kb0321 - How to shut down / restart the computer with a batch file.


How to shut down / restart the computer with a batch file.


It may be necessary after a batch file is completed its copying or installing process to restart the computer to complete that installation. Below are steps that can be used to restart a computer through a batch file.

MS-DOS Users

If the computer needs to be restarted from MS-DOS please see debug page for additional information on how to do this.

Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows ME Users

Restarting the computer

START C:\Windows\RUNDLL.EXE user.exe,exitwindowsexec

Shut down the computer

C:\Windows\RUNDLL32.EXE user,exitwindows

NOTE: When typing the above two lines, spacing is important. It is also very important that the exit line be placed into the batch file as many times Windows may be unable to restart the computer because of the open MS-DOS window.

Microsoft Windows 98, and Windows ME users may also perform the below command to perform different types of rebooting or shutting down.

rundll32.exe shell32.dll,SHExitWindowsEx n

Where n is equal to one of the below numbers for the proper action.

* 0 - LOGOFF
* 2 - REBOOT
* 4 - FORCE

kb0139 - How to create a blank line in a batch file.


How to create a blank line in a batch file.


It may be necessary to create a blank line to help separate text from other text or move text further down the screen.

To create a line add a dot or period after the echo command, for example:


An alternate solution could be to insert a blank character by typing ALT+255 in the batch file. Although this solution can work, we recommend using 'echo.' as it is a solution that will work in all versions of MS-DOS and Windows.

kb0209 - Information about long file names.


Information about long file names.


In the beginning, Microsoft operating systems such as MS-DOS or Windows 3.x did not support long file names like other operating systems such as Unix, OS/2, and the Apple Macintosh MAC OS. The earlier versions of Microsoft's operating systems had a limitation of an eight character file name or directory, and a three character extension. This standard was more commonly known as 8.3 file naming convention; an example of this would look similar to the below example.


With the release of Windows 95 and the new FAT called VFAT, Microsoft now supported long file names up to 255 characters in length as well as a three character extension without losing backwards compatibility with existing DOS volumes. Because of the backwards compatibility, long file names, if present, are converted by VFAT to the original 8.3 character file naming convention by each file going through the below changes.

1. The extended characters + , ; = [ and ] are converted to underscores ( _ ).
2. The first three characters after a period become the extension.
3. Spaces are ignored.
4. The first six characters now remaining are converted to uppercase.
5. The last two characters after the first six become "~1" . If another file exists with the same first six characters and ~1, the file name will be converted to "~2"; this process will continue. In the event you have more than 9 files with the same first 9 characters, the tenth file becomes ~10, utilizing the last three characters.

Early versions of the Microsoft Windows CDs include a file called LFNBK.EXE that is not installed by default when installing Windows. However, running this file will strip long file names from the VFAT volume and store them in a text file called LFNBK.DAT.

Long file names allow users to input a complete description of their files using any characters they need, except for the below characters.

/ \ : * ? " < > |

With these new features, to access a long filename or directory such as "my long filename or directory", a user would need to use its MS-DOS short name as shown below.


Questions & Answers:

How can I access long file names in Windows NT, Windows 2000, or Windows XP

Unlike earlier versions of Windows, users can access the Windows command line using CMD instead of the COMMAND command. If you open the command line from Run type CMD instead of COMMAND and you will be able to use the full long file name instead of the short 8.3 format name.

How do I access the long file names using Windows 95, Windows 98 or Windows ME MS-DOS?

Accessing long file names can change depending upon how you have entered MS-DOS. If you are in a MS-DOS window (MS-DOS shell aka windows command line) you can access the long file name by typing the complete long file name. If the file contains spaces or the filename or directory is longer than eight characters, place quotes around the long file name as shown below.

cd "program files"

If you have exited Windows to a MS-DOS prompt or booted from a bootable diskette, you will need to use the short file naming convention. For example, if the directory you were trying to get into is "Program Files" you would need to type:

cd progra~1

Note: Users running later versions of Microsoft Windows such as Microsoft Windows 2000 or Windows XP can use spaces in a MS-DOS shell without using the quotes, however, this will not work with all commands.

