Introducing the SAPIEN Script Explorer

Every now and then we get a forum post or an email from a customer bemoaning that PowerShell Studio associates the ‘open’ verb for Windows PowerShell script (.ps1) with itself.
Since the “open” verb is by default not associated with anything, for a good reason, I usually asked why that was an issue. For us, opening a script in PowerShell Studio when you double click on it in File Explorer, is what we found to be most convenient.
So I was a little puzzled when I heard that some people don’t agree with me. Just kidding, I wasn’t really all that puzzled.

To make a long story short, it seems users associate the “open” verb with PowerShell.exe, so that they can simply double click any script and run it. As one user put it: “We not only write scripts, we write them to run them”.
I was right away heading over to the stable, saddling my moral high horse, to launch into a lecture why this is not a good idea, a security hole in fact and that the “open” verb was intentionally left un-associated in order to avoid scripts just being run by anyone from wherever.
Just in time though I skidded to a halt and realized that I had nothing better to offer. How are people supposed to run scripts, if not from File Explorer?
Sure, you can always use the ISE, dot source them from the console, or use some other editor to launch the script. That works fine on the machine where you write the script, since you are likely in some type of editor anyway. But on a production database server you don’t want to install a development environment simply to launch a script.

But worry no more, you can now use our new Script Explorer. It will run scripts, PowerShell, VBScript and JScript, with a double click and capture the output. You can fire up your favorite editor, sign a script, test a script or even run a script packaged as executable right there.
Best of all, you can leave the “open” verb associated with some editor and set  your script policy to “Restricted”. Script Explorer will still run your scripts, but outside of it, no PowerShell script will be executed just because someone accidentally double-clicked install-malware.ps1.

SAPIEN Script Explorer has no command line switch to execute a script. It is strictly launching scripts interactive.

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Of course you don’t want to shell out any additional funds from your already constrained budget to get something File Explorer can already do. Well, can do by creating a security hole, but nonetheless it can. Fret not, a site license for SAPIEN Script Explorer is included if you own a PowerShell Studio or PrimalScript license.
So, that means you can freely distribute it within the network or the physical location where you have PowerShell Studio and / or PrimalScript installed. That’s right, a site license.
You can find the installer for this (EXPSetup_X.X.X_XXXXXX_x64.exe) in the ‘Redistributable’ folder under the respective installation folder, usually “C:\Program Files\SAPIEN Technologies, Inc\PrimalScript 2020” or “C:\Program Files\SAPIEN Technologies, Inc\PowerShell Studio 2020”.

For those whose eyes are offended by the dark mode setting, the ‘Style’ menu on the top right of the frame has a “light” option.

As always, please use our feedback forum (https://www.sapien.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=23)  to let us know what you think. Suggestions? Requests? Critique? Post them there.