Inline F# in PowerShell

We can use C#  quite easily with the Add-Type Cmdlet. With the -language parameter, you can also use VB .NET. However,if you are into functional programming and like F#, you can use that as well, although not quite as easily.

First, go and download the September 2008 CTP of F#. Once you have this installed, launch the 32 bit version of PowerShell. I'm using a 64 bit Vista machine and I had problems with the 64 bit version of Powershell with one line which I will get to in a bit. I think it has to do with the F# CodeDom Provider, not with PowerShell itself.

The F# CodeDom.dll was installed in C:\Program Files (x86)\FSharp-1.9.2.9\bin for me. Your mileage may vary. Anyway, cd into the bin directory of F# and you will find a file called FSharp.Compiler.CodeDom.dll. Once you are there, you can run the following lines to load up the F# Code Provider.

Add-Type -Path FSharp.Compiler.CodeDom.dll
$provider = New-Object Microsoft.FSharp.Compiler.CodeDom.FSharpCodeProvider
$fsharpCode = @"
let sample = [1;2;3;4;5;6;7]
"@
$fsharpType = Add-Type -TypeDefinition $fSharpCode -CodeDomProvider $provider -PassThru | 
where { $_.IsPublic }
$fsharpType::sample

When you call Sample on $fsharpType, it will return the array with numbers 1 through 7.

For some reason when I ran this on a 64 bit I get the following error when I try to add the type with typeDefinition $fsharpCode on line 6

Add-Type : The system cannot find the file specified
At line:6 char:23
+ $fsharpType = Add-Type <<<<  -TypeDefinition $fSharpCode -CodeDomProvider $provider -PassThru | where { $_.IsPublic }
    + CategoryInfo          : NotSpecified: (:) [Add-Type], Win32Exception
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : System.ComponentModel.Win32Exception,Microsoft.PowerShell.Commands.AddTypeCommand

If you are into this sort of thing, have fun!

Comments (3) -

I can't recreate the error. ,

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Your comments are pretty informed and helpful.  Have you considered writing professionally?  Like a periodical or something?

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