on 4 August 2007
This book is quite comprehensive on PowerShell; what it can do and how to do it. The range of coverage works for the novice to the advanced user. The chapter on script security solidly explains the raison d'etre of the PowerShell security model (most needed in these days of bad hackers) and how to work within this model for created secured scripts for yourself and/or for distribution to others.
The "author notes" (sidebars really) scattered throughout the book are gems of information that provide great commentary about topics on the page and are worth just reading all on their own. These notes provide a deeper understanding about PowerShell that serves both the beginner as well as the experienced PowerShell user.
This book will reside amongst the more referenced books on shelf beside the computer such as the bat book (sendmail) and the red book (Unix admin).
To address the other review: I've read through this book several times. The number of typos is insignificant overall (Harry Potter books usually have more). The Appendix A.2.3 is a structured example. The example counts bytes and 'du' count blocks. This isn't a case of "not knowing Unix" since 'du' is for disk usage, not directory usage. It's a case of the previous reviewer being myopic on this point.
on 10 March 2007
I've been using PowerShell solidly for the last 4 or 5 months and consider myself to be fairly knowledgeable on the subject. I bought the book, however, because there are definite holes and inaccuracies in the public documentation.
My first 10 minutes with book were disappointing as it contains many typos - Manning really should hire a competent proof reader.
The leading chapters do explain the odd expression evaluation rules quite well, covering most of the gotchas, so would be invaluable to anyone using PowerShell for the first time.
Appendix A2 compares PowerShell to UNIX shells and the author shows his lack of knowledge of UNIX shells, for example he failed to notice that the "du" command shows directory usage information, and instead goes on about how you need to be familiar with bourne shell evaluation and awk. This is particularly surprising given Bruce Payette's pedigree at MKS.
I'd recommend this book if you are new to PowerShell and don't have the time to figure it all out yourself, but if you _do_ have time, you may want use freely available resources, and wait for the second edition.