How can I access a long file name with spaces in a MS-DOS window under Windows 95, Windows 98?

To access a long file name with spaces, place the name of the directory or file name in quotes. An example of how to get into the program files directory would look like:

cd "program files"

How can I access a long file name sub directory without typing each of the directories separately?

If you were attempting to access the directory "Microsoft Office" in the "Program Files" directory you could type:

cd "program files\microsoft office"


cd "c:\program files\microsoft office"

I opened a file with a long file name after saving the file it was saved in the 8.3 character naming convention.

The program you are utilizing more than likely does not support the VFAT. It is recommended that you contact the developer or vendor of the software program for an updated version.

If no new version is available, you will need to use the 8.3 character string format.

Long files are overwritten in a Windows 98 DOS prompt.

If the computer is booted into a command prompt or you use a Windows 98 startup diskette and use long file names, your files will be overwritten. This is a known issue with Microsoft Windows 98 and it's recommended when in MS-DOS to not use long file names and instead use the conventional 8.3 file format names.

kb0036 - How to execute commands in a batch file in timed intervals.


How to execute commands in a batch file in timed intervals.

The solution for executing a batch file or commands in a batch file may change depending on what best fits your needs.

First solution

In the below example, the batch file is placed into a loop and executes the "dir" command every 20 seconds. This solution would be best for users who need to execute a command frequently.

REM Execute the MS-DOS dir command ever 20 seconds.

Note: In order for the above batch file to run properly you must have the sleep MS-DOS utility on the computer. This utility is not included with any version of MS-DOS or Windows. However, once downloaded will allow your computer to sleep / delay for any specified amount of seconds. See our utility download page for a download link.

Second solution

Our next solution is for users who need to execute a batch file but only need to execute the command every few hours, days, months, or years. Instead of relying on the batch file continuously running, we recommend that a user utilize an utility that will execute the batch file when the date and/or time arrives.

Microsoft Windows NT, 2000, and XP users, for example, can use the AT command to schedule timed events through MS-DOS.

kb0010 - Deleting files in MS-DOS without a prompt.


Deleting files in MS-DOS without a prompt.


To help prevent files from becoming accidentally deleted Microsoft will warn you before deleting files or folders.


By default Microsoft Windows will not prompt a user or give a user a prompt or warning when deleting files on a computer using the del command. However, when attempting to delete a directory using the deltree or rmdir command on a directory that is not empty you will receive a warning and/or error message about deleting the directory.

To suppress the prompting use the deltree command and add the tag /y. Here is an example of how the whole command would look, deltree c:\windows\temp\*.* /y However, this does not work in all versions of Windows and or DOS.

If this command does not work we would recommend that you create a batch file with the below command in the batch file.

echo y | del %1\*.*

Once created, you can type the name of the batch file then the name of the directory that you wish to delete.

Microsoft Windows 2000 and Windows XP users

Users who wish to delete a directory containing files in a MS-DOS session running under Microsoft Windows 2000 or Windows XP can also use the rmdir or rd command with the /S option.

Please remember that when you delete files or directories from the computer they are permanently removed, so be careful! Microsoft Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and later versions of Windows users deleting files through MS-DOS should realize that all deleted files will not be sent to the recycle bin.

Other users using MS-DOS through Windows

Users running MS-DOS through later versions of Microsoft Windows can also utilize the erase command to delete files without a prompt. Microsoft Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and later versions of Windows users deleting files through MS-DOS should realize that all deleted files will not be sent to the recycle bin.

kb2005 - Technical Support (SDK)

Knowledge Base
Issue / Question
kb0010Deleting files in MS-DOS without a prompt.
kb0036How to execute commands in a batch file in timed intervals.
kb0209Information about long file names.
kb0319Creating a blank line in a batch file.
kb0321How to shut down / restart the computer with a batch file.
kb0322How to run a batch file each time the computer boots.
kb0323How to quickly replace the file extensions of several files.
kb0435How to make a bat executable?
kb0738Preventing a MS-DOS window from automatically closing in Windows.
kb0754Deleting files equal to 0 in a batch file.
kb0785How can I run a batch file at a specific time?
kb0932How can I run a batch file or other file minimized?
kb0987How can I make a batch file rename a file to the date or time?
kb0050How can I loop or start a batch file over after it has completed?
kb0952Searching for a string of text in a MS-DOS batch file.

kb2004 - Batch commands (SDK)

Just like all MS-DOS commands, all batch file commands are not case sensitive. However, in the below listing we have listed all commands in all caps to help you identify what is a command and what is not.

