PowerShell Core is a cross-platform (Windows, Linux, and macOS) automation and configuration tool/framework that works well with your existing tools and is optimized for dealing with structured data (e.g. JSON, CSV, XML, etc.), REST APIs, and object models. It includes a command-line shell, an associated scripting language and a framework for processing cmdlets.
What’s the difference between Windows PowerShell and PowerShell Core?
There are now two editions of PowerShell:
Windows PowerShell is the edition of PowerShell built on top of .NET Framework
(sometimes referred to as “FullCLR”):
- This is the PowerShell that has been in widespread use for the last ~10 years.
- Because of it’s dependency on the .NET Framework, Windows PowerShell is only available on Windows (hence the name).
- The released versions of Windows PowerShell include 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0, 5.0, and 5.1.
- Windows PowerShell is available as a built-in component in Windows client and Windows Server.
- Windows PowerShell is launched as powershell.exe.
- On Windows PowerShell 5.0/5.1, $PSVersionTable.PSEdition is set to Desktop.
- Any usage of .NET-based functionality (e.g. C# cmdlets, Add-Type, and the invocation of static .NET Methods), relies on the .NET Framework runtime. This means Windows PowerShell’s .NET usage is limited to the functionality exposed by the .NET Framework and .NET Standard.
- Continues to be supported via critical bug fixes in the newest releases of Windows and Windows Server
PowerShell Core is the edition of PowerShell built on top of .NET Core
(sometimes simplified to “CoreCLR”).
- PowerShell Core is cross-platform, available on Windows, macOS, and Linux, thanks to the cross-platform nature of .NET Core.
- PowerShell Core is launched as pwsh.exe on Windows and pwsh on macOS and Linux
- On PowerShell Core, $PSVersionTable.PSEdition is set to Core.
Note: while PowerShell Core 6.0 is cross-platform, there is also a PowerShell Core 5.0/5.1 released exclusively as part of Microsoft Nano Server.
- Any usage of .NET-based functionality (e.g. C# cmdlets, Add-Type, and the invocation of static .NET Methods), relies on the .NET Core runtime. This means PowerShell Core is limited to the functionality exposed by .NET Core and .NET Standard.
PowerShell Core is officially supported on the following platforms:
- Windows 7, 8.1, and 10
- Windows Server 2008 R2, 2012 R2, 2016
- Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel
- Ubuntu 14.04, 16.04, and 17.04
- Debian 8.7+, and 9
- CentOS 7
- Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7
- OpenSUSE 42.2
- Fedora 25, 26
- macOS 10.12+
Our community has also contributed packages for the following platforms,
but they are not officially supported:
- Arch Linux
- Kali Linux
- AppImage (works on multiple Linux platforms)
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$falsewhen native command writes to
Engine Updates and Fixes
- Initial work of the subsystem plugin model (for minimal powershell) (#13186)
GetSystemLockdownPolicyfor non-lockdown scenarios (#13438)
General Cmdlet Updates and Fixes
- Revert “Add the parameter
Get-Helpto support paging (#13374)” (#13519)
- Add support for
TLS1.3 in Web cmdlets (#13409) (Thanks @iSazonov!)
- Add null check for
CommandLineParser(#13451) (Thanks @iSazonov!)
- Process reparse points for Microsoft Store applications (#13481) (Thanks @iSazonov!)
PSNullConditionalOperatorsfeature out of experimental (#13529)
PSNativePSPathResolutionfeature out of Experimental (#13522)
- Use field if property does not exist for
ObRootwhen using PowerShell Direct to container (#13375) (Thanks @hemisphera!)
UTF-7obsolete warnings (#13484)
- Avoid multiple enumerations of an
Add-Type -OutputTypeto not support
- Create warnings when
UTF-7is specified as an encoding (#13430)