Monday, December 18, 2017

Getting last modified software on Windows using PowerShell

Getting the list of the last modified software on Windows is actually simple, if using PowerShell
Photo by Miti on Unsplash
Whenever I get requests like "hey, how can I get the lastly installed software on my machine?", I try to resolve them with code and as simple as possible. Turns out that on Windows, PowerShell can be an excellent tool for scripts like those. On this post, let's address that using PowerShell and review how it became a fun, simple and quick exercise.

Using Get-WmiObject

The Get-WmiObject cmdlet is what we need to get Windows diag information. By combining it with Export-Csv we can export all installed software on our machines with:
Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_Product | Export-Csv installed.csv

Using Get-ChildItem

The next part consists in using the Get-ChildItem cmdlet to filter out our exported data. That can be done with:
# getting last modified files
Get-ChildItem C:\ -rec | sort LastWriteTime | select -last 1000 | Export-Csv files.csv


Doing this simple exercise was fun, simple and quick using PowerShell. Don't know PowerShell yet? I would urge you to take a look and learn it (even if just the basics). PowerShell is a powerful tool used extensively in devops on Windows, Azure and Linux.

Oh, and yes, I really don't miss the days before PowerShell!

About the Author

Bruno Hildenbrand      
Principal Architect, HildenCo Solutions.