Adding Live Clock to PowerShell Title Bar (Part 1)

To continuously update the PowerShell title bar, and for example display the current date and time, you need a background thread that takes care of this. Without a background thread, your PowerShell would be busy all the time updating the title bar, thus unusable.

Here is a simple piece of code you can run to display a live clock in your title bar:

$code = 
{
    # submit the host process RawUI interface and the execution context
    param($RawUi)

    do
    {
        # compose the time and date display
        $time = Get-Date -Format 'HH:mm:ss dddd MMMM d'
        # compose the title bar text
        $title = "Current Time: $time" 
        # output the information to the title bar of the host process
        $RawUI.WindowTitle = $title
        # wait a half second
        Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 500
    } while ($true)
}
$ps = [PowerShell]::Create()
$null = $ps.AddScript($code).AddArgument($host.UI.RawUI)
$handle = $ps.BeginInvoke()

The crucial thing here is to pass over the $host.UI.RawUI object from your foreground PowerShell to your background thread code. Only then can your background thread access the title bar owned by your foreground PowerShell.

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  • Here are two additional posts on this type of use case.

    'community.idera.com/powershell/powertips/b/tips/posts/adding-clock-to-powershell-console'

    'community.idera.com/powershell/powertips/b/tips/posts/add-a-clock-to-powershell'