Yet times, we need to create temporary files in PowerShell scripts to store the temporary data for the program’s need. These files are created in the temporary folder which was set in the Operating System configuration.
New-TemporaryFile cmdlet to do the job for us to create a temporary file(s) through the scripts.
Create temporary files in PowerShell
New-TemporaryFile cmdlet is used to create the temporary file(s) in the temporary directory. Usually, it creates the file name as “tmpXXXX.tmp”, where ‘XXXX’ is the random hexadecimal number to avoid any conflicts with the existing file names. Here is an example;
PS C:\> New-TemporaryFile Directory: C:\Users\david\AppData\Local\Temp Mode LastWriteTime Length Name ---- ------------- ------ ---- -a---- 11-19-2021 18:33 0 tmp5EA3.tmp
Did you expect this command simply returns the temporary file name? You might have known already that PowerShell commands return the objects; this command returns the
FileInfo object; hence you are seeing the above details of the temporary file. Using the
GetType() method, we can retrieve the type of an object. Here is an example;
PS C:\> (New-TemporaryFile).GetType() IsPublic IsSerial Name BaseType -------- -------- ---- -------- True True FileInfo System.IO.FileSystemInfo
Then, how do we get the temporary filename? Well,
FileInfo object has
FullName property and by accessing this, we can get the full name of the temporary file. We need to store this into a variable to use the same file name; otherwise, every time we call this command it will create a new temporary file.
PS C:\> $TempFile = (New-TemporaryFile).FullName PS C:\> $TempFile C:\Users\david\AppData\Local\Temp\tmp9E59.tmp
Observe that, the command should be enclosed in parentheses (“()”), otherwise we will get the below error.
PS C:\> New-TemporaryFile.FullName New-TemporaryFile.FullName : The term 'New-TemporaryFile.FullName' is not recognized as the name of a cmdlet, function, script file, or operable program. Check the spelling of the name, or if a path was included, verify that the path is correct and try again. At line:1 char:1 + New-TemporaryFile.FullName + ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ + CategoryInfo : ObjectNotFound: (New-TemporaryFile.FullName:String) , CommandNotFoundException + FullyQualifiedErrorId : CommandNotFoundException