Announcing the PowerShell Preview Extension in VSCode

Sydney Smith [MSFT]

Preview builds of the PowerShell extension are now available in VSCode

We are excited to announce the PowerShell Preview extension in the VSCode marketplace! The PowerShell Preview extension allows users on Windows PowerShell 5.1, Powershell 6.0, and all newer versions to get and test the latest updates to the PowerShell extension and comes with some exciting features. The PowerShell Preview extension is a substitute for the PowerShell extension so both the PowerShell extension and the PowerShell Preview extension should not be enabled at the same time.

Features of the PowerShell Preview extension

The PowerShell Preview extension is built on .NET Standard thereby enabling simplification of our code and dependency structure.

The PowerShell Preview extension also contains PSReadLine support in the integrated console for Windows behind a feature flag. PSReadLine provides a consistent and rich interactive experience, including syntax coloring and multi-line editing and history, in the PowerShell console, in Cloud Shell, and now in VSCode terminal. For more information on the benefits of PSReadLine, check out their documentation.

To enable PSReadLine support in the Preview version on Windows, please add the following to your user settings:

"powershell.developer.featureFlags": [ "PSReadLine" ]

HUGE thanks to @SeeminglyScience for all his amazing work getting PSReadLine working in PowerShell Editor Services!

Why we created the PowerShell Preview extension

By having a preview channel, which supports Windows Powershell 5.1 and PowerShell Core 6, in addition to our existing stable channel, we can get new features out faster. PSReadLine support for the VSCode integrated console is a great example of a feature that the preview build makes possible. Having a preview channel also allows us to get more feedback on new features and to iterate on changes before they arrive in our stable channel.

How to Get/Use the PowerShell Preview extension

If you dont already have VSCode, start here.

Once you have VSCode open, click Clt+Shift+X to open the extensions marketplace. Next, type PowerShell Preview in the search bar. Click Install on the PowerShell Preview page. Finally, click Reload in order to refresh VSCode.

If you already have the PowerShell extension please disable it to use the Powershell Preview extension. To disable the PowerShell extension find it in the Extensions sidebar view, specifically under the list of Enabled extensions, Right-click on the PowerShell extension and select Disable. Please note that it is important to only have either the PowerShell extension or the PowerShell Preview extension endabled at one time.

Breaking Changes

As stated above, this version of the PowerShell extension only works with Windows PowerShell versions 5.1 and PowerShell Core 6.

Reporting Feedback

An important benefit of a preview extension is getting feedback from users. To report issues with the extension use our GitHub repo. When reporting issues be sure to specify the version of the extension you are using.

Sydney Smith Program Manager PowerShell Team


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