Best Powershell IDE

I’ve done a bit of an exhaustive search trying to find a Powershell IDE/Editor that I really like, and while I haven’t found anything that is 100% perfect, here is my List, along with a quick pro/con breakdown for each.

  • Windows PowerShell ISE
    • Pros:
      • Built right into windows (Freeish)
      • Does a good job of text highlighting
      • Stable, autosaves with base
    • Cons:
      • Powershell only, you’r not gonna be able to use one editor if you program in multiple languages
      • Experience varies slightly when using different versions of windows.
    • Overall thoughts: The version for Windows 8.1 Amongst the best Editors/IDEs for Powershell out there, the only reason I really would look for more is if you are wanting to program using one IDE for multiple languages). 90/100
  • PrimalScript 2014
    • Pros:
      • This IDE works for just about any language.
      • Text Highlighting works well
      • Built in console
      • Very flexible work area
    • Cons:
      • Friggity Expensive – $389
      • Takes a little bit to learn the interface
      • Also, it’s friggity expensive
      • No text wrap
    • Overall thoughts: Probably the best out there, but its price is hard to get past when it’s operating in a marketplace with so many cheap/free editors made available. 90/100
  • PowerGUI Script Editor
    • Pros:
      • Free
      • Text highlighting works well
      • IDE type tool (console built it)
      • Flexible Workspace
    • Cons:
      • No text wrap
      • Only works for Powershell
      • Autosave feature may take some fiddling (I found out the hard way)
      • Future may be bleak due to Dell’s takeover of Quest software
    • Overall Thoughts
      • An excellent and flexible choice, however if you’re looking for a universal coding solution, this is not you IDE/editor. Almost as good as the built in ISE, but not many compelling reasons to make the jump. 85/100.
  • NotePad ++
    • Pros:
      • Free
      • multilingual
      • Easy to use
      • Text Wrap!
    • Cons:
      • Not the best text highlighting, misses a lot of add-on cmdlets (for exchange, AD, Lync, etc.
      • Not an actual IDE
    • Overall thoughts:
      • As this is an editor, and not a full on IDE, it’s best use is for quick edits, and not script creation. 68/100

There are many more IDEs/editors available, but the ones I supplied are a cut above in my opinion. Feel free to share yours in the comment section below.

Learning Powershell? It’s a bit spendy, but as in most things technology, with this book, you get what you pay for.



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