PowerShell Basics: A Cheat Sheet for Essential Commands


In the world of information technology, mastering the right tools is pivotal for efficiency and effectiveness. One such powerful tool is PowerShell, a task-based command-line shell and scripting language built on .NET. This guide aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of PowerShell, its uses, and its key features.

What is PowerShell?

PowerShell is a Microsoft-created command-line shell and scripting language. It is designed for system administration, automating tasks, and managing configurations. Unlike traditional command-line interfaces, PowerShell leverages the power of .NET framework, offering a more sophisticated control and automation capability.

Why PowerShell?

The significance of PowerShell lies in its versatility and efficiency. It offers:

  • Advanced Scripting Capabilities: Automates complex tasks and processes.
  • Cross-Platform Functionality: Available on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Access to .NET Framework: Allows for more robust and complex operations.
  • Rich Object Manipulation: Handles data as objects, not just text.
  • Community Support: A strong community and wealth of resources.

Getting Started

  • Open PowerShell: You can access PowerShell through the Start menu or by typing powershell in the run dialog (Win + R).
  • Execution Policy: Check the current execution policy using Get-ExecutionPolicy. Set a new policy using Set-ExecutionPolicy, if necessary, to run scripts.

Basic Commands

  1. Get-Help:
    • Usage: Get-Help <command>
    • Description: Displays help about PowerShell commands and concepts.
  2. Get-Command:
    • Usage: Get-Command
    • Description: Lists all commands available in your session.
  3. Get-Service:
    • Usage: Get-Service
    • Description: Retrieves the status of services on a local or remote machine.
  4. Set-Location (cd):
    • Usage: Set-Location C:
    • Description: Changes the current working directory.
  5. Get-ChildItem (dir/ls):
    • Usage: Get-ChildItem
    • Description: Lists items in the current directory.
  6. Copy-Item (copy):
    • Usage: Copy-Item "path\source" -Destination "path\destination"
    • Description: Copies an item from one location to another.
  7. Remove-Item (del/rm):
    • Usage: Remove-Item "path"
    • Description: Deletes an item.
  8. New-Item:
    • Usage: New-Item -Path "path" -ItemType File
    • Description: Creates a new item.
  9. Invoke-WebRequest:
    • Usage: Invoke-WebRequest -Uri "website"
    • Description: Sends HTTP and HTTPS requests to a web page.

Scripting Basics

  • Variables: Start with $, e.g., $myVar = "Hello World"
  • Loops: For, Foreach, While, Do-While, e.g., foreach ($item in $collection) {<#actions#>}
  • Conditional Statements: If, Elseif, Else, e.g., if ($condition) {<#action#>} else {<#alternative action#>}
  • Functions: Define reusable code blocks, e.g., function Get-MyFunction {<#commands#>}

Advanced Commands

  1. Get-Process:
    • Usage: Get-Process
    • Description: Retrieves information about the processes running on a computer.
  2. Select-Object:
    • Usage: Get-Service | Select-Object Name,Status
    • Description: Selects specific properties of an object.
  3. Export-Csv:
    • Usage: Get-Process | Export-Csv -Path "path\processes.csv"
    • Description: Exports data to a CSV file.
  4. Import-Module:
    • Usage: Import-Module <ModuleName>
    • Description: Adds modules to your session.

Useful Codes

  1. Checking Disk Space:
    • Script: Get-PSDrive -PSProvider FileSystem | Select-Object Name, @{Name="UsedGB";Expression={[math]::Round(($_.Used / 1GB), 2)}}, @{Name="FreeGB";Expression={[math]::Round(($_.Free / 1GB), 2)}}
    • Description: Displays the used and free space on all drives in gigabytes.
  2. Listing Installed Software:
    • Script: Get-ItemProperty HKLM:\Software\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\* | Select-Object DisplayName, DisplayVersion, Publisher, InstallDate | Format-Table -AutoSize
    • Description: Lists all installed software on a Windows machine.9

🚀 PowerShell Basics: A Cheat Sheet for Essential Commands

  • 🔍 Looking for a thorough guide to master PowerShell? Dive into the extensive PowerShell Cheat Sheet I’ve compiled on GitHub! It’s a treasure trove of information for both novices and seasoned developers. This cheat sheet covers everything from basic commands to advanced PowerShell features, ensuring you have a quick yet detailed reference at your fingertips.
  • 🔗 Access the full cheat sheet here: PowerShell Basics: A Cheat Sheet for Essential Commands
  • 💡 Whether you’re starting out or looking to refine your PowerShell skills, this resource is tailored to boost your productivity and understanding of containerization. Don’t miss out on this valuable tool for modern software development!


PowerShell is more than just a command-line tool; it is a powerful scripting environment that can greatly simplify and automate the management of systems and processes. Whether you are a system administrator, developer, or IT professional, understanding and utilizing PowerShell can significantly enhance your productivity and operational efficiency.

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