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March 24, 2011

PowerCLI 101: PowerShell Basics for vSphere Administrators


PowerShell is a scripting language and command line shell that enables administrators to be more efficient and productive. PowerCLI is VMware’s application of PowerShell which allows the command line tool to be used in a virtual environment.

Both PowerShell and PowerCLI are powerful tools that can be extremely useful, however they can also be intimidating especially to those who are new to the command line.

Why Do You Need to Know PowerCLI?

If you’re a vSphere administrator, sooner or later you will have to master PowerCLI. Mastering PowerCLI will not only help you become a better admin, it will help you advance your virtualization career. PowerCLI is now a requirement on the VMware VCAP-DCA exam and more and more companies are looking for VMware professionals with experience in PowerCLI.

But before you jump into PowerCLI, it’s helpful to understand the basics on PowerShell and this video from PowerShell MVP and vExpert Hal Rottenberg will help you do just that. In this hour long video Hal will show you how the interactive shell works and will help you understand many core concepts of PowerShell including:

  • Shell vs script engine
  • Varialbles
  • Operators
  • Cmdlets (pronouced command-lets)
  • Parameters
  • Pipeline
  • Flow control
  • Objects
  • How to rad a PowerShell script
  • Integrated Script Environments (ISE)
  • PowerShell and PowerCLI resources

Once you’re done with this video you’ll be ready to get started with our brand new VMware vSphere PowerCLI Training which is a fast-paced, comprehensive PowerCLI course created by Hal that will help you prepare for section 8 of the VMware VCAP-DCA exam.

About the Author

served as the editor-in-chief of the TrainSignal blog from 2007 - 2012. In addition to covering a variety of topics, including IT certification, training and technology news, Kasia was also responsible for the content strategy and website management at TrainSignal. You can connect with Kasia on Twitter @kasialorenc.