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Podcast: Top 3 Reasons to Learn PowerShell

Greg Mooney| November 16 2017

| Podcasts, IT insights

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When talking about scripting languages, the conversation can often devolve into an “either/or” debate. Adam Bertram joins The PICNIC Podcast to discuss.

Either you use PowerShell or you use Python. In this example, both PowerShell and Python can be switched out for whatever other scripting languages are part of the conversation.

But it doesn’t have to be an either/or debate.

Some languages will be better for one thing over another, but ultimately, having multiple language skills is a huge benefit to working in the technology sphere.

Looking at it from that angle of inclusion, here are three of the main reasons to learn PowerShell in addition to your other favorite language(s).

Learn how to automate IT tasks with PowerShell. Download this eBook. 

1) Automation

Users are always looking for a better, easier way to do things.

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The more things you can automate, the better. If something is routine, happens frequently, and can be generally classified as “boring,” it’s a good candidate for automation.

Of course, PowerShell isn’t the only option for automating processes, but it does that very well.

One reason is because PowerShell is specifically intended to make automating tasks and applications easy for Windows and Microsoft products. However, it’s no longer limited to just Microsoft products.

2) Manage at Scale

Not so long ago, IT professionals worked on tasks one server at a time. Those days have passed, though. Today, the role often involves working on a thousand servers at once. Or more.

That means IT professionals have to be able to manage at scale. One of the perks of PowerShell is that it is very much a management engine with the added bonus of scripting.

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PowerShell isn’t quite to the point where you can manage everything from one place, but that seems to be the current goal.

To that end, Microsoft shifted PowerShell to open source software. Approximately 50% of the current contributions of new code and problem-solving methods for the language are coming from outside of Microsoft.

Related Podcast: PowerShell Vs. The World

3) Grow Skill Set

Learning how to use PowerShell doesn’t mean setting aside the skills that you’ve spent years cultivating. It just means that you have a new tool on your belt.

That’s always valuable from an employer standpoint. A wider range of skills generally means that you can handle a wider range of tasks and responsibilities. This is particularly true in developing countries, but it also works for locations that already have a high level of technical skill available.

The more varied your capabilities, the more likely you are to stand out from the rest of the job-seekers or the other employees around you when promotion season comes around.

One of the obstacles to more people understanding and using PowerShell is that a lot of IT professionals and system administrators simply don’t want to learn code because they’d rather use a mouse and a pre-built application.

But, coding has become a more and more important skill in recent years.

PowerShell is also a good place to start growing your skill set because it can help prepare you for learning other technology skills.

Conclusion

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There are many points in our lives where we have to choose just one option. Fortunately, scripting languages don’t fall into that category.

An either/or debate is basically useless because all languages have strengths and weaknesses. For PowerShell, those strengths are automation, managing at scale, and helping to grow your skill set.

This article is based on a roundtable discussion with Adam Bertram, chief automator at Adam the Automator, LLC, has a round table discussion with Jeffery Hicks, IT infrastructure consultant, and Michael Greene, principal program manager at Microsoft.

Topics: Podcasts, IT insights

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THIS POST WAS WRITTEN BY Greg Mooney

Greg is a technologist and data geek with over 10 years in tech. He has worked in a variety of industries as an IT manager and software tester. Greg is an avid writer on everything IT related, from cyber security to troubleshooting.

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