Basics of MS DOS: An Overview

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  • Topic: File system, MS-DOS, Batch file
  • Pages : 30 (7665 words )
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  • Published : November 20, 2011
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Learning MS-DOS Basics
2.MS-DOS Commands.2
2.1.Internal commands2
2.2.External Commands2
3.The Command Prompt3
4.Typing a Command3
5.Viewing the Contents of a Directory3
5.1To view the contents of a directory one screen at a time4 5.2To view the contents of a directory in wide format5
6.Changing Drives5
7.Changing Directories6
7.1Changing directories6
7.2Changing Back to the Root Directory7
8.Creating a Directory7
9.Deleting a Directory8
10.Copying Files9
10.1Copying a Single File9
10.2Copying a Group of Files9
11.Renaming Files10
12.Deleting Files11
12.1Deleting a Group of Files11
12.2To delete a directory11
13.Check the Date and Time11
14.Recall a DOS Command11
15.Create a File with DOS11
16.To check the contents of a file12
17.Editing Text Files12
18.Checking the Condition of a Disk12
20.Using The ATTRIB Command13
21.The COLOR Command14
22.Symbols used with commands15
23.The PATH Command16
24.The EXIT Command16
25.Batch Files17
25.1Requirements for Creating batch files17
25.2How to create a batch file17
25.3Working with arguments18
25.4The Rem statement19
25.5Prompting for user input19
25.6How to start Windows files and other programs from a batch file20 25.7Conditional branching with "If" statements20
25.8"If exist" statement20
25.9The "goto" command22
25.10Iterating with "For"24
26.Other Important MS-DOS Commands28
This tutorial gives you an opportunity to try basic MS-DOS commands.


Most Personal Computers run under the MSDOS Operating System. MSDOS being the Microsoft Disk Operating System. The Operating System has three main constituents:-
• The system files which are hidden. Perform - basic tasks e.g. reading the keyboard, displaying characters on the screen, opening and closing files etc. • The command interpreter (CMD.EXE) - which reads commands typed at the keyboard and attempts to obey them. It has some simple commands built in - these are known as internal commands. • A series of utility programs covering functions not handled by the internal commands. The exact number of external commands varies between different versions of MSDOS.

MS-DOS Commands.

A command is the name of a special program that makes your computer carry out a task. There are two types of MS-DOS commands - internal and external.

1 Internal commands

Internal commands are built into the operating system as part of a file called CMD.EXE. They are loaded into memory whenever you switch on your computer. When you type an internal command, MS-DOS performs it immediately. Some of the MS-DOS internal commands are listed below. Small reference of internal DOS commands

1. del, erase - delete files
2. rd, rmdir - delete directories
3. dir - show content of directories
4. cd, chdir - change current directory
5. cls - clear the screen
6. md, mkdir - create a directory
7. copy - copy of one or several files
8. ren, rename - rename of files or directories
9. type - shows the content of text files
10. vol - shows the name of the storage drive

2 External Commands

Files with extension COM or EXE are external commands. Because these commands are files, they are not built into the operating system ( these are the commands that alter between versions of MS-DOS) . The MS-DOS external commands may contain SOME or all of the following, Small reference of external DOS commands

• attrib - shows the attributes of files or set one of those • fdisk - partitioning or modify of the hard disk
• move - move of files
• mem - shows the occupancy of working memory
• tree - shows the directory structure
When you type an external command, MS-DOS looks for the command in the current directory. If it is not there, you must guide MS-DOS to the relevant directory with the PATH command....
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