@Does not echo back the text after the at symbol. This is most commonly used as @ECHO OFF to prevent any of the commands in the batch file from being displayed, just the information needed.

%1The percent followed by a numeric value, beginning with one, allows users to add variables within a batch file. The below line is an example of what can be used in a batch file.

ECHO Hello %1

When the above one-line batch file is created, add your name after the batch file. For example, typing myname (being the name of the bat file) and then your name:

myname bob

would output:

Hello bob

Note: This can be extended to %2, %3, and so on.

::One of two ways of adding remarks into the batch file without displaying or executing that line when the batch file is run.

:LABELBy adding a colon in front of a word, such as LABEL, you create a category, more commonly known as a label. This allows you to skip to certain sections of a batch file such as the end of the batch file. Also see GOTO.

CALLThis is used to run another batch file within a batch file. When the batch file that is called is completed, the remainder of the original batch file is completed. Note if the batch file does not exist it will give an error message.

CHOICESee running different programs for an example of how to use this command.
  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our CHOICE command page.

CLSJust like the DOS command would clear your screen.
  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our CLS command page.

ECHOWill echo a message in the batch file. Such as ECHO Hello World will print Hello World on the screen when executed. However, without @ECHO OFF at the beginning of the batch file you'll also get "ECHO Hello World" and "Hello World." Finally, if you'd just like to create a blank line, type ECHO. adding the period at the end creates an empty line.

EXITExits out of the DOS window if the batch file is running from Windows.
  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our EXIT command page.

GOTO LABELUsed to go to a certain label, such as LABEL. An example of GOTO would be to GOTO END. For an example of this see running different programs.
  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our GOTO command page.

IFUsed to check for a certain condition if the condition exists. If that condition exists it will perform that function. To see an example of this see running different programs.

  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our IF command page.

PAUSEPrompt the user to press any key to continue.

REMOne of two ways of adding remarks into the batch file without displaying or executing that line when the batch file is run.

SHIFTChanges the position of replaceable parameters in a batch program.
  • Additional information and the syntax of this command in each version of Windows and MS-DOS can be found on our SHIFT command page.

STARTUsed for Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT 4.0 and above to start a windows application; such as START C:\WINDOW\CALC would run the Windows Calculator. Users running Windows 3.x need to utilize the WIN command. For example, WIN C:\Windows\CALC.EXE would run Windows and then Calculator after Windows has finished loading.

kb2003 - How to make a time log in a batch file (SDK)

The below example demonstrates how to create a time log of when the batch file is loaded, or for example, this could be used in the autoexec.bat when someone logs into a computer that supports this file.


An alternate, slightly more complicated method that, to our knowledge, cannot be used in Windows NT, Windows 2000 or Windows ME would be the following:

echo @prompt set date=$d$_set time=$t$h$h$h > {a}.bat
%comspec% /e:2048 /c {a}.bat > {b}.bat
for %%v in ({b}.bat del) do call %%v {?}.bat
echo %date% %time% >> log

Another alternative is:

echo. |time |find "current" >> log

For the above batch file to work properly you must create a file called log, by typing edit log and then save and exit the file, creating a 0 bytes file. If this file is not created or not created properly you will receive the error message Content of destination lost before copy.

kb2102 - Creating a batch file delay (SDK)

Below is an example of how to delay a batch file any where from 5 to 99 seconds. In the below example we illustrate a 5 second delay.


