Administration and Automation with Windows PowerShell

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Course Introduction

• 5min

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Getting Started with Windows PowerShell

• 42min

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Getting Help and Finding Commands

• 39min

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PowerShell Command Syntax

• 33min

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PowerShell Objects and Properties

• 35min

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The PowerShell Pipeline

• 24min

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PowerShell Providers

• 30min

0 / 5 lessons complete

PowerShell Arrays and Variables

• 28min

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PowerShell Loops

• 19min

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PowerShell Conditional Statements

• 11min

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On Premises Lab Setup

• 36min

0 / 8 lessons complete

Basic Domain Administration with Windows PowerShell

• 2hr 27min

0 / 10 lessons complete

Send Emails with PowerShell

• 22min

0 / 2 lessons complete

PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) Basics

• 1hr 48min

0 / 6 lessons complete

Course Conclusion

• 1min

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PowerShell splatting is a method of passing a series of parameters to a command in a “single unit”. Splatting can make your code more human-readable and more accessible. In this lesson, we are going to look at how we can use splatting to simplify the code we use to create new Active Directory users - but keep in mind splatting can be used in any circumstance where you pass multiple parameters.

We are going to use the “Windows Server 2016 AD” lab from the IT Playground (link here). Launch the lab, log in to the Domain Controller and open the PowerShell ISE.

Once you’ve logged in, let’s take a look at what creating a new AD user account on a single line looks like:

New-ADUser -Name "Joe Friday" -GivenName “Joe” -Surname “Friday” -UserPrincipalName “joe.friday@serveracademy.com” -SamAccountName “joe.friday” -EmailAddress “joe@serveracademy.com” -Description “This is the users description” -OfficePhone “123-123-1234” -Path "OU=Domain Users,OU=ServerAcademy,DC=ServerAcademy,DC=local"  -ChangePasswordAtLogon $true -AccountPassword $(ConvertTo-SecureString "Password!@#" -AsPlainText -Force) -Enabled $true

....Not very easy to read and definitely NOT easy to work with or modify at a later date. We could employ the use of backticks (`) to add each parameter on a new line. In PowerShell when you add the backtick, it allows you to continue the same command on a new line. You need to add a backtick for each new line that you want to add. It is much easier to read than a long one single line of code:

New-ADUser -Name "Joe Friday" `

           -GivenName “Joe” `

           -Surname “Friday” `

           -UserPrincipalName “joe.friday@serveracademy.com” `

           -SamAccountName “joe.friday” `

           -EmailAddress “joe@serveracademy.com” `

           -Description “This is the users description” `

           -OfficePhone “123-123-1234” `

           -Path "OU=Domain Users,OU=ServerAcademy,DC=ServerAcademy,DC=local" `

           -ChangePasswordAtLogon $true `

           -AccountPassword $(ConvertTo-SecureString "Password!@#" -AsPlainText -Force) `

           -Enabled $true

Now let’s take a look at splatting and why that could be beneficial. First, we need to create a variable in the following format:

$parameters = @{}

Inside of the braces, we will put the name of our parameter, followed by the equals (=) character and finally the value. So something like this:

$parameters = @{

           Name = “Joe Friday”

}

We can repeat this for all the parameters like so:

$parameters = @{

           Name=  "Joe Friday"

           GivenName = “Joe”

           Surname = “Friday”

           UserPrincipalName = “joe.friday@serveracademy.com”

           SamAccountName = “joe.friday”

           EmailAddress = “joe@serveracademy.com”

           Description = “This is the users description”

           OfficePhone = “123-123-1234”

           Path = "OU=Domain Users,OU=ServerAcademy,DC=ServerAcademy,DC=local"

           ChangePasswordAtLogon = $true

           AccountPassword = $(ConvertTo-SecureString "Password!@#" -AsPlainText -Force)

           Enabled = $true

}

Now if we echo the $parameters variable, we get something like this:

What is cool is we can later access each individual parameter, such as the email address:

That could come in helpful later on depending on what type of scripting you want to do. But to use this variable to create a new AD user, we simply run the command with the splatting variable like so:

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