BASICS OF MS – DOS with Example of All Command

MS – DOS is called Micro Soft Disk Operating System. It is an operating system which has developed by MICRO-SOFT. It can control various peripherals which can be attached to printer, Hard-Disk, Floppy- disk drive visual display terminal, Keyboard, Mouse, Plotter.


Dos command help you to give instruction to the operating system in character user interface (CUI) environment. 

Using dos command , you can perform various task, such as creating and managing files and folder and monitoring your system resources. 

A command is the name of a special program that makes your computer carry out a task. 

There are two types of MS-DOS command :

1.Internal command 

2.External command

Internal commands 

  • Internal commands are built in to the operating system as part of a file called COMMAND.COM 
  • When you type an internal command, MS-DOS perform it immediately. 

Example Of Internal Command 

  • CLS , RMDIR , DEL 
  • COPY , VOL , TYPE 
  • DATE , TIME 
  • DIR , SET 

Commands Use For.. 

  • CHKDSK - Checking the condition of a disk 
  • FORMAT – Format a diskette 
  • PRINT – Printing a file 
  • DEL – Delete a file 
  • DIR – Listing the files in a directory 
  • REN – Renaming a file 
  • COPY – Copying a file

External command 

  • Files with extension.com or .EXE are external command. 
  • These commands are files, they are not built in to the operating system. 

Examples of External Commands:- 

  • MODE , JOIN 

Commands Use For.. 

  • DISKCOMP – Comparing two diskettes 
  • DISKCOPY – Copying a diskette 
  • MD – making a directory 
  • CD – Changing a directory 
  • RD – Removing a directory 
  • LABEL – Assign a name to a disk 
  • CLS – Clear the Dos screen


  • Wildcards are symbols that enable you to perform an MS-DOS operation on more than one file at a time 
  • MS-DOS searches for any file whose file name or extension matches the pattern 
  • There are two types of wildcards character. 
  • ? and *

Creating folder 

  • MD or MKDIR Command is used to create a folder. It stands for create directory. 
  • Syntax :MD [drive:][path][directory name] 
  • MKDIR [drive:][path][directory name] 
    (To create a new directory named Raj under D drive.) 
  • Ex- D:\>MD Raj 
    OR D:\>MKDIR Raj

Creating text file 

  • COPY CON command is used to create a text file. 
  • Syntax: 

    COPY CON [File Name] 

    You write the text and press Ctrl-Z keys together to save the contents in the file. 

    Ex – D:\Raj >COPY CON India 

    Now write the text and press Ctrl-Z key to save.

Displaying the contents of a file 

  • TYPE command is use to display the contents of a file. 
  • Syntax: 

     D:\Raj >TYPE [File name] 

    Ex – D:\Raj >India 

    It show all the content of the file. 

Displaying Contents of a Directory 

  • DIR command is used to display the contents of the directory. 
  • Syntax: 

    DIR [drive:] [path] 

    Or DIR [drive:] [path] [/option] 

    Ex – D:\ >DIR or D:\ >DIR/p 

    /p – pauses after each screenful of information. 

    /w-wide list format. 

    /s – looks in subdirectory.

Changing Directory 

  • You can change your working directory by issuing the CD command. Which is stands for change directory. 
  • Syntax: 

    CD[drive:][directory name] 

    To make Raj as a current directory , you can write – 

    D:\ >CD Raj 

    After you write it show D:\Raj > 

    Command for going to the Parent Directory 

    CD.. command is use for getting back to the parent directory. 

  • Syntax: D:\[directory name]>CD.. 
  • Ex:- D:\Raj>CD.. 
  • CD\ command is use for getting back to the root directory. 

    Syntax: D:\ [directory name]>CD\ 

    D:\ Raj>CD\

Renaming File 

  • REN command is used to change the name of a file. 
  • Syntax: 

    REN[drive:][path][old file name] new file name] 

    Ex: To change the name of the file India.txt to Ihm.txt give the following command. 

    D:\Raj>REN India Ihm 

Copying Files 

  • COPY command is used to copy one or more files to an alternate location. 
  • Syntax: 
  • COPY [source] [destination] 

    Ex: To copy bbsr.txt file from the current India directory to Cuttack directory. 

    D:\India>COPY bbsr.txt D:\Cuttack 

Moving Files 

  • MOVE command is used to move a file or files from one location to another location. 
  • Syntax: 
  • MOVE [drive:] [source] [drive:] [target] 
  • Ex: To move Case1.txt file from directory India to directory Orissa. 

    D:\India>MOVE case1.txt D:\Orissa 

Source – specifies the path of the file you want to move. 

Target - specifies the path of the destination directory. 

Deleting Files 

  • DEL command is used to delete file or files from the disk. 
  • Syntax: 
  • DEL [drive:] [path] [file name] 

Ex: To delete Ihm file from India directory. 

D:\India>DEL Ihm 

Deleting Directory 

  • RD command is used to remove a directory 
  • Syntax: 
  • RD [drive:] [path] 
  • Ex: To remove TIM directory from the D: drive. 
  • D:\>RD Tim 

Exiting from Command Prompt 

  • EXIT command is used to exit from the command prompt. 
  • Syntax: 
  • EXIT 
  • When you want to close the Command Prompt window. 
  • D:\>Exit 
  • The directories are called folders in windows. 


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