Additionally, you could use the sleep file found on Computerhope utility download section.

kb2101 - Start Windows files and other programs from a batch file (SDK)

To run Microsoft Windows programs or files use the START command. The below example would run Windows Notepad.


You can also specify the direct location of the file by typing the below command.


*Windows users who have a different directory (e.g. Windows 2000 users) would need to substitute WINNT or the name of their directory in place of Windows in the above example.

The /m representing it to start the window Maximized.

kb2100 - Running different programs (SDK)

Below is a simple example of how you can implement the choice options into your batch files. Each line that is in red can be left out of the batch file.

They have been included to help explain some of what the batch file means. Windows 2000 and Windows XP users will need to substitute the choice command with the set command; see our set command page for additional help and information with this command.

CHOICE /N /C:123 PICK A NUMBER (1, 2, or 3)%1

kb2002 - An example of DOS batch file (SDK)

This article contains downloadable template

Get user input from batch file

Sure, you've done it, but can you do it without having to hit a Ctrl-Z, without ANSI, without a debug script, and without a separate "set" file?

Get user input and mask passwords with HTML

HTML forms can mask passwords as you enter them, so use forms! Here I show you how to have your batch file create a username/password form, then use Windows Scripting to read the contents of that form and transfer the results back into a batch file. As shown, it uses the environment, so you may need to modify things if your target computers don't have room.

Get user input and mask password with HTA

HTML Applications (HTA files) can do everything ordinary HTML can, but there is no need to separate the HTML from the scripting in order to save the results to the hard drive. Like the above HTML method, this creates a batch file named "userin.bat" in the "temp" directory which can be called by your batch file to retrieve the data.

Mask passwords with QBASIC

QBASIC allows you to grab user input without echoing it to the screen. This makes it easy to throw an asterisk up for every character that gets entered. Again, this code stores the password in the environment for your batch file to use. FYI, Win9x boxes don't come with QBASIC installed by default. See here for how to get QBASIC and here for how to install it automatically.

Get user input from an NT batch file

All the old tricks fail. Luckily, QBASIC can be used and is standard equipment in NT. Windows Scripting works better if you have it.

Accept arguments in any order

Simon Richardson shows how to use structured batch programming (as best as batch can do it) to collect arguments. Then I show how to break that structure.

Accept arguments in any order

Fred Fisher said he could improve on the above method to collect arguments. I think you'll agree he did! He does it with a few more IFs and a lot less GOTOs. He demonstrates three separate argument types. One is a switch, another takes one argument, and the last takes two separate arguments. You can easily simplify (or extend) the code for any number of arguments each taking any number of parameters.

How to get around the "Do you really want to do this?" prompt.

Have your batch file send the desired answer..

How to simulate typing to any program.

Send your program keystrokes whether it is a DOS or Windows program. This isn't "User Input", but is more along the lines of simulating a user who isn't there. Great for automating programs that weren't designed to be automated.

kb2001 - Creating a DOS Batch (SDK)

for MS-DOS users

To create a basic batch file in MS-DOS, follow the below steps that give you an example of how to create a basic batch file.

1. Open an MS-DOS command window or get to MS-DOS. Additional information about doing this can be found on document CHDOS.
2. At the MS-DOS prompt, type: edit test.bat and press enter.
3. If typed properly, you should now be in a blue screen. Within the screen, type:

dir c:\windows
dir c:\windows\system

4. Once the above three lines have been typed in, click File and choose exit; when prompted to save, click "Yes." Users who do not have a mouse cursor can accomplish this same task by pressing ALT+F to access the file menu, then pressing "X" to exit, and pressing enter to save changes.
5. Once you are back at the MS-DOS prompt, type: test and press enter. This will execute the test.bat file and begin running the file. Because the first line is pause, you will first be prompted to press a key. Once you press a key the batch file will run line-by-line; in this case, listing the files in the windows and windows\system directories.

If you wish to add more lines to this batch file you would simply type "edit test.bat" to edit the file again.

