Enabling Preview of PowerShell Files in Windows Explorer

When you view PowerShell scripts in Windows Explorer and have the preview pane open, by default you don’t get a code preview for your script files. The preview pane remains blank.

To enable the preview, simply use the function below:

function Enable-PowerShellFilePreview
        $Font = 'Courier New',
        $FontSize = 60
    # set the font and size (also applies to Notepad)
    $path = "HKCU:SoftwareMicrosoftNotepad"
    Set-ItemProperty -Path $path -Name lfFaceName -Value $Font
    Set-ItemProperty -Path $path -Name iPointSize -Value $FontSize
    # enable the preview of PowerShell files
    $path = 'HKCU:SoftwareClasses.ps1'
    $exists = Test-Path -Path $path
    if (!$exists){
        $null = New-Item -Path $Path
    $path = 'HKCU:SoftwareClasses.psd1'
    $exists = Test-Path -Path $path
    if (!$exists){
        $null = New-Item -Path $Path
    $path = 'HKCU:SoftwareClasses.psm1'
    $exists = Test-Path -Path $path
    if (!$exists){
        $null = New-Item -Path $Path

    Get-Item HKCU:SoftwareClasses* -Include .ps1,.psm1,.psd1 | Set-ItemProperty -Name PerceivedType -Value text

Once you run the function, use this command:

PS> Enable-PowerShellFilePreview

If you like, you can also set a font family and size for the preview. Note that this setting is shared with the Notepad:

PS> Enable-PowerShellFilePreview -Font Consolas -FontSize 100

No restart is required to see the effect. Just make sure the preview pane is visible in Windows Explorer, and select a PowerShell file.

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