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PSScriptAnalyzer is a static code checker for PowerShell modules and scripts. PSScriptAnalyzer checks the quality of PowerShell code by running a set of rules. The rules are based on PowerShell best practices identified by PowerShell Team and the community. It generates DiagnosticResults (errors and warnings) to inform users about potential code defects and suggests possible solutions for improvements.

PSScriptAnalyzer ships with a collection of built-in rules that check various aspects of PowerShell code such as:

  • The presence of uninitialized variables
  • Use of PSCredential type
  • Use of Invoke-Expression
  • And many more

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Conceptual user documentation has been moved out of the source code repository and into the documentation repository so that it can be published on

The goal of this migration is to have the user documentation on The source code repository should only contain documentation for the code base, such as how to build the code or how to contribute to the code.

User documentation that has been migrated:

There is one exception - the documentation for the rules and cmdlets will remain in the docs folder to facilitate build testing and to be archived as part of each release. Only the documentation for the latest release is published on on


To install PSScriptAnalyzer from the PowerShell Gallery, see Installing PSScriptAnalyzer.

To install PSScriptAnalyzer from source code:


  • If building for Windows PowerShell versions, then the .NET Framework 4.6.2 targeting pack (also referred to as developer/targeting pack) need to be installed. This is only possible on Windows.
  • Optionally but recommended for development: Visual Studio 2017/2019


  • Obtain the source

    • Download the latest source code from the release page OR

    • Clone the repository (needs git)

      git clone
  • Navigate to the source directory

    cd path/to/PSScriptAnalyzer
  • Building You can either build using the Visual Studio solution PSScriptAnalyzer.sln or build using PowerShell specifically for your platform as follows:

    • The default build is for the currently used version of PowerShell

    • Windows PowerShell version 5.0

      .\build.ps1 -PSVersion 5
    • Windows PowerShell version 4.0

      .\build.ps1 -PSVersion 4
    • Windows PowerShell version 3.0

      .\build.ps1 -PSVersion 3
    • PowerShell 7

      .\build.ps1 -PSVersion 7
  • Rebuild documentation since it gets built automatically only the first time

    .\build.ps1 -Documentation
  • Build all versions (PowerShell v3, v4, v5, and v6) and documentation

    .\build.ps1 -All
  • Import the module

    Import-Module .\out\PSScriptAnalyzer\[version]\PSScriptAnalyzer.psd1

To confirm installation: run Get-ScriptAnalyzerRule in the PowerShell console to obtain the built-in rules.

  • Adding/Removing resource strings

    For adding/removing resource strings in the *.resx files, it is recommended to use Visual Studio since it automatically updates the strongly typed *.Designer.cs files. The Visual Studio 2017 Community Edition is free to use but should you not have/want to use Visual Studio then you can either manually adapt the *.Designer.cs files or use the New-StronglyTypedCsFileForResx.ps1 script although the latter is discouraged since it leads to a bad diff of the *.Designer.cs files.


Pester-based ScriptAnalyzer Tests are located in path/to/PSScriptAnalyzer/Tests folder.

  • Ensure Pester of at least version 5.3 is installed
  • In the root folder of your local repository, run:
./build -Test

To retrieve the results of the run, you can use the tools which are part of the build module (build.psm1)

Import-Module ./build.psm1

To retrieve only the errors, you can use the following:

Import-Module ./build.psm1

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Using PSScriptAnalyzer

The documentation in this section can be found in Using PSScriptAnalyzer.

Contributions are welcome

There are many ways to contribute:

  1. Open a new bug report, feature request or just ask a question by opening a new issue.
  2. Participate in the discussions of issues, pull requests and test fixes or new features.
  3. Submit your own fixes or features as a pull request but please discuss it beforehand in an issue.
  4. Submit test cases.

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Creating a Release

  • Update changelog ( with the new version number and change set. When updating the changelog please follow the same pattern as that of previous change sets (otherwise this may break the next step).
  • Import the ReleaseMaker module and execute New-Release cmdlet to perform the following actions.
    • Update module manifest (engine/PSScriptAnalyzer.psd1) with the new version number and change set
    • Update the version number in Engine/Engine.csproj and Rules/Rules.csproj
    • Create a release build in out/
Import-Module .\Utils\ReleaseMaker.psm1
  • Sign the binaries and PowerShell files in the release build and publish the module to PowerShell Gallery.
  • Draft a new release on github and tag master with the new version number.

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Code of Conduct

This project has adopted the Microsoft Open Source Code of Conduct. For more information see the Code of Conduct FAQ or contact with any additional questions or comments.

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