(I actually wrote this blog after PowerShell for N00bs 1: Hello, World, but the content of this entry I wrote before the blog entry.)
Many PowerShell texts are available. I have only read a few, and offer the following opinions:
Microsoft Windows PowerShell Step by Step – Very good first book. I will probably start using chapters from this book for my brown bags.
Windows PowerShell in Action – Written by the PowerShell Dev PM, it offers an introduction to PowerShell in context of the other scripting languages, so there’s a lot of ‘chaff’ to sort through if you are looking for ‘PowerShell for Dummies’, but is very useful if you are familiar with other scripting technologies and are transitioning to PowerShell.
Windows PowerShell Cookbook – Written by a Dev on the PowerShell Dev team, this is a very directed “how do I do this” collection of scripts. It's not good to learn the basics off of, but is very useful when you need to use PowerShell to do some specific clearly-delineated (and common) task, such as ‘How do I send an email?’
Windows PowerShell Scripting Guide – Written by Microsoft’s ‘Script Guru,’ EdWilson, this is a good follow-up to Step-by-Step, above. It also introduces many WMI concepts, which is required for administering fleets of Windows boxes.
Windows PowerShell Unleashed – Did not leave a strong impression.
Monad (AKA PowerShell): Introducing the MSH Command Shell and Language – Not only is the book outdated (it was written for the beta / RC version), it is also not a good tutorial. I tried to learn PSH from a standing start using this book and did not have a good experience. Avoid.
Professional Windows PowerShell Programming – Too advanced to be useful for a beginner. Avoid.
Additionally, Amazon lists the following which look promising:
Microsoft Windows PowerShell 2.0 Programming for the Absolute Beginner – Reading the page shows that it looks to be simple scripting, but also serves as a 'from a standing start' intro.
Windows PowerShell 2 for Dummies – I’m betting this is great for ‘standard start’ – the brand is very consistent and experienced in addressing this target demographic.
To review, we learned a few things:
There are a lot of PowerShell books out there.
Some won't apply to us at the beginner's level.