‘$null =’ in powershell


I saw this Powershell statement in a recent Hanselminutes post

I’m trying to learn Powershell at the moment and I think that I understand most of what is going on –

  • The statement loops through each line of ‘test.txt’ and runs a regex against the current line
  • All the results are collated and then sorted and duplicates removed

My understanding seems to fall down on this part of the statement –

  • What is the ‘$null = ‘ part of the code doing, I suspect this is
    to handle a scenario when no match is returned but I’m not sure how
    it works?
  • Is ‘$matches.x‘ returning the matches found?


Yes, the -match operator results in True or False; assigning to $null suppresses the output.

The (?<>) regex syntax creates a capture group. In this case it’s creating a capture group called x for any characters between <FancyPants> and <.FancyPants>. $matches contains the match info for the last match. Capture groups can be referenced by $matches.CaptureGroupName.

Here is an example you can use to see what is in the $Matches variable.

In this example you would use $Matches.MyMatch to reference the match.


‘$null =’ in powershell by licensed under CC BY-SA | With most appropriate answer!

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