PowerShell Function + Hash Table with multiple columns+ Return 2 values to main block from function


  • Hi everyone

    I have the following code which I developed:

    function Create_List_with_IP_Address {
        param (
        [Parameter(Mandatory=$False)][string]$ScriptPath = "C:\Users\username\Desktop\Scripts\Windows", # Path where the file with list of workstations exist
        [Parameter(Mandatory=$False)][string]$workstations_fqdn_list = "workstations_list_test_script.txt" # Full Path include file name that store the list of Workstations
        Write-Host $ScriptPath
        Write-Host $workstations_fqdn_list
        $ErrorActionPreference = "silentlycontinue"
        $hash_no_working = @{}
        $hash_no_working.fqdn = @()
        $hash_no_working.ipaddress = @()
        $ = @()
        # $hash_no_working = @{"fqdn"="$null"; "ipaddress"="$null"; "ping"="$null"}
        $hash_no_working.fqdn = @()
        $hash_no_working.ipaddress = @()
        $ = @()
        Read-Host "Press Enter to Continue - Finished to Define the Hash Table: hash_no_working"
        Write-Host "hash_no_working (Keys): " -NoNewline
        Read-Host "Press Enter to Continue"
        Write-Host "hash_no_working: " -NoNewline
        Read-Host "Press Enter to Continue"
        $hash_yes_working = @{}
        $hash_yes_working.fqdn = @()
        $hash_yes_working.ipaddress = @()
        $ = @()
        # $hash_yes_working = @{"fqdn"="$null"; "ipaddress"="$null"; "ping"="$null"}
        $hash_yes_working.fqdn = @()
       $hash_yes_working.ipaddress = @()
        $ = @()
        Read-Host "Press Enter to Continue - Finished to Define the Hash Table: hash_yes_working"
        Write-Host "hash_yes_working (Keys): " -NoNewline
        Read-Host "Press Enter to Continue"
        Write-Host "hash_yes_working: " -NoNewline
        # $i = 0
        #Debug Only # for ($i = 0; $i -le 50; $i++) {
        $workstations = Get-Content -Path "$ScriptPath\$workstations_fqdn_list"
        Write-Host $workstations
        foreach ($workstation in $workstations) {
            # Debug Only # $workstation = $workstations_fqdn_list[$i]
            $fqdn_resolve = [System.Net.DNS]::Resolve($workstation).HostName
            Write-Host "fqdn_resolve: " -NoNewline
            Write-Host $fqdn_resolve
            $ipaddress_resolve = [System.Net.DNS]::Resolve($workstation).AddressList.IPAddressToString
            Write-Host "ipaddress_resolve: " -NoNewline
            Write-Host $ipaddress_resolve
            If ($(Test-Connection -ComputerName $ipaddress_resolve -Count 3 -Quiet)) {
                $hash_yes_working.fqdn += @($fqdn_resolve)
                $hash_yes_working.ipaddress += @($ipaddress_resolve)
                $ += @("yes")
            Else {
                $hash_no_working.fqdn += @($fqdn_resolve)
                $hash_no_working.ipaddress += @($ipaddress_resolve)
                $ += @("no")
        Write-Host "hash_yes_working"
        Write-Host $($hash_yes_working | Out-String)
        Write-Host "hash_no_working"
        Write-Host $($hash_no_working | Out-String)
        Read-Host "Press Enter Before Exiting the Function and Returning a Value"
        return $hash_yes_working,$hash_no_working

    in this code I would like to built a Hash table which has multiple columns/rows.

    the columns/rows are:


    inside each hash table , each columns/rows can have multiple values (for that reason I am creating array for each columns/rows.

    also , when the function end , I am trying to return 2 values.

    in reality it doesn't work. 1 variable that suppose to catch 1 return value is empty and the 2nd variable that supposed to catch the 2nd return value has all information inside it.

    what is wrong in my code ?

    Wednesday, June 13, 2018 7:49 PM

All replies

  • A hash table is only an array of name/value pairs.  It cannot have "columns" beyond "Name" and "Value".  It can have as many unique named entries as you like.

    What you are trying to do is unclear. What is the desired outcome?


    Wednesday, June 13, 2018 8:09 PM
  • I recommend using custom objects for your code.

        name1 = somevalue
        name2 = somevalue
        name3= somevalue

    Output these to an array. You can have as many columns as you need.

    Search for blog posts describing how to create and use custom objects.


    Wednesday, June 13, 2018 8:13 PM
  • Perhaps I was not explaining my self good enough. so I will provide more information.

    Generally speaking , The function is intended to get as an input a text file that contain hostnames or fqdn list of computers and to test each one of the computers and generate 2 lists , one with IP address and fqdn of computers that respond to PING test and the 2nd list will include all the computers that were not responding to PING Test.

    The list which I intended to create will include the following values:

    fqdn = the fqdn address of the computer

    ipaddress = the ip address of the computer

    ping = value can be yes or no

    I am willing to create 2 seperated lists , while the 1st list ping value will be "yes" and the 2nd list ping value will be "no"

    "yes" means that the computer that has been tested was responded successfully to PING test

    "no" means that the computer that has been tested was not responded successfully to PING test

    Initially when I opened this thread post on this forum I used the term column.
    I understand that Hash table include only 2 columns , one intended to act as "Key" and the 2nd intended to act as "value" for the key.

    because , it's a good idead to practice different ways of programming skills.

    then I would like to create the value as Array of String.

    per say , the fqdn will be the key and the value will be an Array of String.

    and the same for ipaddress and also for ping.

    after that before the powershell executor is exiting the from the function block then I am willing that the function will return 2 values.
    each of the return values will be hash table.

    thanks in advanced for the assistance.

    Thursday, June 14, 2018 4:53 PM
  • That is absolutely silly.  Who told you to do this?.

    If you return a list of all computers with those three fields you, in fact, have two lists.

    It takes only about 12 lines of code to do that.

    $results = $computers |
            $IPAddresses = Try{
                Computer = $_
                IpAddress = $IPAddresses
                PingStatus = Test-Connection $_ -Quiet
    # good computers list
    $results | where{$_.PingStatus}
    # bad computers
    $results | where{-not $_.PingStatus}


    Thursday, June 14, 2018 6:01 PM
  • Hi jrv

    I know that if I have those 3 fields those are more than enough and in actually it's like having 2 lists.

    but , I was coming into this forum not to get an idea how to write the script and in which logic.

    I came into to this forum to learn.

    I know that my script is not the ideal script. but this was jumping into my head in the 1st place.

    BUT , this is how you improve your self.

    again , my question is still open.

    1) Perhaps I implement this script with 2 hash tables. is it possible to have 1 key field and 1 value field and the value field will be actual an Array ? if yes , please take a look on my code and let me know what's wrong in the implementation in case I want to have 2 hash tables , and each one will have 3 keys and 3 values and in each value the content will be an Array of String.

    2) How to implement a return of a function that should return 2 values which both of them are Hash Tables that include inside each of them an Array of String.

    thx again JRV for the assistance.

    Friday, June 15, 2018 7:56 PM