windows command

Basic Windows Commands That You Should Know

Basic Windows Commands Complete List

So in this section, we will discuss some of the most used basic commands of windows and frequently used switches with them. Now why the hell in the world of Graphical User Interface (GUI) of windows I need to learn windows commands? The answer is, no matter how much cool the GUI appears, the most powerful feature of any OS till today is its shell when comes to control, I may hardly get any to disagree on this and shell is handled with the help of shell interpreter/emulator better known as a command line in common, command prompt in windows and terminal/konsole/tsch/zch etc. in Linux depending on shell emulator. As a ethical hacker you must be able to master most of the commands and their most commonly used switches. So get ready to have a look on them


List of useful and frequently used DOS Commands

CHDIR – Displays the name of or changes the current directory.

CHKDSK – Checks a disk and displays a status report.

CLS – Clears the screen.

COMP – Compares two groups of files to find information that does not match.

COPY – Copies and appends files.

DATE – Displays and/or sets the system date.

DEFRAG – Optimizes disk performance by reorganizing the files on the disk.

DEL – Deletes files from disk.

DELTREE – Deletes a directory including all files and subdirectories that are in it.

DIR – Displays directory of files and directories stored on disk.

DISKCOMP – Compares the contents of two diskettes.

ECHO – Displays messages or turns on or off the display of commands in a batch file.

EDIT – Starts the MS-DOS editor, a text editor used to create and edit ASCII text files.

EXIT – Exits a secondary command processor.

EXPAND – Expands a compressed file.

FASTHELP – Displays a list of DOS commands with a brief explanation of each.

FIND – Finds and reports the location of a specific string of text characters in one or more files.

FOR – Performs repeated execution of commands (for both batch processing and interactive processing).

FORMAT – Formats a disk to accept DOS files.

GRAPHICS – Provides a way to print contents of a graphics screen display.

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IF – Allows for conditional operations in batch processing.

LABEL – Creates or changes or deletes a volume label for a disk.

MEM – Displays amount of installed and available memory, including extended, expanded, and upper memory.

MKDIR – Creates a new subdirectory.

MORE – Sends output to console, one screen at a time.

MOVE – Moves one or more files to the location you specify. Can also be used to rename directories.

PATH – Sets or displays directories that will be searched for programs not in the current directory.

RENAME – Changes the filename under which a file is stored.

RMDIR – Removes a subdirectory.

SORT – Sorts input and sends it to the screen or to a file.

XCOPY – Copies directories, subdirectories, and files.

Now so far as I think no one can remember all those switches so better try to use “command /?” this will open help pages for command. Note that we haven’t yet covered all commands we just took an overlook over most basic windows commands, with time we’ll move ahead and learn some really complicated commands and their switches. Till then I recommend you to try to run and execute all these commands and also try to find out other switches used while using commands by post-fixing commands with /? Commands like “set” and “net” may themselves need two to three posts like this so its better to cover them when need arrives. Till then if you have problem executing any of above commands feel free to ask.

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Sauhard Lashkari
A graduate in Computer Science from the KNIT, Sultanpur. Sauhard holds a 4-year experience in blogging. Being a passionate blogger/content writer too, Sauhard is an active volunteer in Make-A-Wish NGO and member of Toastmasters International.
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