Testing Hyper-V Disk Health with a Custom Property

Posted on September 22, 2015 by Jeff Hicks in Hyper-V, PowerShell with 0 Comments

In a previous article, I demonstrated how you could use PowerShell to test the health of a Hyper-V virtual machine’s disk files. If you skipped that article, take a moment to read it, otherwise what I’m going to cover in this article might be confusing. The goal is to simplify typing or limit the amount of how much I have to type. I have a working script block that will give me a Boolean value on the existence of the VM’s vhd and vhdx files.

This is essentially the same code that I used in my previous article. Although if you look closely, you’ll see I am using $this instead of $_. That’s because I intend to use this script block with Add-Member to create a custom property. Specifically, I am going to create a script property that will use the script block to grab the current value. In this situation, $this refers to the current object in the pipeline.

Testing VHD files with a custom property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Testing VHD files with a custom property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

As an added benefit, the new property is now part of the virtual machine object.

Verifying the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Verifying the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Stated differently, I can use this property whenever I want, and I don’t need to use Add-Member again.

Using the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Using the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

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This property will persist for the length of my PowerShell session. For something a bit more permanent, I can update the type configuration file and define my custom property. First, I need to know the type name of the Hyper-V virtual machine object.

Getting the virtual machine typename (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Getting the virtual machine typename (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

This is the same information that you would see piping a VM to Get-Member. Because I want my new property to exist every time I start PowerShell, I’ll copy and paste my script block and this command into my profile script.

The Update-TypeData cmdlet will extend the definition of the virtual machine object with my new property, which I can immediately verify with Get-Member.

Verifying the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Verifying the new property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

This property is ready to use, but I’ll have to specify it.

Using the new custom property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Using the new custom property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

And while I’m at it, I think I’ll add a custom property to give me the full path to the virtual machine’s XML configuration file, which is something else I demonstrated in the previous article.

Using the new ConfigurationFile property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Using the new ConfigurationFile property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

But why stop now? Let’s define a property that automatically expands the paths for all the disk files.

Using the new DiskPath property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

Using the new DiskPath property (Image Credit: Jeff Hicks)

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Remember that you have to specify the property to see it, because it won’t be part of any default view. As luck would have it, you can create your own custom views with Update-FormatData. However, your head might be spinning a bit from everything I’ve showed you, so I’ll save that discussion for another article.

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