Using Experimental Features in PowerShell

The Experimental Features support in PowerShell provides a mechanism for experimental features to coexist with existing stable features in PowerShell or PowerShell modules.

An experimental feature is one where the design isn't finalized. The feature is available for users to test and provide feedback. Once an experimental feature is finalized, the design changes become breaking changes.


Experimental features aren't intended to be used in production since the changes are allowed to be breaking. Experimental features aren't officially supported. However, we appreciate any feedback and bug reports. You can file issues in the GitHub source repository.

For more information about enabling or disabling these features, see about_Experimental_Features.

Experimental feature lifecycle

The Get-ExperimentalFeature cmdlet returns all experimental features available to PowerShell. Experimental features can come from modules or the PowerShell engine. Module-based experimental features are only available after you import the module. In the following example, the PSDesiredStateConfiguration isn't loaded, so the PSDesiredStateConfiguration.InvokeDscResource feature isn't available.

Name                             Enabled Source   Description
----                             ------- ------   -----------
PSCommandNotFoundSuggestion        False PSEngine Recommend potential commands based on fuzzy searc…
PSCommandWithArgs                  False PSEngine Enable `-CommandWithArgs` parameter for pwsh
PSFeedbackProvider                  True PSEngine Replace the hard-coded suggestion framework with …
PSLoadAssemblyFromNativeCode       False PSEngine Expose an API to allow assembly loading from nati…
PSModuleAutoLoadSkipOfflineFiles    True PSEngine Module discovery will skip over files that are ma…
PSSubsystemPluginModel              True PSEngine A plugin model for registering and un-registering…

Use the Enable-ExperimentalFeature and Disable-ExperimentalFeature cmdlets to enable or disable a feature. You must start a new PowerShell session for this change to be in effect. Run the following command to enable the PSCommandNotFoundSuggestion feature:

Enable-ExperimentalFeature PSCommandNotFoundSuggestion
WARNING: Enabling and disabling experimental features do not take effect until next start
of PowerShell.

When an experimental feature becomes mainstream, it's no longer available as an experimental feature because the functionality is now part of the PowerShell engine or module. For example, the PSAnsiRenderingFileInfo feature became mainstream in PowerShell 7.3. You get the functionality of the feature automatically.


Some features have configuration requirements, such as preference variables, that must be set to get the desired results from the feature.

When an experimental feature is discontinued, that feature is no longer available in the PowerShell. For example, the PSNativePSPathResolution feature was discontinued in PowerShell 7.3.

Available features

This article describes the experimental features that are available and how to use the feature.


  • The Experimental icon indicates that the experimental feature is available in the version of PowerShell
  • The Mainstream icon indicates the version of PowerShell where the experimental feature became mainstream
  • The Discontinued icon indicates the version of PowerShell where the experimental feature was removed
Name 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 (preview)
PSCommandNotFoundSuggestion Experimental Experimental Experimental Experimental
PSDesiredStateConfiguration.InvokeDscResource Experimental Experimental Experimental Experimental
PSNativePSPathResolution Experimental Discontinued
PSSubsystemPluginModel Experimental Experimental Experimental Experimental
PSNativeCommandArgumentPassing Experimental Mainstream
PSAnsiRenderingFileInfo Experimental Mainstream
PSLoadAssemblyFromNativeCode Experimental Experimental Experimental Experimental
PSNativeCommandErrorActionPreference Experimental Mainstream
PSFeedbackProvider Experimental Experimental
PSModuleAutoLoadSkipOfflineFiles Experimental Experimental
PSCommandWithArgs Experimental Experimental
PSNativeWindowsTildeExpansion Experimental



This feature became mainstream in PowerShell 7.3.

The ANSI formatting features were added in PowerShell 7.2. This feature adds the $PSStyle.FileInfo member and enables coloring of specific file types.

