Managing a Cloud Directory with PowerShell

Written by Katelyn McWilliams on December 18, 2018

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As IT admins consider a new generation of cloud identity and access management (IAM) tools, many want to ensure that their automation platforms can make the shift to the cloud with them. Historically, IT admins have leveraged PowerShell by Microsoft® to automate a number of their IT management tasks. This has been especially true with Microsoft IT management solutions such as Active Directory® (AD). Now, IT admins are thinking about managing a cloud directory with PowerShell.

A PowerShell Lesson

How to enable PowerShell for non Windows machines

Microsoft introduced PowerShell in 2006 as a task automation framework that could be used to simplify management tasks and increase control without the need to write a great deal of code. Meaning that it enables independent software vendors (ISVs) and admins to automate tasks without having to write at the API layer. Initially, PowerShell only worked on Windows® systems and applications, but since then Microsoft has enabled PowerShell for macOS® and Linux® machines as well. Enabling PowerShell for non-Windows machines was huge because it meant that admins could manage functions on systems or applications from any platform, for any platform. Because of this, PowerShell has often become the method of choice to build automation to manage IAM tools.

Shifting to the Cloud

How to shift your IT infrastructure to the cloud

However, we’re seeing the IT landscape shift from the traditional, Windows-centric environments to more modern cloud-based, third party resources. In the specific case of directory services, PowerShell modules have been a key tool for IT admins to manage AD, the legacy on-prem identity provider. IT admins know the importance of shifting their identity and access management tools to the cloud, but they have been held back due to the challenges of moving away from the foundational Active Directory. Because of all of the resources that have been available to admins with PowerShell and Active Directory, shifting to the cloud could disrupt all of the automation that IT admins created around AD.

Managing a Cloud Directory with PowerShell

Managing a cloud directory with PowerShell

The good news is that a next generation cloud directory, called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®, now offers deep automation via a PowerShell module. Meaning, through the Directory-as-a-Service platform, IT admins can make the leap to a cloud identity provider without losing the PowerShell automation tools and skills that have become a part of their daily lives.

Available here, the JumpCloud PowerShell module can be used by IT admins to control any function where there is an API, on any given system (Windows, macOS, or Linux). Shifting to the cloud doesn’t mean having to sacrifice functionality or efficiency. JumpCloud’s PowerShell module performs tasks such as adding, deleting, modifying, or unlocking users or groups, as well as resetting passwords. In short, nearly any task that can be done via the JumpCloud API is accessible in the module for automation. Visit GitHub for more information.

More About JumpCloud

If you’re ready to manage a cloud directory with Powershell with the JumpCloud PowerShell module, sign up for a free account today. JumpCloud allows admins to increase their productivity through streamlined processes like user and system management, SSH key management, and password resets, all from the cloud—eliminating the need for an on-prem server. Your free account allows you to manage your first 10 users for free to test the full functionality of the product. You can also reach out if you have any questions regarding the platform, or feel free to check out our YouTube channel for tutorials, demos, and webinars!

Katelyn McWilliams

Kate is a Content Writer at JumpCloud. She moved to Boulder, Colorado from Seattle in 2017 with experience in marketing for IT under her belt. When she isn't writing about tech, she enjoys rock climbing and petting every dog in sight.

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