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Lab 11 Batch files


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Lab 11 - Batch files


Exercise 1 – Create your first batch file 2

Exercise 2 – Create a directory structure 2

Run the batch file EX2.BAT. Are you now in a different folder to the one you were in before you ran the batch file. You should not move directory as a result of running a batch file unless that is part of the batch file. 3

Exercise 3 – Wildcards example 3

Exercise 4 – Wildcards example 3

Exercise 5 – Wildcards example 3

Batch commands 4

Exercise 6 - Wildcards Example 5

Exercise 7 – Copy from one drive to another 5

Exercise 8 – Creating a Directory structure 5

Exercise 9 – Copying and moving files 6

Exercise 10 – Removing directories 6

Exercise 11 – Using the ECHO COMMAND 6

Exercise 12 – Using the call command 7

Exercise 13 – Replaceable parameters 7

Exercise 14 – Replaceable parameters 7

Exercise 15 – Replaceable parameters 8

Exercise 16 – Replaceable parameters 8

Exercise 17 – Paths 10

Revision Questions: Taken from past exam papers 10


Ref: www.chebucto.ns.ca/~ak621/DOS/BatBasic.html

Batch files are files that contain a list of commands. It executes the commands within the file when you execute the batch file. The commands execute one by one. A command within a batch file can be used to start/run another application, for example you could start MS Word.

Why batch files are useful?

A batch file could be used to run frequently run commands, deleting a series of files, moving files, copying files etc. A simple batch file does not require any special programming skills and can be done by users who only know DOS commands.

An example of a well known batch file is the autoexec.bat, which is a simple batch 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.

Use your VMware accounts to do this lab sheet because you will need to save your work.



Important:

You should practice the DOS commands at the command line to ensure you know how they work before putting them into the batch file.


Exercise 1 – Create your first batch file


  1. Open an MS-DOS command window.

  2. Change to the root directory of the C drive and create a directory called BatchFiles. You can use this directory to save your batch files.

  3. Change into Batchfiles folder. Create a new file called Ex1.bat using notepad.

  4. To do this type notepad ex1.bat at the command line.

  5. Type in the following lines into the file and Save. Each of the lines below is a command.

cls

ver


pause
dir c:\windows


  1. Before continuing, can you remember what the effect of each of the 4 commands that you have typed into the file? If not – look them up in the help.

  2. Make sure you are in the Batchfiles folder.

  3. Key in DIR and MAKE SURE you see a file called EX1.BAT

  4. At the prompt, type in the name of the batch file i.e. Ex1 and press Enter.

  5. Understand the outcome.

10. Put the command @ECHO OFF as the first line into Ex1.bat.

Run the batch file again. What is effect of this statement?

...................................................................................................................................

.
Important:
Save your batch files to the BatchFiles folder
.................................................................................................................................

Exercise 2 – Create a directory structure


Write a batch program called EX2.BAT that creates the following directory structure on drive C.

C:\


ACCOUNTS

COLLEGE

Letters

Email

Java

Apps



Check either in Explorer or at the prompt that the directory structure shown above has been created.

Add comments to all your batch files using Rem command at start of the line. The comments should indicate the following:


- Date written

Run the batch file EX2.BAT. Are you now in a different folder to the one you were in before you ran the batch file. You should not move directory as a result of running a batch file unless that is part of the batch file.


Exercise 3 – Wildcards example


Write a batch program called EX3.BAT that lists all files which start with the letter M and have the extension of .EXE on drive C. It should search from the root down through all the subdirectories.
If you want to terminate a batch file during execution, press Ctrl + C.


Exercise 4 – Wildcards example


Write a batch program called EX4.BAT that lists all files that match any of the following criteria within the root of the C drive and down through its subdirectories:
a) Files with an extension of COM and have 4 letters in the filename. e.g., chcp.com mode.com etc.
b) EXE files whose 2nd letter is I e.g., WINHELP.EXE DIAGS.EXE etc.
Make sure the output does not scroll up the screen too quickly.

Put a pause command in between parts a) and b)




Exercise 5 – Wildcards example


Write a batch program called EX5.BAT that lists all files that match any of the following criteria within the Windows folder and down through its sub directories:
a) Files that have an extension that starts with the letter C.

b) List folders and files that don’t have any extension


Batch commands


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 @ 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.

%1

The percent followed by a numeric value, beginning with one, allows users to add variables within a batch file. 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.

:LABEL

By 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.

CALL

This 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.

CLS

Clear Screen

ECHO

Will echo a message in the batch file.

ECHO “Hello World" will print Hello World on the screen when executed.
Note if you have not typed @ECHO OFF at the beginning of the file this will also print

"ECHO Hello World" and

"Hello World".
If you would just like to create a blank line, type

ECHO. (adding the full stop creates an empty line.)


EXIT

Exits out of the DOS window if the batch file is running from Windows.

GOTO LABEL

Used 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. .

IF

Used to check for a certain condition if the condition exists. If that condition exists it will perform that function.

PAUSE

Prompt the user to press any key to continue.

REM

Allows you to place comments into the batch file without displaying or executing that line when the batch file is run.

SHIFT

Changes the position of replaceable parameters in a batch program. .



Exercise 6 - Wildcards Example


Write a batch program called EX6.BAT

Your batch file should do the following:



  • Clear the screen

  • Add a line to change directory to the C:\Windows directory

  • Add a line to list all files with an extension of TXT in that directory. (Make sure you put some text files in here if there are none already).


Exercise 7 – Copy from one drive to another

You will be using the C drive and a different partition on the drive in this batch file. My example uses partition E. Create another partition on your Vmware computer if you have not already done so.

