This Sunday at midnight PST marks the closing of our second annual PowerPack Challenge contest. The rules of this contest are very simple: create a new PowerPack or modify one of your existing PowerPacks and submit it to the contest folder in the PowerPack Library for a chance to win some cool prizes. Now you might be thinking: "Sunday, but that’s just three days away…I don’t have time to put together an entry between now and Sunday. Besides, I want my weekend to myself!" Well, you’re in luck my friend because you don’t need three days…you only need 10 minutes (well, 10 minutes after you watch a screencast showing what you can do with PowerShell, the PowerGUI Admin Console, and 10 minutes of your time). That’s not even going to take up your whole lunch hour on Friday, and if you plan to go out for lunch you could make your PowerPack during your afternoon break instead!
Here’s all you need to do:
1. Bookmark the PowerPack section of the wiki. I published a big update to our wiki earlier this week and it should be able to answer a lot of questions you might have. Don’t read the whole thing right now though, that might take too long and what you really want to do right now is explained in the next step.
2. Watch this screencast (also shown below on YouTube) that shows how I created a cool Windows Server Roles and Features PowerPack from scratch earlier today and published it to the PowerPack Library in only 10 minutes. The PowerPack even has dynamic nodes generated from 4 script nodes, which used to be quite a lot of work but thanks to the AdminConsole module they are much, much easier now. In fact, if you pay close attention to the screencast, you’ll see that all of the functionality in the PowerPack itself is done with only 7 lines of PowerShell script plus one basic node and two basic actions — that’s pretty amazing. The entire screencast is longer than 10 minutes because I needed to explain a few things before and after the demonstration, but the creation and publishing of the PowerPack itself is done in only 10 minutes during the screencast.
Now that I’ve armed you with the wiki documentation and the screencast demo, I’ll be looking forward to seeing your PowerPacks in the PowerPack Library after your lunch or afternoon break! 😉
Good luck with your PowerPacks!
Learning and using PowerShell v2 features just got easier! Earlier this week I uploaded a collection of PowerShell v2 code snippets to the PowerGUI website, and they are ready for you to download and use. All you need to do is follow the installation instructions in the snippet document.
Once you have the snippets installed, watch the screencast that demonstrates how you can learn more about some PowerShell v2 features by using the v2 code snippets. You can watch it in flash format with a table of contents, or you can watch the YouTube version below.
Want to see more snippets? Let me know which areas of PowerShell you would like to see covered in snippets by leaving me a note in the comments.
Another week has gone by and I have another brand new PowerPack ready for download. This time around it’s the Org Chart PowerPack. This is a PowerPack that I put together based on a Get-OrgChart function I wrote to analyze org chart data at work. It lets you do some really cool things such as:
- Dynamically create an org chart from users in Active Directory using title, department, office, address, and other properties.
- Generate a Visio Org Chart from PowerGUI for the any branch of an organization.
- Create statistical reports for the employees in your organization to see breakdowns of employees by office, department, management, etc.
- Dynamically generate Office Directory reports in HTML when using it in conjunction with the Advanced Reporting PowerPack.
Note: The Org Chart PowerPack uses the Quest AD cmdlets to retrieve information from AD so you will need to install those first before you can use the PowerPack.
If you would like to see how this PowerPack can be of benefit to you, check out this screencast:
This screencast was recorded in HD format so you can click on the HD button once you start watching it to enable high definition video. Alternatively, if you would prefer to watch a high resolution flash version with a table of contents you can watch the screencast here. I decided to try widescreen format this time since that is my format preference…let me know if this is a problem for you.
This is the first release of this PowerPack and I’m anxious to hear what you think so please give it a look and share your feedback so that I can improve it with another update in the future.
Thanks for listening!