DOS Tutorial

MS-DOS Operating System Most Personal Computers run under the MS-DOS Operating System. MS-DOS being the Microsoft Disk Operating System.

It is estimated that almost 10 million machines run under the MS-DOS Operating System and some 20,000 or more end-user applications have been published to run with it.


The Operating System is the program which provides organized services to the computer user and the application programs that they wish to use.
These services consist mainly of access to the hardware resources such as the disk drives, keyboard, etc.


Disks and Drives

  Because most of our computers Memory (RAM) is temporary, its contents are erased when we switch off the power. We need a place to store the Operating System, application programs and our work. That’s where disks come in, we store any information you want to keep onto disks.   There are two types of …

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Introduction to DOS

MS-DOS   Starting MS-DOS… C:\>_   An example of MS-DOS’s command-line interface, this one showing that the current directory is the root of drive C.   Company/ developer: Microsoft OS family: DOS Source model: Closed source Latest stable release: 8.0 / September 14, 2000 Kernel type: Monolithic kernel Default user interface: DOS CLI License: Proprietary …

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History of DOS

MS-DOS began as QDOS (for Quick and Dirty Operating System), written by Tim Paterson for computer manufacturer Seattle Computer Products (SCP) in 1980. It was marketed by SCP as 86-DOS because it was designed to run on the Intel 8086 processor. QDOS function calls were based on the dominant CP/M-80 operating system, written by Digital …

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Activating DOS from Window

DOS stands for Disk Operating System. DOS controls the computer’s hardware and provides an environment for programs to run. This system program must always be present when working with our computer.   There are a variety of reasons why we need DOS. A few of them are listed below to satisfy our curiosity.   1. …

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Activating DOS from Window

To activate DOS from Windows we will need the following steps: 1) Locate the MS-DOS icon on the Desktop. 2) Now move the mouse-pointer over the MS-DOS icon present on the Desktop and double click the left mouse button. Instantly, the DOS screen along with a prompt(C:\>) is displayed. Or we can do it like …

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The DOS Prompt

Once the DOS is loaded into the RAM from the disk, it displays a prompt on the screen, indicating that it is ready to accept instruction from us. We can type all our command at this Prompt.   The DOS Prompt looks like:-   When we first turn on our computer, we will see some …

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Typing A Command in DOS

Typing a Command Here we explains how to type a command at the command prompt and demonstrates the “Bad command or file name” message.   • To type a command at the command prompt 1. Type the following at the command prompt (we can type the command in either uppercase or lowercase letters): nul   …

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  DOS Commands are of two types: • Internal Command • External Command     INTERNAL commands Internal commands do not required any special files for being executed and are brought into the computer’s memory as soon as the computer is switched on.   Internal commands are memory resident commands. They are resident in the …

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EXTERNAL commands In DOS

External Commands require certain special DOS files to get executed. External commands are MS-DOS utilities / programs. These are the .EXE or .COM programs located on our hard drive. They are normally placed under C:\DOS, the default directory. MS-DOS will load external commands if and only if we instruct to execute them at the DOS …

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Directory Command

The DIRECTORY command is like a table of contents in a book. This directory will list the following information: • Filenames • File extensions • Size of each file • Date and time the file was last updated.     Directions: 1. At the C:\> type: dir and press Enter(return.) 2. The list of files …

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Pause a Directory Listing

We can add a PAUSE command to our directory command which will allow us to view our directory one screen at a time.   Directions: 1. Type: dir/p and press Enter.   2. The screen freezes after it fills the screen with the files that are listed first in the directory.   3. Press the …

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Recall a DOS Command

The F3 function key can be used to recall the last DOS command we typed in. If we would like to retrieve a previously entered command, we can also press the up arrow key continuously until we reach the desired command we were looking for.   NOTE: We can also type out each letter in …

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Check for a Single File

Instead of using the directory command to look for one particular file, we can type the name of the file after the DIR command at the C:\> prompt.   Directions: 1. Make sure that we are at our C:\> prompt. 2. Type: dir (filename.extension) and press Enter. 3. The screen will display a listing …

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Check for a Group of Files

The * symbol is referred to as a wildcard and stands for any character or group of characters. This is helpful when we want to list files that start with a particular letter or group.   Directions: 1. Type: dir c* and press Enter. 2. All filenames that begin with the letter C will be …

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