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10961: Automating Administration with Windows PowerShell


About this course

This course provides students with the fundamental knowledge and skills to use Windows PowerShell for administering and automating administration of Windows servers. This course provides students the skills to identify and build the command they require to perform a specific task. In addition, students learn how to build scripts to accomplish advanced tasks such as automating repetitive tasks and generating reports. This course provides prerequisite skills supporting a broad range of Microsoft products, including Windows Server, Windows Client, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SharePoint Server, Microsoft SQL Server, System Center, and more. In keeping with that goal, this course will not focus on any one of those products, although Windows Server, which is the common platform for all of those products, will serve as the example for the techniques this course teaches.



  • Experience with Windows networking technologies and implementation.

  • Experience with Windows Server administration, maintenance, and troubleshooting.

  • Experience with Windows Client administration, maintenance, and troubleshooting

  • Students who attend this training can meet the prerequisites by obtaining equivalent knowledge and skills through practical experience as a Windows system administrator. No prerequisite courses are required.


Audience profile

This course is intended for IT Professionals who are already experienced in general Windows Server and Windows Client administration, and who want to learn more about using Windows PowerShell for administration. No prior experience with any version of Windows PowerShell, or any scripting language, is assumed. This course is also suitable for IT Professionals already experienced in server administration, including Exchange Server, SharePoint Server, SQL Server, System Center, and others.


At course completion

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe the functionality of Windows PowerShell and use it to run and find basic commands.

  • Identify and run cmdlets for server administration.

  • Work with Windows PowerShell pipeline.

  • Describe the techniques Windows PowerShell pipeline uses.

  • Use PSProviders and PSDrives to work with other forms of storage.

  • Query system information by using WMI and CIM.

  • Work with variables, arrays, and hash tables.

  • Write basic scripts in Windows PowerShell.

  • Write advanced scripts in Windows PowerShell.

  • Administer remote computers.

  • Use background jobs and scheduled jobs.

  • Use advanced Windows PowerShell techniques.


Course Outline


Module 1: Getting started with Windows PowerShell

This module will introduce you to Windows PowerShell and provide an overview of the product’s functionality. The module shows you how to open and configure the shell for use and how to run commands within the shell. The module also introduces the built-in Help system in Windows PowerShell.



Overview and background of Windows PowerShell

Understanding command syntax

Finding commands


Lab: Configuring Windows PowerShell

Configuring the Windows PowerShell console

Configuring the Windows PowerShell ISE application

Lab: Finding and running basic commands

Finding commands

Running commands

Using the About files


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Open and configure Windows PowerShell.

Find and run Windows PowerShell commands.

Run commands by using the correct command and parameter syntax.


Module 2: Cmdlets for administration

This module introduces you to the cmdlets commonly used for administration. While you can search for cmdlets each time you need to accomplish a task, it is more efficient to have at least a basic understanding of the cmdlets available for system administration.



Active Directory administration cmdlets

Network configuration cmdlets

Other server administration cmdlets


Lab: Windows Administration

Creating and managing Active Directory objects

Configuring network settings on Windows Server

Creating a web site


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Identify and use cmdlets for Active Directory administration.

Identify and use cmdlets for network configuration.

Identify and use cmdlets for other server administration tasks.


Module 3: Working with the Windows PowerShell pipeline

This module introduces the pipeline feature of Windows PowerShell. Although the pipeline feature is included in several command-line shells such as the command prompt in the Windows operating system, the pipeline feature in Windows PowerShell provides more complex, more flexible, and more capable functionalities compared to other shells. This module provides you with the skills and knowledge that will help you use the shell more effectively and efficiently.



Understanding the pipeline

Selecting, sorting, and measuring objects

Filtering objects out of the pipeline

Enumerating objects in the pipeline

Sending pipeline data as output


Lab: Using the pipeline

Selecting, sorting, and displaying data

Lab: Filtering objects

Filtering objects

Lab: Enumerating objects

Enumerating objects

Lab: Sending output to a file

Exporting user information to a file


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Describe the purpose of the Windows PowerShell pipeline.

Select, sort, and measure objects in the pipeline.

Filter objects out of the pipeline.

Enumerate objects in the pipeline.

Send output consisting of pipeline data.


Module 4: Understanding how the pipeline works

This module shows you how Windows PowerShell passes objects from one command to another in the pipeline. The shell provides two techniques that you can use. Knowing how these techniques work, and which one will be used in a given scenario, lets you construct more useful and complex command lines.



