By May 31, 2010

Powershell is Pretty Cool

I’m pretty behind on the Powershell thing.  I have to admit, I never really was that interested in using it.  But now that it is included in Windows 7, I feel like it is much more of a worthwhile investment since those skills are likely to be usable on any machine you're on.

Dev machines woes


I've been having lots of fun trying to build and setup my new dev machine for my new job.  I ended up working over the weekend on it, but it has been a pretty good learning experience.

I have learned many things from the experience, including:

  • Power supplies can make beeping noises.
  • Just because your computer beeps doesn’t mean it’s not working, check to see if there is video.
  • You must pull the processor securing lever all the way up before panicking, calling everyone you know and screaming, “MY PROCESSOR IS STUCK IN THE MOTHERBOARD, OH GOD HELP ME NOW!”
  • Installing Windows in SATA mode, then switching to ACHI mode will probably require a reinstall.
  • Installing Windows on a hd connected to a motherboard and processor, and switching to another motherboard and processor will probably require a reinstall.
  • IIS is not installed by default.
    • When IIS is installed, ASP.NET support is not installed by default in the IIS install.  (I always install IIS to serve up static content in 2010… yeah)
  • Drives raided together need to have their partitions recreated before a Windows 7 install will recognize the drive at all.
  • 4 monitor stand clamps don’t work to well on glass desktops for supporting four 24” monitors.
  • You can never have too many monitors.  It’s just not possible.

Making lemonade

Out of all the bad things that seemed to go wrong, I did learn a large amount of stuff, so overall I think it was worth it.

One of the really cool things I started learning is Powershell.  After setting up my dev environment for about the 4th time, I decided I would try to start to build something to benefit the rest of the team and new developers.

I started writing a Powershell script that would set up all the little tricky things that need to be done in order to get our development environment ready.  I am eating my own dog food, from my previous post.

One value I hold pretty highly is that if I have to do something manually more than 3 times, I need to figure out a way to automate it.  Powershell makes many automation tasks very possible.

I’ll include some pictures of my dev cave on my next post!

About the author

John Sonmez

John Sonmez is the founder of Simple Programmer and a life coach for software developers. He is the best selling author of the book "Soft Skills: The Software Developer's Life Manual."