Coding

PowerShell: Simple Profile

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I’ve read a lot of different posts, articles and listened to any different Power Users tell me how to set up my PS profile. What I have seen is that a lot, if not most people want to trick up their profile adding all kinds of cool things that just increase the load time of the PowerShell console. You can import modules when you need them, you can update help when you need it. You get my point.

I believe simple is better, including just enough to make it work and that’s not much at all. Lets see what I have in my PS profile:

set-location c:\Powershell
$a = (Get-Host).PrivateData
$a.ErrorForegroundColor = “green”
cls

Four lines, that’s it, but what do they do?

  1. set-location “Path” Just drops me in my PowerShell folder that all my scripts are in.
  2. $a = (Get-Host).PrivateData sets a variable so that I can change colors by accessing the ChildObject PrivateData to assign a different color to different things in the PS window.
  3. $a.ErrorForegroundColor = “green” uses the $a to add the ErrorForegroundColor so that I can assign it a value of  green. You can do more with assigning cmdlets to variables but that isn’t the lesson here.
  4. cls is because I like a a clean workspace while I work.

That’s my whole profile. Nothing spectacular, or even ingenious. I just want to get working and I hate the RED error messages. Green looks so much better.

green-error

 

A New Education and Technology

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I’ve been offline quite a bit the last year, with just a few posts here and there. A lot of my writings have been along the personal bent instead of technology, education and new technologies that are leading the field in education. With that in mind I will be separating the family and personal from the technology. I have another blog that I have started creating called “It Affects Me” I couldn’t get that URL, so I did a grammar no, no (sorry Michael) and called it http://iteffectsme.wordpress.com.

codeI plan to discuss it all, technology, education, coding, PowerShell and reviews of new technology.I have already found out that you cannot trust that what you would consider a good source to be one that will give you the time of day. What am I talking about? Here are teo examples. The first involves the @ScriptingGuys and this Tweet asking for help while whining a the same time: “What use is PS if I can’t run a program I’ve copied to 43 servers because of security in Win2012 Server R2?”  I got some every helpful advise from @twiztedsteel who got me to the part I was leaving out.

The second was to @deployjeremy reading: “like the O365 #powershell tutorials. Looking for a script to add specific users to specific Groups. Staff to staff group, etc.” That was posted a month ago with no response at all. Not even an “I’m not sure.” That is completely unacceptable from someone who has a public presence on Microsoft’s Channel 9. Luckly in this case I used my AD skills to create a global Dynamic Security group that sync’s with Office365 in which I added all the needed users gythat group making them able to be a part of the group. It still needed some tweaking but its working. I’m hoping that the rest of the Powershell community is more helpful with questions than I have started out with.

I hope that everyone will visit both sites and enjoy  them for what they are.

HTML, CSS, ASP, PHP, JavaScript, SQL Oh My

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cssIn my job as an Instructional Technology Technician I help administer the LMS that our students use in the school district I work for. I also have other hats that I wear, one of them being technical support for pilot programs. Part of all this is some programming needed experience from ASP to VBS and everything in between.

Now, that doesn’t mean I have to be a certified expert in any of these, I just need to know how to get around to make things work. I’ve been working on learning skills in writing iRules for our F5 Big-IP appliance which has been fun and fruitful. I have basic HTML and CSS skill, but not enough to write directly in the code window without seeing the design side at the same time in a split window. A recent project that is going to go live in the near future is an implementation of Office 365 that has been in the pilot stage since the beginning of the school year in August.

I am looking forward to it being released to the general student population, while I am also proud of the work that was done by myself, my boss and the Instructional Technology Specialist that spent a lot of hours on the phone with support, making video’s, training staff and following up. As we got closer to the finish line we have hit some speed bumps, which in the long run actually makes the end product look much better and inspired this post.

Why? Because as a group we worked for a week on creating a professional landing page for our Office 365. I did the preliminary work in getting a template that I rewrote and manipulated so that we could add, what elements we wanted. Our boss, who is a geek in and of himself, did a lot of manipulating of both the HTML and the CSS to get things to where he knew the rest of the management team wanted it to end up. Adam worked very hard on content and idea’s including two great instructional videos. He and I sat in front of my computer screens for hours going over ideas, changes and more changes. We would make even more when we got feedback from our boss about changes to the changes.

In the end the experience that I had in CSS and the other acronyms made this a very satisfying project. It also made me think of all the things that I need to do to increase my skills in these area’s that will make projects like this even more fun. At the same time it will make me a more valuable asset to the team.