Released in our new Git repo:Â The Community Book of PowerShell Practices,Â an ongoing book started from this past Summer’s “Great Debates” blog post series. Grab it fromÂ https://github.com/PowerShellOrg/ebooks/blob/master/Practices/2013Sep_Practices/2013Sep_Practices.doc and enjoy!
[UPDATE: I think I've finally gotten all the books under curation - but if you've an idea for a PowerShell-related ebook, and would like to co-author or even be a principal author (I'll help out with logistics), still hit me up.]
As you may know, PowerShell.org hosts a number of free ebooks that have, to date, been written mainly by me. But I’ve recently been delighted to welcome some co-contributors – Forums regular Dave Wyatt has contributed new content to “Secrets of PowerShell Remoting,” for example, and Matt Penny has volunteered to organize the forthcoming “Community Book of PowerShell Practices.”
I’d like to try and sign up “curators” for some of our other free ebooks, including the forthcoming “Big Book of PowerShell Error Handling” and the “Creating Trend and Analysis Reports in PowerShell” titles, as well as – and this is one I’m really interested in getting someone for – the “Big Book of PowerShell Gotchas.”
What’s a curator do?
Mainly, incorporate community feedback (typos, etc) into future editions, as well as integrating new content. That content might be written by the curator, or contributed by someone else. We use a very simple Word template, and you’d use Calibre to produce PDF and EPUB from that. I provide cover art images and whatnot – this is mainly an “assemble, organize, and deal with the errata” process at a minimum. If you are passionate about the topic, you can of course become a co-author with me and add your own content (and I’m happy to help you do so). That’s especially true for the “Gotchas” title, which is mainly a series of short articles that cover some of the shell’s biggest speed bumps.
A copy of Word, Calibre (free) and a GitHub client (free) are needed, plus a few free hours every few months and the willingness to take on the job. You’ll truly be helping: I often can produce extra content now and again, but actually spell-checking it, putting it into the book, making the EPUB version, and so on – believe it or not, that stuff takes me more time and is one reason the ebooks don’t get updated more often. Sigh.
Hit me up if you’re interested in helping out!
All this Summer, we’ve been encouraging your feedback in a series of Great Debate posts. Most of the topics came from the 2013 Scripting Games, where we definitely saw people coming down on both sides of these topics. My goal was to pull everyone’s thoughts together into a kind of community consensus, and to offer a living book of community-accepted practices for PowerShell. This’ll be a neverending story, likely adapting and growing to include more topics as the years wind on.
But here’s the start:Â DRAFT-2013Sep_PracticesÂ is the first draft, officially a Request For Comments, based on the comments you’ve all contributed to the Great Debate posts over these past few weeks. I tried to capture consensus where I saw it, and to outline both sides of the great back-and-forth we’ve seen.
NOTE: The cover image in this draft is just a placeholder; this book is NOT dedicated to error handling. Its working title is correctly shown on the page following the cover image.
I’m going to leaveÂ this post in place until October 1st. Please drop any comments you’d like to offer to the final first edition of this ebook, and let me know if there are any topics you’d like to see debated in the future. After October 1st, I’ll publish the final edition of this Practices guide as one of PowerShell.org’s free ebooks. The final first edition will also become part of the next iteration of The Scripting Games, as its official “best practices” guide. In fact, you’ll notice in this draft that there are a couple of Games-specific comments, since the Games sometimes have different drivers than a production environment.
Thanks again to everyone who participated!
PowerShell in DepthÂ andÂ Learn Windows PowerShell 3 in a Month of LunchesÂ are on half-price August 25th, 2013.
Use code dotd0825au atÂ www.manning.com/jones2/
Use code dotd0825au atÂ www.manning.com/jones3/
Tell a friend who needs to start learning PowerShell – two great books at 50% off. All print books come with a voucher for free ebook versions (MOBI, EPUB, PDF), and the ebook-only version is also 50% off.
Here is something to do while sitting by the beach this summer – try out a new PowerShell book. Go ahead and take it for a spin. I haven’t read mine yet, so reviews are welcome and encouraged! Â Here are the details:
Packt Publishing are offering free copies ofÂ Â Windows Server 2012 Automation with PowerShell CookbookÂ :Â http://www.packtpub.com/windows-server-2012-automation-with-powershell/bookÂ in exchange for a review either on your blog or on the titleâ€™sÂ Amazon page.
