Enabling Intellisense for PowerShell cmdlets in VSCode on Mac OS X

VSCode is the primary way to edit and debug PowerShell scripts on Mac OS and Linux. If you do not have it yet, follow these instructions on GitHub on installing VSCode on Mac OS/Linux/Windows and adding its PowerShell extension.

Once you are done with that, you can create a new or open an existing PS1 file, however, you might still get “No suggestions” error when you try to get intellisense for cmdlets:

VSCode on Mac no suggestions

This is because this functionality actually requires OpenSSL. Here’s how you add it to your system:

Install Homebrew

Homebrew is Mac’s most popular package manager. To install it:

  1. Open a Terminal window,
  2. Install Mac OS command-line developer tools (xcode) by pasting the following command and pressing Enter:
    xcode-select --install

    Install Mac OS command-line developer tools xcode
  3. Install Homebrew package manager by pasting the following command:
    ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install)"
    Installing Homebrew Mac OS package manager
  4. Double-check that the installation is successful by running

    brew doctor

    System ready to brew

Install OpenSSL

Now install OpenSSL on Mac OS by simply pasting the following command to the Terminal window:

brew install openssl

 Install openssl on Mac OS X with homebrew

Verify PowerShell cmdlet intellisense in VSCode

  1. Start VSCode,
  2. Open a ps1 file or save the file that you have as .ps1,
  3. Verify that PowerShell is selected as the language mode at the bottom right of the VSCode window:PowerShell language mode in VSCode
  4. Type Get- and you will see the intellisense window popping up with the list of available Get- cmdlets:VSCode with intellisense for PowerShell cmdlets

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The posts on this blog are provided “as is” with no warranties and confer no rights. The opinions expressed on this site are mine and mine alone, and do not necessarily represent those of my employer - WSO2 or anyone else for that matter. All trademarks acknowledged.

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