IBM's WebSphere MQ Supports Windows PowerShell

The move is designed to help increase IT professionals' productivity.

IBM is introducing support for Microsoft's Windows PowerShell scripting language in its WebSphere MQ technology.

PowerShell is a command-line shell and scripting language designed to improve IT professionals' productivity. It features an administration-focused scripting language, more than 130 standard command-line tools, as well as syntax and utilities to help users more easily control system administration and accelerate automation.

"This has been far too long coming, but finally you can administer WebSphere MQ systems from Windows PowerShell," said Dale Lane, a software engineer at IBM's Hursley Laboratories in England, in a Dec. 5 blog. "An extension for WebSphere MQ containing thirty-eight new PowerShell cmdlets is being released as 'MO74: WebSphere MQ - Windows PowerShell library.' "

A cmdlet is a lightweight command used in the PowerShell environment. The PowerShell run-time executes cmdlets within automation scripts.

PowerShell, released by Microsoft in 2006, is available for Windows XP Service Pack 2, Windows Server 2003 and Windows Vista and has been built into Windows Server 2008 as an optional feature.

With IBM's support, PowerShell can also now be used with WebSphere MQ, IBM's MOM (message-oriented middleware) offering. WebSphere MQ allows independent and potentially nonconcurrent applications on a distributed system to communicate with one another.

PowerShell provides a hosting mechanism with which the PowerShell run-time can be embedded in other applications. That can leverage PowerShell functionality to implement certain operations, including those exposed via the graphical interface.

Jeffrey Snover, a Windows Management Partner architect at Microsoft, lauded IBM's effort on PowerShell. "A lot of people are quick to say how much PowerShell looked to Unix for inspiration, but for some reason people don't pick up on my statements about how important the AS/400 CL [command language] and VMS DCL [Digital Command Language for Digital Equipment's VMS operating system] models were in the conceptual model for PowerShell," Snover said. "The bottom line here is that this industry has a long line of superstar engineers, and we all benefit from their excellent work."

Snover said he hopes to see more IBM products support PowerShell. "I'll bet you a ton of money that their services organization is going to love this as well," he said. "We think services organizations are going to be huge beneficiaries of PowerShell because it makes it quick and easy to create a custom, production-quality customer solution."

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