The Command Window

Many problems in Windows can best (or sometimes only) be resolved by commands entered in a command window.

  • Hit the Start button.
  • Hit the Run selection.
  • Type “cmd” into the Run window (less the “”), and hit Enter.
  • A new window, titled “(ComputerName) Command Prompt” will open.
  • Now type whatever you need, into the Command Prompt window, with the cursor positioned for you after the “>”, and hit the Enter key after each command.
  • Remember to allow for the Path, and the location of the program that you’re running, if necessary.
  • Close the window when convenient.

If you run ipconfig, for instance, as

ipconfig /all

you will get the ipconfig output there in the command window. This is good to look at briefly, but isn’t very good to copy. Copying from the command window can be done, but will be hard to read.

Redirected Output
By redirecting the output, you can view it and / or copy it in a more convenient way, so it’s suitable for posting online. Instead of typing

ipconfig /all


ipconfig /all >c:\ipconfig.txt

With the latter command, instead of getting the ipconfig output there in the command window, all you’ll see in the command window is another “C:\>”. Then, type

notepad c:\ipconfig.txt

and Notepad will open with the ipconfig output in a more viewable, and copyable, format.

Concatenated, Redirected Output
Do you need the output from two commands, run one after the other, presented in a text file? Be sure to concatenate the output from the second onto the first, don’t overlay the first.

browstat status >c:\browstat.txt
browstat listwfw >>c:\browstat.txt

Note the “>>” in the second command; that concatenates the output from the second command, after the output from the first command.

Finally, type

notepad c:\browstat.txt

and Notepad will open with both browstat outputs, one following the other, in c:\browstat.txt.


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