joinJoins multiple strings "abc","def" -join ";"
..Range operator 1..10 | foreach {$_ * 5}
-is,-isnotBoolean -is object instance of specified .NET type
-asConvert input object to specified .NET type
-fFormat strings 1..10 | foreach { "{0:N2}" -f $_ }
[ ]Cast operator. [datetime]$birthday = "1/10/66"
$( )Subexpression operator
@( )Array subexpression operator
&The call/invocation operator.
Filter, Sort, Group, and Format
dir C:\pub | where-object LastWriteTime -gt (Get-Date).addDays(-1)Files in C:\pub with lastwritetime greater than yesterday
ps | where-object {$_.path -like "C:\windows\system32*" -and $ -notlike "Microsoft*"}Processes where path includes system32 and company doesn't start with Microsoft
ps Explorer | select-object -Property ProcessName -ExpandProperty Modules | format-listGet explorer processes, select processname, expand modules property array
ps | Sort-Object -Property WorkingSet | Select-Object -Last 5Sort Processes by workingset, select last 5
"a","b","a" | Select-Object -UniqueReturn only unique -returns @(a b)
Get-Service | Group-Object StatusGroup services by their Status
dir | Group-Object {$_.Length -gt 100KB}Group objects bigger/smaller than 100 KB
Get-Content C:\pcs.txt | Select-String "q-" | sls "win7"Select strings with "q-", "win7" from pcs.txt
ps | Format-Table -Property Name, StartTime -AutoSizeFormat ps output showing Name, StartTime properties, autosize the table
ps | Format-table ProcessName, @{ Label = "Total Run Time"; Expression={(Get-Date) -$_.StartTime}}Table showing processname, custom label/expression showing run time.
Get-EventLog -Log System | Select -first 5 | Format-table -wrapGet first 5 events in system log, wrap display
gi C:\Users | format-list -property *Get all properties from C:\users in list format
"{0}`t{1]`n" -f $a, 5-f operator to construct strings. {0} replaced with $a, {1} with 5 etc.
Drive letter accessible locations
Alias:Aliases in current session
Cert:Certificate store for user
Env:Environment variables
Function:All functions in current session
HKLM:Hkey Local Machine Hive
HKCU:Hkey Current User Hive
Variable:Variables in the current session
WSMan:WinRM configuration / credentials
AD:Active Directory
Set-location HKLM:HKLM Registry hive
gci variable:Variables in current session
Importing, Exporting, Converting
Common Commands
Default Variables
$_, $PSItemCurrent pipeline object
$ArgsScript or function arguments
$ErrorErrors from commands
$True,$FalseBoolean value for true,false
$profileArray of profile locations
Help and Information
Update-HelpDownloads and installs newest help files
Get-HelpDisplays information about commands and concepts
Get-CommandGets all commands
Get-MemberGets the properties and methods of objects
Get-ModuleGets the modules that have been imported or that can be imported into the current session
Preference Variables
$ConfirmPreferenceDetermines whether Windows PowerShell automatically prompts you for confirmation before running a cmdlet or function
$DebugPreferenceDetermines how Windows PowerShell responds to debugging
$ErrorActionPreferenceDetermines how Windows PowerShell responds to a nonterminating error
$ErrorViewDetermines the display format of error messages in Windows PowerShell
$FormatEnumerationLimitDetermines how many enumerated items are included in a display
$MaximumHistoryCountDetermines how many commands are saved in the command history for the current session
$OFS Output Field Separator.Specifies the character that separates the elements of an array when the array is converted to a string. The default value is: Space.
$OutputEncodingDetermines the character encoding method that Windows PowerShell uses when it sends text to other applications
$PSDefaultParameterValuesSpecifies default values for the parameters of cmdlets and advanced functions
$PSEmailServerSpecifies the default e-mail server that is used to send e-mail messages
$PSModuleAutoLoadingPreferenceEnables and disables automatic importing of modules in the session. "All" is the default.
$PSSessionApplicationNameSpecifies the default application name for a remote command that uses WS-Management technology
$PSSessionConfigurationNameSpecifies the default session configuration that is used for PSSessions created in the current session
$PSSessionOptionEstablishes the default values for advanced user options in a remote session
$VerbosePreferenceDetermines how Windows PowerShell responds to verbose messages generated by a script, cmdlet or provider
$WarningPreferenceDetermines how Windows PowerShell responds to warning messages generated by a script, cmdlet or provider
$WhatIfPreferenceDetermines whether WhatIf is automatically enabled for every command that supports it
Helpful Microsoft Resources
Microsoft Windows PowerShell
Windows PowerShell Team Blog
MS TechNet Script Center
PowerShell Forum
Hey, Scripting Guy! Blog
Windows PowerShell Survival Guide
Active Directory - User Objects
Get-ADUser -Identity 'John Smith'View user account details
Get-ADUser -Filter 'Name -like "John Smith"'Search for a user
Get-ADUser -Filter * -SearchBase "OU=marketing,OU=Users,DC=domain,DC=local"Search for users in a particular OU
Get-ADUser -Identity 'JohnSmith' Properties Description,OfficeView additional properties, not just the default set
Get-ADUser -Identity 'JohnSmith' -Properties *View all the user properties, not just default set
New-ADUser -Name "John Smith" SamAccountName "JohnSmith" GivenName "John" -Surname "Smith" -DisplayName "John Smith" -Path 'OU=Users,OU=marketing,DC=domain,DC=local' -OtherAttributes @{'Title'="Marketing Manager"} AccountPassword (Read-Host AsSecureString "AccountPassword") -Enabled $trueCreate a new user
Set-ADUser John Smith -City London -Remove @{otherMailbox="John.Smith"} -Add @{url="domain.local"} -Replace @{title="manager"} -Clear descriptionChange the properties of a user
Active Directory - Computer Objects
Get-ADComputer -Filter 'Name like "Server01"'View computer account details
New-ADComputer -Name "Server01" SamAccountName "Server01" -Path "OU=Computers,OU=Resources,DC=tes t,DC=local" -Enabled $true Location "London"Create a new computer account
Remove-ADComputer -Identity "Server01" -Confirm:$falseRemove a computer account

About the Author

dwirch has posted a total of 189 articles.

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