View Current PowerShell.org Q&A Forum Topics

Note: Update added at the bottom on this post on August, 9, 2016. Please read.

Sometimes you don’t always have the time to finish something you’ve started. For me, it was this function. I pounded this out in a quick few minutes, and while I don’t see myself investing in it any further, I didn’t want to forget the function, and thought I would hang on to it somewhere. Well, that’s why it’s here, especially as someone may find it useful, or helpful.

The function, which I called Get-PowerShell.orgForumTopic, runs out to PowerShell.org and grabs the current topics (page one) from the PowerShell Q&A forum (http://powershell.org/wp/forums/forum/windows-powershell-qa). It only returns the Thread name and the URL, because, well, that’s what seemed useful and relevant at the time I wrote it (which was many months ago).

Function Get-PowerShell.orgForumTopic {
    [CmdletBinding()]
    Param ()

    Begin {
    } # End Begin.

    Process {
        (Invoke-WebRequest -Uri 'http://powershell.org/wp/forums/forum/windows-powershell-qa/' |
            Select-Object -ExpandProperty Links |
            Where-Object {$_.outerHTML -like '*http://powershell.org/wp/forums/topic*'} |
            Select-Object @{N='Thread';E={$_.innerHTML}},@{N='Url';E={$_.href}} |
            Select-Object -First 30)[(0..30 |
                ForEach-Object {
                    If (-not($_ % 2)) {
                        $_
                    }
                 }
            )]
    } # End Process.

    End {
    } # End End.
} # End Function: Get-PowerShell.orgForumTopic

Here’s what the results looked like in the ConsoleHost, near in time to when this post was published.

current-powershell.org-qa-forum-topics-01

While I never added any more to this function, I had some ideas: add the thread status, add the “started by user,” add the user that made the last post, add the number of posts per topic, and allow it to run against other PowerShell.org forum topics. It might’ve also been helpful to include additional pages, if requested by the user of the function, such as adding a -Pages parameter (-Pages 4).

Anyway, here it is. Beside being helpful to see the top PowerShell.org Q&A forum posts at a specific point in time, it’s an interesting example of reading from a webpage, of which I had minimal¬†experience. So yeah, I probably learned something by doing this exercise.

If you want to do the same, then start by running the first command, Invoke-WebRequest -Uri ‘http://powershell.org/wp/forums/forum/windows-powershell-qa/’. Then add the pipe and first Select-Object command and run that. Then add the Where-Object command, and so on. This will allow you to see how I finally got to only returning the “Threads” and “Urls.” Take care.

Update: Since a site redesign at PowerShell.org, this function, no longer functions. I’m not sure that I’ll bother to update it — I don’t get the feeling that it was ever used by anyone — but I’ll keep this post up for anything else it may offer, that may be helpful in learning PowerShell.

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