Are you interested in learning Windows PowerShell?
There is a multitude of reasons why you should start learning PowerShell now. I am assuming you have already made your choice, and you are ready to start learning. Whether your goal is to become an expert, or only to become familiar, your foundational knowledge of PowerShell is critical.
These two resources will give you the foundation you need to be successful with PowerShell.
Number one: Learn Windows PowerShell in a Month of Lunches
This book, coauthored by PowerShell MVP's Don Jones and Jeffery Hicks, is the single best investment you can make to learn Windows PowerShell. Not only is the book written in a great format that is easy to follow, it also teaches you to learn PowerShell in a way that other books simply do not.
One day, I was fortunate enough to meet PowerShell MVP Jason Helmick for lunch. He and I were discussing PowerShell, and he asked me where I was learning from. I told him that I purchased a book online, and was reading it daily. I won't name the book, but he told me to immediately stop. He then told me to read PowerShell in a Month of Lunches first, and then finish the original book. I did go back and finish the original book, and it did contain good knowledge, but Jason was right. Learn Windows PowerShell in a Month of Lunches teaches you to use PowerShell as a tool, not a scripting language. At the time, I had only been in IT for about 2 years, and I had never wrote more than a logon script to map a network drive. Before finishing PowerShell in a Month of Lunches, I was already using PowerShell at my workplace, planning for automation, and thinking of completing tasks in a whole new way. The payoff was immediate. Learning PowerShell the way this book teaches you is invaluable. It will not only show you the capabilities of PowerShell, but explain how and why it is working the way it does.
(Note, this book has been rewritten. Make sure to get the 2nd edition.)
Number two: Getting Started with PowerShell 3.0 Jump Start
This is actually an online video course offered completely free by Microsoft Virtual Academy. It is divided into nine modules. Each module contains a 45 minute to 1 hour video, PowerPoint slides, and even a 5 question quiz. Here is the really cool part, (as if being free wasn’t already awesome) it is led by Microsoft's lead architect of Windows Server, System Center, and inventor of PowerShell, Jeffery Snover. Alongside Jeffery is one of the industry's top technical trainers, PowerShell MVP Jason Helmick. The combination of Jason and Jeffery could not work out better. Their ability to explain and show a concept with relevant examples will help you not to memorize, but understand how PowerShell works. Plus, their energy and humor is absolutely awesome, and will have you laughing while watching more than a few times. This isn’t one of those videos that will put you to sleep in 20 minutes. Microsoft Virtual Academy also allows you to set the video playback speed to 1.5x or 2x. I watched the videos on 1.5x, and I highly recommend it.
If you finish PowerShell in a Month of Lunches, PowerShell 3.0 Jump Start, or both, and are looking for more material, you are in luck.
Learn Windows PowerShell in a Month of Lunches is followed up with Learn Windows PowerShell Toolmaking in a Month of Lunches, also written by Don Jones and Jeffery Hicks.
Getting Started with PowerShell 3.0 Jump Start is followed up with another video course titled Advanced Tools & Scripting with PowerShell 3.0 Jump Start. It is also free on Microsoft Virtual Academy, and features Jeffery Snover and Jason Helmick once again.
If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear them. Just drop a comment below, or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for reading. Have a great day!