- Streamline routine administration processes
- Automate the implementation of entire AD infrastructures
- Generate automatic reports that highlight unexpected changes in your environment
- Monitor performance and report on system utilization in detailed graphs and analysis
- Create and manage a reliable and redundant Hyper-V environment
- Utilize the Best Practices Analyzer from Microsoft to ensure your environment is configured optimally
- Manage the patch level of your enterprise
- Utilize multiple protocols to share information in a heterogeneous environment
If youâ€™re a Powershell user or interested in getting to grips with it, this is a good way to bag yourself a free guide (current retail price Â£28).
If youâ€™re interested, email Harleen Kaur Bagga at:Â [email protected]
This is a free e-book that covers PowerShell Remoting. There’s a brief overview and tutorial of actually using Remoting, but that part isn’t in-depth (check out my other PowerShell books for better tutorials and references). What this e-book provides, that you won’t find elsewhere, is step-by-step, screenshot-based instructions for configuring Remoting for any imaginable scenario. You’ll also find troubleshooting tutorials and examples, and even information on how to explain Remoting to your corporate IT security team. It’s all the stuff that isn’t documented in PowerShell’s own help – and it’s completely free. You don’t even need to register to download the file!
I’m often asked, “which PowerShell book should I buy?” I’m obviously a little biased in some areas, because I’ve authored and co-authored books for specific purposes. But, setting that aside as much as possible, let me give it a try. These are all applicable to PowerShell v3.
If You’re Looking for a Freebook
PowerShell.org hosts a free pack of ebooks, which you can download from our newsletter sign-up page (there’s no actual sign-up required to download the books). There’s also a longer list of books, including free ones available elsewhere (which may require registration – we’ve tried to note when that’s true).
If You’re Just Getting Started
Learn Windows PowerShell 3 in a Month of LunchesÂ was specifically designed for beginners. It assumes no prior experience, and requires only about an hour a day of your time – lunchtime would be perfect. Hands-on labs reinforce what you’re learning. This book doesn’t attempt to be comprehensive; instead, it’s intended to show you how to use PowerShell properly, and to give you an idea of the shell’s capabilities. You won’t learn Exchange or SQL or anything else – this is pure PowerShell, through and through. You’ll gain a foundation of the right way to use the shell, and that will ensure your subsequent learning can proceed faster and more effectively.
If You’ve Conquered the Basics
If you’ve mastered the shell’s basics, then you’re probably ready to start scripting.Â Learn PowerShell Toolmaking in a Month of LunchesÂ is designed to help you with that, although I hesitate to call it a “scripting” book. Yeah, there’s scripting – but it’s just a means to an end: Toolmaking. Creating reusable tools that the rest of your team can consume. You’re actually taken through an entire progression, starting with a simple command and gradually evolving it, one step at a time, into a complex and powerful tool. Then you’re given a tour of other toolmaking features in the shell, along with plenty of hands-on practice and examples to ensure it all sinks in.
Need an In-Depth Reference?
I’ve got two suggestions: PowerShell in Depth is intended as a comprehensive, administrator-focused reference with tons of examples. By “administrator,” I mean that this book doesn’t dive into the more developer-ish topics that go with PowerShell. Want to do .NET programming in PowerShell? You can, but this book doesn’t cover it. There’s also PowerShell in Action, and although it’s presently v2-focused, it’s a notable book because it was written by the lead developer for PowerShell’s language. There’s a lot of fun facts and tricks in here that simply couldn’t come from anywhere else. It won’t help you learn PowerShell, but it’ll help you get more from PowerShell.
But What About…
That takes us into what I call the “domain-specific” realm – meaning, you’ve gotten the shell’s core functionality in your head, and you’re ready to start doing stuff with it, but you need a little help. Exchange Server. Windows Server. SQL Server. SharePoint. Whatever. We’ve got a pretty complete list of available titles, and you’ll notice that many of them have “Cookbook” in the title. That’s a good description of what they do: give you recipes for accomplishing specific tasks, along with (in many cases) explanations about why those recipes work the way they do.