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)]
		[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"
		$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


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!


I’ve never been one to really solicit donations for my work. My offerings are created because *I* need to solve a problem, and once I do, it makes sense to offer the results of my work to the public. I mean, let’s face it: I can’t be the only one with that particular issue, right? Quite often, to my surprise, I’m asked why I don’t have a “donate” button so people can donate a few bucks. I’ve never really put much thought into it. But those inquiries are coming more often now, so I’m yielding to them. If you’d like to donate, you can send a few bucks via PayPal at https://www.paypal.me/PatRichard. Money collected from that will go to the costs of my website (hosting and domain names), as well as to my home lab.

  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?

  2. soder
    March 22nd, 2017 at 09:40 | #2

    There is a well-known issue with Update-Help if running on a server that is behind proxy, google is full with such reports. So if you have problem with that, this script wont solve it either (as in the deep it is running the same Update-help cmdlet).

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