When running a console-based application, it typically returns a numeric exit code. The meaning of this exit code is up to the console-based application, and you’d have to look it up there. PowerShell does hand you the exit code, though. It surfaces in $LASTEXITCODE.
Here is an example using ping.exe to test for network response:
$hostname = 'powershellmagazine.com' # run console-based executable directly # and disregard text results $null = ping.exe $hostname -n 2 -w 2000 # instead look at the exit code delivered in # $LASTEXITCODE. Ping.exe returns 0 if a # response was received: $IsOnline = $LASTEXITCODE -eq 0 $IsOnline