PowerShell too hard?
In an article on the Windows IT Pro site - http://www.windowsitpro.com/article/commentary/Bridging-the-Developer-Admin-Gap.aspx – Paul Thurrott states
But the problem with PowerShell is that it's so powerful its indecipherable to admins. PowerShell is arguably a full-blown development environment. It consists of a command-line shell, a .NET-based, object-oriented scripting language, and a runtime engine that can optionally be embedded in other applications. For the typically overworked admins and IT pros, PowerShell might be a godsend if they could actually use it. But I was of the mind in 2002—as I am today—that most admins and IT pros have a completely different set of skills and are overworked as it is. To really take advantage of PowerShell, you need to be a developer or learn those skills too. And finding people who have credible administrative and developer skills is quite a trick. If you're such a person, maybe it's time to ask for a raise.
Now I disagree totally with the crux of this paragraph for a number of reasons:
- PowerShell is not a full-blown development environment. You can do practically anything .NET based with it but just because you can doesn’t mean you should
- I know of many Windows administrators who have picked up PowerShell and learnt enough, quickly enough to be very productive and re-pay the time spent learning it many times over. There is a sufficient body of knowledge available through the web – including articles in Windows IT pro that a PowerShell beginner can find the information they need to help solve their problem
- You do not have to be a developer to really take advantage of PowerShell – or any other scripting language. PowerShell is particularly good for the admin as it abstracts much of the .NET code into the cmdlets. If you use a cmdlet you don’t need to know, or even care, what .NET class is being used in the back ground.
- How much of a developer do you have to be to string cmdlets on the pipeline and come up with a powerful piece of functionality that solves your business problems now
In 2006/2007 when PowerShell was just getting started I might of agreed that starting with PowerShell could be viewed as a steep learning curve. Four years later I think it is a lot easier – again Windows IT Pro have published a number of articles on PowerShell – with much more information available.
I would turn this on its head and state that if you are a Windows administrator that isn’t using PowerShell you are making your life more difficult that it needs to be.