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Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 PowerShell Cookbook: Second Edition

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  • Posted June 13, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The crucial part of the book explains PowerShell, which is Micro

    The crucial part of the book explains PowerShell, which is Microsoft's fancy name for its custom command shell. Indeed, the book advises that if you have a unix background, a lot of PowerShell will be familiar. Take the unix shells like csh, sh and bash, and for that matter the linux bash. There is pipelining in PowerShell, just like in those shells. This lets you string together commands in a compact manner that can be easily understood. [Well at least once you get a minimum amount of experience.] Clearly, Microsoft is learning from the now 3 decades long experience of unix, and from the cumbersome nature of VMS, I suspect. The latter had no pipelining, and its shell scripts were far more verbose to write and debug.

    In fact, if you squint at the many PowerShell examples littered throughout this book, you might persuade yourself that you have stumbled onto another unix shell. The biggest stylistic difference is that the default commands that come with PowerShell often start with upper case letters. Whereas unix is distinguished by a massive deprecation of these.

    PowerShell also has conditional statements like 'if'. and it has a switch statement. Plus looping. All this adds up to a rudimentary grammar of a computer language. But it should be enough for scripting. That has been the experience of unix. You do not need too much here. Otherwise you should be writing in a true full language.

    Of course, most of the book deals with Exchange Server, now a very mature product. We see recipes [examples] of how to use PowerShell with it. To make management scripts automated tasks. Most readers will likely not need to read the book cover to cover. The contents should be detailed enough that you can quickly search for a possible recipe close to your needs. Hopefully, if you have to modify a recipe, the scripting and accompanying text will be clear enough to make this quick.

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