PowerShell language support for Dispatch
Branch: master
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Type Name Latest commit message Commit time
Failed to load latest commit information.



PowerShell language support for Dispatch

Latest image on Docker Hub


You need a recent version of Dispatch installed in your Kubernetes cluster, Dispatch CLI configured to use it.

Adding the Base Image

To add the base-image to Dispatch:

$ dispatch create base-image powershell-base dispatchframework/powershell-base:<tag>

Make sure the base-image status is READY (it normally goes from INITIALIZED to READY):

$ dispatch get base-image powershell-base

Adding Runtime Dependencies

Library dependencies listed in requirements.psd1 (PSDepend dependency manifest) need to be wrapped into a Dispatch image. For example, suppose we need a Github API library:

$ cat ./requirements.psd1
  PowerShellForGitHub = 'latest'
$ dispatch create image powershell-mylibs powershell-base --runtime-deps ./requirements.psd1

Make sure the image status is READY (it normally goes from INITIALIZED to READY):

$ dispatch get image powershell-mylibs

Creating Functions

Using the Powershell base-image, you can create Dispatch functions from Powershell source files. The file can require any libraries from the image (see above).

The only requirement is: a function must be defined that accepts 2 arguments (context and payload), for example:

$ cat ./demo.ps1
Import-Module PowerShellForGitHub

function handle($context, $payload) {
    $name=Get-GitHubRepositoryNameFromUrl $payload.url
    return @{name=$name}
$ dispatch create function github ./demo.ps1 --image=powershell-mylibs

Make sure the function status is READY (it normally goes from INITIALIZED to READY):

$ dispatch get function github

Running Functions

As usual:

$ dispatch exec --json --input '{"url": "https://github.com/vmware/dispatch"}' --wait github
    "blocking": true,
    "executedTime": 1524784255,
    "faasId": "05c7f873-fe20-44bd-b189-fec96c0fc51b",
    "finishedTime": 1524784255,
    "functionId": "e9e00b75-b0ac-4ed0-89cf-ded8ee7dda3d",
    "functionName": "github",
    "input": {
        "url": "https://github.com/vmware/dispatch"
    "logs": {
        "stderr": null,
        "stdout": null
    "name": "ecef16f2-9211-43b4-a6a6-480153593a36",
    "output": {
        "name": "dispatch"
    "reason": null,
    "secrets": [],
    "services": null,
    "status": "READY",
    "tags": []

Error Handling

There are three types of errors that can be thrown when invoking a function:

  • InputError
  • FunctionError
  • SystemError

SystemError represents an error in the Dispatch infrastructure. InputError represents an error in the input detected either early in the function itself or through input schema validation. FunctionError represents an error in the function logic or an output schema validation error.

Functions themselves can either throw InputError or FunctionError

Input Validation

For Powershell, the following exceptions thrown from the function are considered InputError:

  • System.ArgumentException

All other exceptions thrown from the function are considered FunctionError.

To validate input in the function body:

function lower($context, $payload) {
    if ($payload.GetType() -ne [String]) {
        throw [System.ArgumentException]::new("payload is not of type string")
    return $payload.ToLower()


Since System.ArgumentException is considered an InputError, functions should not throw it unless explicitly thrown due to an input validation error. Functions should catch and handle System.ArgumentException accordingly if it should not be classified as an InputError.

Running Tests

Unit tests are written using Pester for both index.ps1 and validator.ps1.

To run tests, ensure you have all the required dependencies (with PSDepend as the dependency handler):

pwsh -c 'Invoke-PSDepend -Confirm:$false'

Then run:

# index.ps1
$ ls
Dockerfile        README.md         ci                function-template index.ps1         requirements.psd1 version.txt
LICENSE           build.sh          function          image-template    index.tests.ps1   validator
$ pwsh -c 'Invoke-Pester -EnableExit -Strict'

# validator.ps1
$ cd validator
$ pwsh -c 'Invoke-Pester -EnableExit -Strict'