for a full list of XP DOS commands with descriptions - go
Here or HERE
for configuration of your XP DOS box - go Here
All versions of Windows can start a "DOS Box" (DOS emulator) by simply running the command prompt. When a user runs a DOS session within Windows, they are "emulating DOS". The older versions of Windows could even run older versions of MSDOS. XP will not run any of the older versions of MS-DOS, and cannot run command.com - but it does have it's own version of emulated DOS, which uses the same type of base-operating system. With XP you use cmd.com to get to a DOS box ( Start/Run . . . cmd ).
Differences between Win95-98 and XP's Dos Box
Scrolling - with Win95-98, when you tried to run anything that displayed a lot of text, such as a Dir command for a large directory - the text would run off the screen and you could not scroll up - so you had to redirect it to a txt file (for example: dir >output.txt ). The XP dos box has a scroll bar on the right so that you can slide up to see a long list of screen output !!
DOSkey - the XP dos box by default supports "doskey" without the command being issued (with Win98 you had to type in "doskey" as a command to start it up). DOSkey keeps a log of all commands entered, and allows the previous commands to be brought into view by simply hitting the UP arrow. If you have issued 10 commands and want to use the 7th command, you only need to hit the UP arrow 3 times. This is very helpful with long commands.
Copy and Paste (new with XP) - with XP you can copy and paste text from the DOS Box !! You need to click the upper left tiny box once, then a menu comes up. Select Edit/Mark, and then drag the mouse to "mark" (select) the text that you wish to copy. Then all you have to do is hit <Enter> and the text is copied to the Windows Clipboard. Then open up any text-based application such as Word, and hit CTRL-V to paste.
Most of the commands are the same as Win98. We will list the new ones first, then all of them next.
Replaced DOS Commands with XP
Deltree.exe has been replaced with Rmdir.exe (for details see my rmdir page)- deltree has always been an extremely useful DOS-based utility. Unfortunately it was not included with WinXP. You can use rmdir instead (as you are supposed to), OR simply copy deltree into the Windows folder from a Win98 machine. Of course, "rmdir" has different options and switches than deltree, so if you cannot get your hands on a Win98 copy of "deltree.exe" you can download deltree here
Choice.com has been replaced with Set.exe - choice.com was a critical and extremely useful file for DOS batch commands, because it allows you to receive interactive input from the user "after" the bat file begins running. Microsoft removed it because it is made to run in a multitasking environment and could cause instability with XP (go figger !!). Luckily they have a command that does the same thing, the "SET" command. SET not only can act as the Choice command, but it also sets Environment variables to anything you want.You can type set /? for more a long list of detailed info. Here is a sample batch file using the SET command for three possible user input choices and it is easily editable by you, to do anything you wish.
New DOS Commands with XP
bootcfg -View your boot loader settings, such as your default OS and selection timeout, as well as your boot entries and load options.
diskpart -Manages your disk partitions. After you type "diskpart" into your command prompt, your prompt will become "DISKPART." Type a question mark to get a list of possible arguments. Type exit to leave diskpart.
driverquery - Will get you a nice list of your drivers and their properties.
fsutil - This is a handy command. You can do everything from managing your hardlinks to querying the free space in a volume. Type "fsutil" into your command prompt, and you'll see a list of options. I choose "fsinfo" from the list, so I type "fsutil fsinfo" into the prompt. Now I get even more options, but I choose drives by typing "fsutil fsinfo drives." It's fun, it's easy, and you'll get the hang of it. Explore this utility. There are a lot of cool features and hidden twists.
getmac - This gets the MAC (Media Access Control) address.
gpresult - Get the RSoP, user settings, and computer group policy settings.
netsh - A network configuration tool. Type "netsh" to enter the tool, or "netsh /?" to learn more about it. To exit this tool, type "exit" at the "netsh>" prompt.
openfiles - Allows an administrator to display or disconnect open files in XP professional. Type "openfiles /?" for a list of possible parameters.
recover - This command attempts to recover readable information from a damaged disk. Type "recover" to get the syntax.
reg - The console registry tool. Get syntax help when you type "reg" into the prompt. You can export the registry, copy, restore, compare, and more.
schtasks - The administrator can schedule, run, change, or delete tasks on a local or remote machine. Type "schtasks /?" without the quotes for a list of options.
sfc - The system file checker scans protected system files and replaces the ones you (or your applications) hacked beyond repair with the real, official Microsoft versions. Type "sfc" into the command prompt to get a list of options. use "sfc /scannow" to run a full check of all system files.
shutdown - You can shut down or restart your own computer, or an administrator can shut down or restart a remote computer. Type "shutdown" into your command prompt to see a list of possible arguments.
systeminfo - Basic system configuration information, such as the system type, the processor type, your time zone, your virtual memory settings, and much more.
tasklist - Want to know what's going on behind the scenes? Type "tasklist" into the command prompt, and get a list of current processes.
taskkill - Now that you know what's going on behind the scenes, maybe you want to shut a few of these extraneous tasks down. That's where taskkill comes in. Type "taskkill /?" for a quick lesson in the syntax of the command, then shut down all those random processes. I just killed my MS messenger by typing "taskkill /PID 1680." I got the PID from running tasklist, above.
Full Set of DOS Commands with XP
for descriptions - go HERE
Command-line tools must be run at the prompt of the Cmd.exe command interpreter. To open Command Prompt, click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then click OK. To view help at the command-line, at the command prompt, type the following:
Command shell overview
Net services overview
Net services commands
Netsh commands (many)
System File Checker (sfc)
TCP/IP utilities and services
Terminal Services commands