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Jeroen W. Pluimers on .NET, C#, Delphi, databases, and personal interests

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Archive for the ‘PowerShell’ Category

Small batch file wrapper around PowerShell to uniquely sort file based content

Posted by jpluimers on 2021/05/19

From my batch file library; note this PowerShell wrapper does not support stdin, but that is OK for me.

For Windows 10 and up, sort /unique works too and supports stdin.

:: note: does not work on stdin, unliqke sort which does support standard input
PowerShell Get-Content %1 ^| Sort-Object ^| Get-Unique
:: note that for Windoww 10 and up, there is a sort /unique switch, but Windows versions below it do not.



Posted in Batch-Files, CommandLine, Development, PowerShell, PowerShell, Scripting, Software Development | Leave a Comment »

Chocolatey: installing Oracle SQL Developer and updating the chocolatey package

Posted by jpluimers on 2021/05/13

Sometimes an install is not just as simple as C:\>choco install --yes oracle-sql-developer.

Edit 20210514:

Note that most of the below pain will be moot in the future as per [] Jeff Smith 🍻 on Twitter: “we’re working on removing the SSO requirement, it’s already done for @oraclesqlcl – see here … “ referring to [Wayback] SQLcl now under the Oracle Free Use Terms and Conditions license | Oracle Database Insider Blog

SQLcl, the modern command-line interface for the Oracle Database, can now be downloaded directly from the web without any click-through license agreement.

It means the Oracle acount restriction will be lifted, and downloads will be a lot simpler.

I started with the below failing command, tried a lot of things, then finally almost gave up: Oracle stuff does not want to be automated, which means I should try to less of their stuff.

First of all you need an Oracle account (I dislike companies doing that for free product installs; I’m looking at Embarcadero too) by going to

[WayBack] Chocolatey Gallery | Oracle SQL Developer 18.4.0 (also:


  • This version supports both 32bit and 64bit and subsequently does not have a JDK bundled with it. It has a
    dependency on the jdk8 package to meet the application’s JDK requirement.
  • An Oracle account is required to download this package. See the “Package Parameters” section below for
    details on how to provide your Oracle credentials to the installer. If you don’t have an existing account, you can
    create one for free here:

Package Parameters

The following package parameters are required:

/Username: – Oracle username
/Password: – Oracle password

(e.g. choco install oracle-sql-developer --params "'/Username:MyUsername /Password:MyPassword'")

To have choco remember parameters on upgrade, be sure to set choco feature enable -n=useRememberedArgumentsForUpgrades.

Then the installation failed fail again: ERROR: The response content cannot be parsed because the Internet Explorer engine is not available, or Internet Explorer's first-launch configuration is not complete. Specify the UseBasicParsing parameter and try again.


The reason is that the package uses Invoke-WebRequest which requires Internet Explorer and PowerShell 3. Chocolatey packages however need to be able to run on just PowerShell 2 without Invoke-WebRequest.

Maybe using cURL can remedy that; adding a dependency to is is possible, as cURL can be installed via chocolatey: [WayBack] How to Install cURL on Windows – I Don’t Know, Read The Manual. Another alternative might be [WayBack] Replace Invoke-RestMethod in PowerShell 2.0 to use [WayBack] WebRequest Class (System.Net) | Microsoft Docs.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Chocolatey, CommandLine, Database Development, Development, DVCS - Distributed Version Control, git, OracleDB, Power User, PowerShell, Software Development, Source Code Management, Windows, XML, XML/XSD | Leave a Comment »

Preference variable $ConfirmPreference allows getting more or less PowerShell confirmation prompts

Posted by jpluimers on 2021/05/04

On my list to experiment with are [Wayback] about_Preference_Variables – PowerShell | Microsoft Docs, especially


Determines whether PowerShell automatically prompts you for confirmation before running a cmdlet or function.

The $ConfirmPreference variable’s valid values are HighMedium, or Low. Cmdlets and functions are assigned a risk of HighMedium, or Low. When the value of the $ConfirmPreference variable is less than or equal to the risk assigned to a cmdlet or function, PowerShell automatically prompts you for confirmation before running the cmdlet or function.

If the value of the $ConfirmPreference variable is None, PowerShell never automatically prompts you before running a cmdlet or function.

To change the confirming behavior for all cmdlets and functions in the session, change $ConfirmPreference variable’s value.

