PowerShell “CPAN”

What is the key to getting a scripting language really taking off? The number of sample scripts in that and their availability. As wikipedia claims: “half of Perl’s power is in the CPAN”.

Should we replicate the CPAN for PowerShell? No way. We should make PowerShell script repository way better. ;) And today we have made a huge step in that direction. Starting with version 1.5.1 of PowerGUI, the script editor got a really nifty feature – ability to search for a script online right within the IDE:

PowerGUI Script Editor can now find the scripts you need in the online repository.

PowerGUI Script Editor can now find the scripts you need in the online repository.

All you need to do is:

  1. On the File menu, click Search Online.
  2. In the Search Online dialog box, type in the keywords and hit Enter.
  3. Hover over each entry for which you want to read the description.
  4. Click Download to open the ones you selected (yes, you can multiselect to open a few scripts with one click!)

This means that the great work which Joel and Hal are doing on the script repository at PowerShellCommunity.org (if that’s too much typing, poshcomm.org will take you to that site as well, or you can use poshcode.org to just go to the repository) is now at your fingertips right within the scripting IDE!

Check out the repository, and obviously do contribute to it whenever you come with something others could reuse.

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7 Responses to “PowerShell “CPAN””


  1. 1 halr9000 July 29, 2008 at 2:29 am

    Dmitry, it’s PoshComm.org with two M’s.

    But that’s not the reason I’m commenting. :) I just wanted to say thanks for this great first step. I know we can build something bigger and better for everyone given the time and resources.

    Stay tuned to the PowerScripting Podcast. I think on Episode 37 we’re going to have Joel Bennett and Mark Schill on the show. We’ll be talking about this subject of where poshcode needs to go in great detail.

  2. 2 dmitrysotnikov July 29, 2008 at 6:01 am

    Oops, good catch, Hal. I have fixed the typo. Thanks for reporting this!

  3. 3 Ross September 20, 2012 at 3:41 pm

    It is a great initiative.

    The reasons that I like CPAN are:
    – I can browse the repository by category;
    – standardized documentation with simple examples at the top;
    – only 1 or 2 modules for a task;

    Without a way to neatly browse the repository, you will get a lot of duplicate submissions with varying quality.

    The trick is — how do you get _only_one_ full-featured module for a task (ie. _the_ powershell Exchange2003 module or _the_ mysql module). Otherwise you have to skim through 10 scripts with overlapping functionality to get the bits that you want.

    Just some food for thought.

    • 4 Dmitry Sotnikov September 21, 2012 at 2:24 am

      Very good points and feedback and indeed still plenty of improvements needed to offer similar experience for PowerShell. Hopefully Microsoft will step up and lead this more actively – hard to expect the community to do that all for their technology entirely, imho.


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