  • $PSStyle.FileInfo.Directory - Built-in member to specify the color for directories
  • $PSStyle.FileInfo.SymbolicLink - Built-in member to specify the color for symbolic links
  • $PSStyle.FileInfo.Executable - Built-in member to specify the color for executables.
  • $PSStyle.FileInfo.Extension - Use this member to define the colors for different file extensions. The Extension member pre-includes extensions for archive and PowerShell files.

For more information, see about_Automatic_Variables.


Recommends potential commands based on fuzzy matching search after a CommandNotFoundException.

PS> get
get: The term 'get' isn't 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.

Suggestion [4,General]: The most similar commands are: set, del, ft, gal, gbp, gc, gci,
gcm, gdr, gcs.


This feature enables the -CommandWithArgs parameter for pwsh. This parameter allows you to execute a PowerShell command with arguments. Unlike -Command, this parameter populates the $args built-in variable that can be used by the command.

The first string is the command and subsequent strings delimited by whitespace are the arguments.

For example:

pwsh -CommandWithArgs '$args | % { "arg: $_" }' arg1 arg2

This example produces the following output:

arg: arg1
arg: arg2

This feature was added in PowerShell 7.4-preview.2.


Enables compilation to MOF on non-Windows systems and enables the use of Invoke-DSCResource without an LCM.

Beginning with PowerShell 7.2, the PSDesiredStateConfiguration module was removed and this feature is disabled by default. To enable this feature you must install the PSDesiredStateConfiguration v2.0.5 module from the PowerShell Gallery and enable the feature.

DSC v3 doesn't have this experimental feature. DSC v3 only supports Invoke-DSCResource and doesn't use or support MOF compilation. For more information, see PowerShell Desired State Configuration v3.


When you enable this feature, PowerShell uses a new feedback provider to give you feedback when a command can't be found. The feedback provider is extensible, and can be implemented by third-party modules. The feedback provider can be used by other subsystems, such as the predictor subsystem, to provide predictive IntelliSense results.

This feature includes two built-in feedback providers:

  • GeneralCommandErrorFeedback serves the same suggestion functionality existing today

  • UnixCommandNotFound, available on Linux, provides feedback similar to bash.

    The UnixCommandNotFound serves as both a feedback provider and a predictor. The suggestion from command-not-found command is used both for providing the feedback when command can't be found in an interactive run, and for providing predictive IntelliSense results for the next command line.

This feature was added in PowerShell 7.4-preview.3.


Exposes an API to allow assembly loading from native code.


With this feature enabled, if a user's PSModulePath contains a folder from a cloud provider, such as OneDrive, PowerShell no longer triggers the download of all files contained within that folder. Any file marked as not downloaded are skipped. Users who use cloud providers to sync their modules between machines should mark the module folder as Pinned or the equivalent status for providers other than OneDrive. Marking the module folder as Pinned ensures that the files are always kept on disk.

This feature was added in PowerShell 7.4-preview.1.



This feature became mainstream in PowerShell 7.3.

When this experimental feature is enabled PowerShell uses the ArgumentList property of the StartProcessInfo object rather than our current mechanism of reconstructing a string when invoking a native executable.


The new behavior is a breaking change from current behavior. This may break scripts and automation that work around the various issues when invoking native applications. Historically, quotes must be escaped and it isn't possible to provide empty arguments to a native application. Use the stop-parsing token (--%) or the Start-Process cmdlet to sidestep native argument passing when needed.

This feature adds a new $PSNativeCommandArgumentPassing preference variable that controls this behavior. This variable allows you to select the behavior at runtime. The valid values are Legacy, Standard, and Windows. The default behavior is platform specific. On Windows platforms, the default setting is Windows and non-Windows platforms default to Standard.

Legacy is the historic behavior. The behavior of Windows and Standard mode are the same except, in Windows mode, invocations of the following files automatically use the Legacy style argument passing.

  • cmd.exe
  • find.exe
  • cscript.exe
  • wscript.exe
  • sqlcmd.exe - Added in PowerShell 7.3.1
  • ending with .bat
  • ending with .cmd
  • ending with .js
  • ending with .vbs
  • ending with .wsf

If the $PSNativeCommandArgumentPassing is set to either Legacy or Standard, the parser doesn't check for these files.

