Home > PowerShell > Function: New-PSUpdateHelpScheduledTask – Auto Update PowerShell Help

Function: New-PSUpdateHelpScheduledTask – Auto Update PowerShell Help

Powershell_logo-137x137Probably not of much value to people unless you build a fair amount of servers and have it scripted, but…

One thing you want to do with servers running PowerShell v3.0, such as Windows Server 2012, is to regularly run Update-Help from a PowerShell session to update the help files PowerShell uses for various modules. But this is something that can be easily forgotten, and, who wants to manually do a recurring task, anyways?

Here is a function you can toss in your server build script to create a scheduled task that will automatically update PowerShell help every day at 7pm. The task runs as ‘system’, so we don’t have to worry about storing credentials. Here’s the function

function New-PSUpdateHelpScheduledTask {
	[CmdletBinding(SupportsShouldProcess = $true)]
	param()
	BEGIN{
		[string] $TaskArguments = '-NoProfile -Command "& {Update-Help -Force; Start-Sleep -Seconds 5; Get-ChildItem $env:temp -Recurse -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue | Where-Object {$_.PSIsContainer -eq $True -and $_.GetFiles() -match ''.cab''} | Remove-Item -Recurse -Force}"'
		[string] $TaskProgram =  "$env:SystemRoot\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe"
	}
	PROCESS{	
		$TaskAction = New-ScheduledTaskAction -Execute $TaskProgram -Argument $TaskArguments
		$TaskTrigger = New-ScheduledTaskTrigger -Daily -At 19:00
		Register-ScheduledTask -TaskName "Update PowerShell Help" -Action $TaskAction -Trigger $TaskTrigger -RunLevel Highest -User "system" -Description "Automatically updates PowerShell help." | Out-Null
	}
	END {
		Remove-Variable TaskAction
		Remove-Variable TaskTrigger
	}
} # end function New-PSUpdateHelpTask

and merely call it using

New-PsUpdateHelpScheduledTask

You’ll notice a new scheduled task in Task Scheduler, and we see that it completed successfully.
Update PowerShell Help
Just a couple of lines of code and we’ve removed the need to manually run Update-Help on a server.

Hope this helps!

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  1. Anders
    June 21st, 2014 at 14:24 | #1

    Excellent.! Would you happen to know how to create hierarchical folder inside Task Scheduler with PowerShell?

  1. March 9th, 2013 at 11:38 | #1
  2. March 9th, 2013 at 11:39 | #2
  3. April 9th, 2013 at 02:27 | #3