To override the $ConfirmPreference for a single command, use a cmdlet’s or function’s Confirm parameter. To request confirmation, use -Confirm. To suppress confirmation, use -Confirm:$false.

Valid values of $ConfirmPreference:

  • None: PowerShell doesn’t prompt automatically. To request confirmation of a particular command, use the Confirm parameter of the cmdlet or function.
  • Low: PowerShell prompts for confirmation before running cmdlets or functions with a low, medium, or high risk.
  • Medium: PowerShell prompts for confirmation before running cmdlets or functions with a medium, or high risk.
  • High: PowerShell prompts for confirmation before running cmdlets or functions with a high risk.


Posted in .NET, CommandLine, Development, PowerShell, PowerShell, Scripting, Software Development | Leave a Comment »

PowerShell: avoid Write-Output, use Return only for ending execution, use $Output variable for returning additional output

Posted by jpluimers on 2021/02/18

Recently, I bumped into [WayBack] Write-Output confusion for the upteenth time.

Luckily I had the below links archived, basically invalidating the use of Write-Output, and invalidating the answer at [WayBack] powershell – What’s the difference between “Write-Host”, “Write-Output”, or “[console]::WriteLine”? – Stack Overflow.

  • [WayBack] Write-Output vs. Return vs. $Output · Issue #46 · PoshCode/PowerShellPracticeAndStyle · GitHub
    @maekee to sum up this long thread:

    In other programming languages with a return statement, the return statement is contractual: nothing returns output from a function except the return statement. Thus, for people with experience in other languages, the presence of code like return $output in PowerShell is misleading. They think: “oh, ok, PowerShell has a return statement” and don’t realize that any un-captured result values get output also — and don’t even realize they can output multiple times.

    The reasoning for, and objection to, Write-Output is similar. People like it because:

    … always explicitly sending an object to a stream… makes it easier to understand [the code] at a glance in the future.

    The problem is that this can lead to a false sense of security. If you see Write-Output you assume that output can only come from lines with Write-Output, when in reality it can come from any command or method call. Or at least, any that doesn’t start with an assignment (or [void] cast), or end with out-null …

    So while some people like it because it highlights the spots where you intentionally output something — other people argue it’s presence distracts you from the fact that other lines could output.


    Since return cannot always be used (sometimes you need to write output more than once), you should prefer Write-Output and use return only for ending execution. But since Write-Output can lead to false expectations and in addition is slightly slower, (and worse, can be overwritten by functions or aliases) …

    We recommend:

    Use return only for ending execution.

    Avoid Write-Output (although you may want to use for it’s -NoEnumerate switch). Instead, when you want to make output clearer, just assign output to a relevantly named variable. and put that a variable on a line by itself to signal explicit output.

  • and

    Jaykulcommented 12 hours ago

    TIL Write-Output -NoEnumerate is broken on PowerShell 6 and has been for 16 months or longer — there’s no plan to fix it. In summary:

    DO NOT USE Write-Output — EVER.

  • [WayBack] Write-Output -NoEnumerate outputs PSObject[] rather than Object[] and generally doesn’t respect the input collection type · Issue #5955 · PowerShell/PowerShell · GitHub


[WayBack] Joel Bennett on Twitter: “

Write-Output considered EVEN MORE harmful! Most #PowerShell experts recommend against Write-Output

Now, I find there is a long standing bug in PowerShell 6’s -NoEnumerate switch. 

I no longer accept PRs which use Write-Output”


Posted in CommandLine, Development, PowerShell, PowerShell, Scripting, Software Development | Leave a Comment »

Windows command prompt: decrementing loop

Posted by jpluimers on 2020/12/30

I needed a decrementing loop on the Windows command prompt, but that seems very hard from batch files without programming your own kind of while loop:

PowerShell to the rescue to loop back from and including 463 down to and including 290:

PowerShell -Command "for ($i=463; $i -ge 290; $i--) { Write-Host "Value " $i}"

This outputs:

Value 463
Value 462
Value 291
Value 290

In a similar way, you can execute a cmd command, but then you need to be careful on how to pass parameters: the \" is important to you can have quotes within quoted strings..

PowerShell -Command "for ($i=463; $i -ge 290; $i--) { & echo \"Value $i\"}"

gives this:

Value 463
Value 462
Value 291
Value 290

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Batch-Files, CommandLine, Console (command prompt window), Development, PowerShell, PowerShell, Scripting, Software Development, Windows | 1 Comment »

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