Here I am going to explain few basic and often used commands used for constructing a simple
batch program. Before getting into the commands, there are few thing that I need to explain in detail, and
they were ‘sub-commands’, ‘switches’ and ‘parameters’.
Sub-commands are nothing but the supportive commands that are used along with the main
commands to narrow down the result that we are looking for. For example, I want to view how many user
accounts are there created in my computer, and this can be done using the “net” command, as below,
As you can see in the above screenshot, ‘net’ is the main command, where as ‘user’ is the sub-command
used for narrowing down the result that we want. A main command can have any number of subcommands
and that too depends upon the usage. Once the command gets executed, its displaying all the
available user accounts in my computer.
Say, for instance i am going to create a new user account in my computer by making use of the
“net” command, and the user account that I wish to create is “technocrawl” with password “P4$$w0rd”
and this can be done using the following command,
As you can see in the above screenshot, ‘switch’ is used again to narrow down the operation of the
command that being performed, and most often switches are prefixed with as backward slash ‘/’ or with
an hyphen ‘-‘.
The above command have created a new user account named “technocrawl” with the password
‘Parameters’ can also be referred as ‘command line arguments’ and are nothing but the input
supplied to the program by the user while the program is running, and depending upon the parameter the
program will proceed the further operation.
Copy the below given code into a notepad and save it as ‘welcome.bat’. Goto command prompt
and run the program by using its name “welcome.bat” (Make sure that the ‘welcome.bat’ exists in the
directory where you want to run).
echo Welcome %1%
Where, ‘welcome’ is the batch file name and its followed by the parameter, here the parameter is
Note: You can specify ‘n’ number of parameters for a batch file. Each parameter can be accessed by
using the “%number%” format, where you have to replace the ‘number’ with 1 to access the first
parameter value, and ‘2’ for accessing the second parameter value and viceversa. Incase if I want to
access the file name then it can be access by using %0%, and for accessing the fifth parametes %5% and
‘Help’ is the command that is used to display the available internal commands supported by
windows, so that you can type ‘help’ to know the internal commands available on your computer. Each
command has its own sub-commands and switches, and to find out the usage of each command in detail,
then you may use the ‘/?’ (without quotes) followed by the command, for example, if I want to know
what are the available sub-commands and switches for the ‘net’ command, then I can use the ‘net /?’
command to get more details.
The ‘rem’ command is used for commenting the source code, so whatever that follows the ‘rem’
was ignored. The ‘rem’ command is often used for commenting large batch programs for easy
identification incase of updating of modifications.
Rem Program for printing hello world.
Echo Hello World.
In the above example, the ‘rem’ command is used for commenting the purpose of the program, but its not
necessary for this too simple code.
As said earlier ‘echo’ command is just like ‘printf’ statement in C programming, this is used to
display the text that follows the command on the output screen. Echo command when used alone will
display the state, whether it’s turned ON or OFF. By default the echo is turned ON, but it’s always
recommended for batch programmers to turn OFF the echo, so that it won’t display the prompts like
(C:\>) and so on.
You can turn OFF the echo command by using the command “echo off”, and to turn it ON, you can
replace the OFF with ON in the above command.