Windows PowerShell, an operating system shell, offers several benefits, including a more powerful environment for command-line entry compared to the default Command Prompt program on Windows. Other benefits of using the Windows PowerShell include access to a task-based scripting language, a simplified navigation system that uses common naming and syntax conventions, and the ability to build custom tools for software administration. A system administrator using Windows PowerShell can also benefit as it is an efficient system management tool.

The Windows PowerShell interface accepts a wide range of common commands that also work on the Command Prompt. This is possible as the PowerShell program contains code aliases that redirect Command Prompt commands to their appropriate PowerShell equivalents. Some of these commands can be used to perform various tasks in Windows, including changing a directory, renaming a file or listing all files within a particular directory.

Microsoft initially released Windows PowerShell on Nov. 14, 2006, and, as of 2015, it remains in active development. The program is usable on computers running the Windows XP operating system or any Windows operating system released afterward. PowerShell commands, also called cmdlets, are separate classes built on the .NET Framework, which the program instantiates and invokes when users run their associated commands.