Passing the pipeline data

Advanced considerations for pipeline data


Lab: Working with pipeline parameter binding

Predicting pipeline behaviour


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Pass data by using the ByValue technique.

Describe the advanced techniques for passing pipeline data.


Module 5: Using PSProviders and PSDrives

This module introduces the PSProviders and PSDrives adapters. A PSProvider is basically a Windows PowerShell adapter that makes some form of storage resemble a disk drive. A PSDrive is an actual connection to a form of storage. You can use these two adapters to work with various forms of storage by using the same commands and techniques that you use to manage the file system.



Using PSProviders

Using PSDrives


Lab: Using PSProviders and PSDrives

Creating files and folders on a remote computer

Creating a registry key for your future scripts

Create a new Active Directory group


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Use PSProviders.

Use PSDrives.


Module 6: Querying system information by using WMI and CIM

This module introduces you to two parallel technologies: Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) and Common Information Model (CIM). Both these technologies provide local and remote access to a repository of management information including access to robust information available from the operating system, computer hardware, and installed software.



Understanding WMI and CIM

Querying data by using WMI and CIM

Making changes with WMI/CIM


Lab: Working with WMI and CIM

Querying information by using WMI

Querying information by using CIM

Invoking methods


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Explain the differences between Common Information Model (CIM) and Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI).

Query management information by using CIM and WMI.

Invoke methods by using CIM and WMI.


Module 7: Working with variables, arrays, and hash tables

This module provides you the skills and knowledge required to use variables, arrays, and hash tables in Windows PowerShell.



Using variables.

Manipulating variables.

Manipulating arrays and hash tables.


Lab: Working with variables

Working with variable types

Using arrays

Using hash tables


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Assign a value to variables.

Describe how to manipulate variables.

Describe how to manipulate arrays and hash tables.


Module 8: Basic scripting

This module shows you how to package a Windows PowerShell command in a script. Scripts allow you to perform repetitive tasks and more complex tasks than cannot be accomplished in a single command.



Introduction to scripting

Scripting constructs

Importing data from files


Lab: Basic scripting

Setting a script

Processing an array with a ForEach loop

Processing items by using If statements

Creating a random password

Creating users based on a CSV file


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Run a Windows PowerShell script.

Use Windows PowerShell scripting constructs.

Import data from a file.


Module 9: Advanced scripting

This module introduces you to more advanced techniques that you can use in scripts. These techniques includes gathering user input, reading input from files, documenting scripts with help information and error handling.



Accepting user input

Overview of script documentation

Troubleshooting and error handling

Functions and modules


Lab: Accepting data from users

Querying disk information from remote computers

Updating the script to use alternate credentials

Documenting a script

Lab: Implementing functions and modules

Creating a logging function

Adding error handling to a script

Converting a function to a module


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Accept user input for a script.

Explain script documentation.

Implement error handling for a script.

Explain functions and modules.


Module 10: Administering Remote Computers

This module introduces you to the Windows PowerShell remoting technology that enables you to connect to one or more remote computers and instruct them to run commands on your behalf. Lessons

Using basic Windows PowerShell remoting

Using advanced Windows PowerShell remoting techniques

Using PSSessions


Lab: Using basic remoting

Enabling remoting on the local computer

Performing one-to-one remoting

Performing one-to-many remoting

Lab: Using PSSessions

Using implicit remoting

Managing multiple computers


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Describe remoting architecture and security.

Use advanced remoting techniques.

Create and manage persistent remoting sessions.


Module 11: Using background jobs and scheduled jobs

This module provides information about the job features of Windows PowerShell. Jobs are an extension point in Windows PowerShell, and there are many different kinds of jobs. Each kind of job can work slightly differently, and has different capabilities. Lessons

Using background jobs

Using scheduled jobs


Lab: Using background jobs and scheduled jobs

Starting and managing jobs

Creating a scheduled job


After completing this module, students will be able to:

Create and manage background jobs.

Create and manage scheduled jobs.


Module 12: Using advanced Windows PowerShell techniques

This module covers several advanced Windows PowerShell techniques and features. Many of these techniques and features extend functionality that you have learned about in previous modules. Some of these techniques are new and provide additional capabilities.



Creating profile scripts

Using advanced techniques


Lab: Practicing advanced techniques

Creating a profile script

Verifying the validity of an IP address

Reporting disk information

Configuring NTFS permissions

Creating user accounts with passwords from a CSV file


Lab: Practicing script development (optional)





After completing this module, students will be able to:

Create and manage profile scripts.

Use advanced techniques to work with data.