The default behavior is platform specific. On Windows platforms, the default setting is Windows and non-Windows platforms is Standard.


The following examples use the TestExe.exe tool. You can build TestExe from the source code. See TestExe in the PowerShell source repository.

New behaviors made available by this change:

  • Literal or expandable strings with embedded quotes the quotes are preserved:

    PS> $a = 'a" "b'
    PS> TestExe -echoargs $a 'c" "d' e" "f
    Arg 0 is <a" "b>
    Arg 1 is <c" "d>
    Arg 2 is <e f>
  • Empty strings as arguments are preserved:

    PS> TestExe -echoargs '' a b ''
    Arg 0 is <>
    Arg 1 is <a>
    Arg 2 is <b>
    Arg 3 is <>

For more examples of the new behavior, see about_Parsing.

PowerShell 7.3 also added the ability to trace parameter binding for native commands. For more information, see Trace-Command.



This feature became mainstream in PowerShell 7.4.

Native commands usually return an exit code to the calling application that's zero for success or non-zero for failure. However, native commands currently don't participate in the PowerShell error stream. Redirected stderr output isn't interpreted the same as the PowerShell error stream. Many native commands use stderr as an information or verbose stream, thus only the exit code matters. Users working with native commands in their scripts need to check the exit status after each call using similar to the following example:

if ($LASTEXITCODE -ne 0) {
    throw "Command failed. See above errors for details"

However, this example doesn't support all cases where $? can be false from a cmdlet or function error, making $LASTEXITCODE stale.

This feature implements the $PSNativeCommandUseErrorActionPreference preference variable that controls how native commands errors are handled in PowerShell. This allows native command failures to produce error objects that are added to the PowerShell error stream and may terminate execution of the script without extra handling.

$PSNativeCommandUseErrorActionPreference is set to $false by default. With the preference set to $true you get the following behavior:

  • When $ErrorActionPreference = 'Stop', scripts will break when a native command returns a non-zero exit code.
  • When $ErrorActionPreference = 'Continue' (the default), you will see PowerShell error messages for native command errors, but scripts won't break.



This experimental feature was removed in PowerShell 7.3 and is no longer supported.

If a PSDrive path that uses the FileSystem provider is passed to a native command, the resolved file path is passed to the native command. This means a command like code temp:/test.txt now works as expected.

Also, on Windows, if the path starts with ~, that's resolved to the full path and passed to the native command. In both cases, the path is normalized to the directory separators for the relevant operating system.

  • If the path isn't a PSDrive or ~ (on Windows), then path normalization doesn't occur
  • If the path is in single quotes, then it's not resolved and treated as literal


This feature enables the subsystem plugin model in PowerShell. The feature makes it possible to separate components of System.Management.Automation.dll into individual subsystems that reside in their own assembly. This separation reduces the disk footprint of the core PowerShell engine and allows these components to become optional features for a minimal PowerShell installation.

Currently, only the CommandPredictor subsystem is supported. This subsystem is used along with the PSReadLine module to provide custom prediction plugins. In future, Job, CommandCompleter, Remoting and other components could be separated into subsystem assemblies outside of System.Management.Automation.dll.

The experimental feature includes a new cmdlet, Get-PSSubsystem. This cmdlet is only available when the feature is enabled. This cmdlet returns information about the subsystems that are available on the system.


When this feature is enabled, PowerShell expands unquoted tilde (~) to the user's current home folder before invoking native commands. The following examples show how the feature works.

With the feature disabled, the tilde is passed to the native command as a literal string.

PS> cmd.exe /c echo ~

With the feature enabled, PowerShell expands the tilde before it's passed to the native command.

PS> cmd.exe /c echo ~

This feature only applies to Windows. On non-Windows platforms, tilde expansion is handled natively.

This feature was added in PowerShell 7.5-preview.2.