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Learn Windows PowerShell in a Month of Lunches Paperback – 17 May 2011

5.0 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 425 pages
  • Publisher: Manning Publications; 1 edition (17 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1617290211
  • ISBN-13: 978-1617290213
  • Product Dimensions: 18.7 x 1.8 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 375,895 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Don Jones is a PowerShell MVP, writes the PowerShell column for Microsoft TechNet Magazine, and blogs about PowerShell for WindowsITPro.com. A top-rated speaker and trainer, Don developed PowerShell courseware for Microsoft and other companies, and has taught PowerShell to more than 20,000 IT pros.


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Format: Paperback
Don Jones is a well-known PowerShell MVP, trainer, author and blogger. This is his latest book on PowerShell. It sets out to teach a complete new comer to PowerShell how to use the language and commands to get stuff done. That is an important point - the book is about learning PowerShell so that you can use it to automate your administrative tasks.
The book is not an abstract look at PowerShell as a language but treats it as a tool you want to learn. It assumes you will be reading the chapters in order (which I would strongly recommend) and that you will be performing the exercises and running the code examples. Please make sure you do as it's the only way you will get the maximum benefit from the book.
As I have stated in other reviews I have three main criteria for judging a book:
* Is it technically accurate?
* Does deliver the material it claims to deliver?
* Is worth the cost of purchase and the time I spend reading it?
The first one is easy to deal with. Yes it is technically accurate. Don is an expert on the subject of PowerShell and more importantly for a book of this sort he is an expert on how to teach it. The book has been reviewed by a number of PowerShell experts and I performed the final technical review. It's as accurate as it can be!
The book has the following chapters:
1. Before you begin
2. Running commands
3. Using the help system
4. The pipeline: connecting commands
5. Adding commands
6. Objects: just data by another name
7. The pipeline, deeper
8. Formatting--and why it's done on the right
9. Filtering and comparisons
10. Remote control: one to one, and one to many
11. Tackling Windows Management Instrumentation
12. Multitasking with background jobs
13.
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I wrote my first Powershell (powercli) script to interrogate vSphere last year but it was a very hit and miss affair, copying snippets of code from other people until I got something which did near enough what I needed. With my firm moving towards the latest MS technologies (Exchange 2011, SCCM, etc) I decided it was now time to learn PS properly and so bought this book.

So what can I say? Well I've read literally scores of technical books, everything from "Understanding IP6" to "The Suse Linux bible", but this text is by far and away the most enjoyable read out of the lot of them. It's not a tombstone of a book so immediately you feel that for once you might actually finish it, and that it wont be relegated to "reference manual" status.

The composition of the book is also excellent, with each chapter including practice examples designed to take about an hour each. The author is concise in his writing style but is still humorous, keeping the read enjoyable and relevant.

I've never before picked up a technical book and had trouble putting it down, but this book has changed all that. If you need or want to learn PowerShell and finally understand exactly what those scripts do in full, then this is the book for you!
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I've always been known as a bit of a scripter in work, but it's mainly been the odd for loop from the command line and learning all the command line inputs for lots of different products etc. (csvde, ldife, psexec, putty, adsi etc.) With these skills it's been a bit like the adage about sausages and laws. (You don't want to know how they're made, just enjoy the end results.) A lot of what I've done has been from the culmination of running say a few batch files one after the other but getting there in the end. I guess what I'm trying to say is I was a frustrated scripter.

I've counted up all the books I've bought whereby I've 'tried' to teach myself scripting methods, vbscript, perl, wmi, etc however I kind of glazed over, gave up the ghost or just went back to doing it the 'old faithful' way as I didn't have time to keep working through the learning curve. Like most of us, I'm busy enough in work keeping all the plates spinning that the last thing I needed to do was put up another plate!

Anyway, I've also 'played' with powershell quite a bit, starting back when it first came out and the snapins for VMWare came back in version 1.0. I got so much out of reporting on the Virtual Center etc that I'm told they still use a lot of the scripts I originally wrote. (And like most other people out there I guess, a lot of what I wrote came from stuff I'd found online that was excellent and freely available.) It got to the stage where I was just holding myself back with powershell so I looked around and actually bought a few other books but they joined the pile of other books gathering dust (I've counted them and I've spent over £150 on them since 2003!), I saw the good reviews on here, googled the author started following him on twitter and eventually bought the book.
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An easy to read, informative, and worthwhile book with the added benefit of having a soft copy download available so you can cut/paste the text into your Powershell window.
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I purchase a lot of books that cover areas of IT that I am interested in.
This one stands heads and shoulders above the others, purely down to the authors ability to explain complex topics in an easy to remember style. I love the month of lunches idea, and it works a charm.

I am so much better off for reading this book, and have now automated tasks and navigated my way through complex challenges strictly down to what I have learnt from this book.

A really great job, and I hope to see more from this author in the future.
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