Additional information about the MS-DOS edit command can be found on our edit command page. Some versions of MS-DOS and bootable diskettes may not have the edit command; if this is the case, you would either need to obtain the edit.com file to access this file or use the copy con command.

for Microsoft Windows and other users

A Windows user can still use the above MS-DOS steps if they wish to create a batch file. If, however, you're more comfortable using Microsoft Windows or your operating system, you can use any text editor, such as Notepad or Wordpad, to create your batch files, as long as the file extension ends with .bat. In the below example we use the Windows notepad to create a batch file.

1. Click Start
2. Click Run
3. Type: notepad and press enter.
4. Once notepad is open, type the below lines in the file or copy and paste the below lines into notepad.

@echo off
echo Hello this is a test batch file
dir c:\windows

5. Click File and click Save; browse to where you want to save the file. For the file name, type "test.bat", and if your version of Windows has a "Save as type" option, choose "All files", otherwise it will save as a text file. Once all of this has been done click the Save button and exit notepad.
6. Now, to run the batch file, simply double-click or run the file like any other program. Once the batch file has completed running it will close the window automatically.

kb1000 - What is DOS Batch?

Batch files allow MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows users to create a lists of commands to run in sequence once the batch file has been executed. For example, a batch file could be used to run frequently run commands, deleting a series of files, moving files, etc. A simple batch file does not require any special programming skills and can be done by users who have a basic understanding of MS-DOS commands.

A good example of a batch file for someone who is more familiar with Windows or the MacOS is to think of a batch file as a shortcut in Windows or an icon on the MacOS. Much like a shortcut, batch files could be used to run one or more commands and/or programs through the command line.

Another example of a very well known batch file is the autoexec.bat, which is a simple boot file loaded each time the computer is loaded on MS-DOS and early Windows computers. This batch file contained all the necessary commands and programs used to run MS-DOS and Windows each time the computer booted.

Download Games

Games that is ported to SkyFireOS is mainly licensed and shareware. Support the contributor / creators by buying original or full version of the games.

Download Duke Nuke' Em for SkyFireOS

Aliens have landed in futuristic Los Angeles, and it's up to Duke to bring the pain and show them the door. It's time to start kicking ass and chewing gum - and he's all out of gum!

Featuring network play and high-res support, Duke Nukem proved popular for years, spawning several add-ons (both licensed and unlicensed).

Download Now ( Mirror 1 | Mirror 2 -10.5 MB ) - Website

Download Command and Conquer for SkyFireOS

It's a classic real-time strategy game. There exist two parties, NOD and GDI. Both have different units and structures. The game features about 15 missions on each side. In most missions you have to build a base first to build new units and structures.

Special harvesters collect the so-called 'tiberium' and convert it to money in a refinery. The game features full motion video after every mission.

Download Hospital Theme for SkyFireOS

Theme Hospital is a level-based hospital management simulation where players have to start on an empty building, and then assemble rooms with all kinds of material, from desks and file cabinets for the general diagnosis to the expensive ultra-scanners and x-rays to diagnose such bizarre diseases such as Bloaty Head, Slack Songue or Alien DNA, and treat them with with even more bizarre machines like an Head Inflator or a DNA fixer.

Download Checkers for SkyFireOS

A translation of classic checkers. You jump over the opponent's buttons, and the last one standing wins. This game doesn't posses the option of playing against the computer, only player vs. player (unless you register to get the full version).

Download Megaman-X for SkyFireOS

Mega Man X is a robot designed by Dr. Light to choose his own path in life. Years after he is created, Dr. Cain finds X and mimics his design to create a race of such robots called reploids. When the sigma virus infects these reploids, causing them to commit acts of evil, it is up to Mega Man X and his partner Zero (who is quite powerful, contrary to what his name implies) to stop it.

Download Street Fighters 2 for SkyFireOS

The original Street Fighter II is a famous fighting game. Players select from one of eight characters: Ryu, Ken, Blanka, E. Honda, Zangief, Chun Li, Guile and Dhalsim to do battle with. They must then use their combat strengths to defeat the other seven fighters followed by four boss characters: M. Bison, Vega, Sagat and Balrog. Each character represents a certain country and has their own reasons for wanting to win against the others.