Write a batch program called EX7.BAT. It should carry out the following tasks:




  • Copy all files with an extension of ps1 from Drive C to Drive E. (Use either the copy command or the xcopy command. The xcopy command is the better one to use here.) For example files like profile.ps1 or types .ps1




  • Before the files are copied across use the echo command to tell the user you are doing so.

Run the batch program.


Modifications

Add the pause command to your batch file. This line should be inserted before the copy is carried out. What effect does this have on the program?




Exercise 8 – Creating a Directory structure


Write a batch program called EX8.BAT that creates the following directory structure on drive C. You have already created all folders except the folder called Op Sys. You should not create the files.


C:\




ACCOUNTS

COLLEGE

Letters

Email

Java

Apps






Sample.txt


Example.txt

Op Sys



report.doc


Check either in Explorer or at the prompt that the directory structure shown above has been created.

Create the three files shown in the diagram above using the …………………. command.


Exercise 9 – Copying and moving files


Take it that you will be in the DOS prompt at the root directory of Drive C when you run the batch file.
Write a batch program called EX9.BAT that will

a. Change directory to the Accounts folder.


b. There are two files Example.txt and Sample.txt in the directory Accounts. Write the DOS command(s) to copy the two files to the directory called Java.
c. Delete the file Example.txt from the Accounts folder. Prompt the user to confirm before deleting the file.
d. Write the DOS command to move the file Report.doc to the folder Apps and call it a different name ReportOld.doc.

Exercise 10 – Removing directories


Write a batch program called EX10.BAT that removes the Accounts directory and all its subdirectories in the above structure.
Check that it successfully removes all the directories shown above.

Exercise 11 – Using the ECHO COMMAND


Write a batch program called EX11.BAT that produces the following output to the screen.
No snowflake feels guilty in an avalanche.
Not everything that is important can be measured.
Not everything that can be measured is important.

Ensure the screen is cleared and that there is a blank line under each line of output.


ECHO OFF (turns echoing of commands off).

ECHO. (prints a blank line to the screen).

CLS (clears the screen).


Exercise 12 – Using the call command


Write a batch program called EX12a.BAT that contains the following statements:

cd..

dir

Save this program.

What will be the effect of these commands?.........................................................................
Create another program called Ex12.bat which will

a) Change to the Apps folder

b) Calls program Ex12a.bat

c) Echo your name to the screen


What will be the effect of this program?.........................................................................
Did it execute the DOS commands in both batch files? .................................................
What directory are you in now ? ................... How did you get there?.......................
.....................................................................................................................................

Using replaceable parameters

Exercise 13 – Replaceable parameters


Programs can accept replaceable parameters at the prompt. (The replaceable parameters are %1 through to %9).

Write a batch file called Ex13.Bat which accepts one parameter; the parameter is a persons name. The program will then display the word “Hello” followed by the person’s name.


For example you should be able to run the program as follows from the DOS prompt:

EX13 David
What will be the effect of this command?.........................................................................

Exercise 14 – Replaceable parameters


Create a batch file called Ex14.bat that accepts one parameter; a directory name. The program will then create that directory on the C: drive and change into it.
Exercise 14a Add error checking. Check whether the user has supplied the parameter. It should print an error message, if it has not been supplied.

@echo off

If "%1" == "" GOTO No-Directory

Echo.


Echo Directory Specified

Echo.


GOTO End

:No-Directory

Echo.

Echo No Directory Specified



Echo.

:End
Use this with your code from Exercise 14. If parameter is specified, it will create a directory with that name.



Exercise 15 – Replaceable parameters


Create a batch file called Ex15.bat that accepts two parameters, which represents 2 directory names. The program will create a directory represented by the first parameter on the C: drive. It will then create a subdirectory within this directory, whose name is represented by the second parameter.

For example you should be able to run the program as follows from the DOS prompt:


EX15 Reports IBM

What will be the effect of this command?.........................................................................


Adding error checking to Exercise 15.

What error checks will you include? .........................................................................



Exercise 16 – Replaceable parameters


Write a batch program called Ex16.Bat that accepts two parameters – first is the directory name and the second is a file name:

    • Creates a directory with the same name as the first parameter at the root of the C drive.

    • Copies a file with the same name as the second parameter to this folder.


Note: You must create the file first on the C: Drive.
For example you should be able to run the program as follows from the DOS prompt:
EX16 IBM report.txt

Further modify this program to perform error checks.

What error checks will be included? .........................................................................


PATH in MS-DOS


Specifies directories where executable programs are located. Path specifies the search path.

Use the PATH command to tell MS-DOS which directories to look into when an executable file is not in the current directory. When you enter a line of text at the MS-DOS prompt that is neither a recognized command nor an executable filename in the current directory, MS-DOS will search through the directories in your PATH for a filename that matches the text you entered. Many packages, such as Microsoft Word, automatically add or modify the PATH line during the installation process. Each path cannot exceed 127 characters, and may be further limited by your MS-DOS environment space.
See more information at: http://www.lagmonster.org/docs/DOS7/z-path.html
There are two ways to add a directory to the path in Windows 7


  1. At the Command line (MS DOS)

At the MS-DOS prompt type: path

An example of what could be shown:


BE CAREFUL when you attempt to change the path that you do it correctly.
How to add a directory to the system path:

PATH=%PATH%;C:\BLASTER


%PATH% represents the existing path. This example would add C:\BLASTER to the path.


  1. Through the GUI in Windows 7

The path is managed in Windows 7 as Environment variables.


In the System Properties, Advanced tab; click the Environment Variables button. 

Highlight the Path variable in the Systems Variable section(lower section) and click Edit. Each different directory is separated with a semicolon as shown below. You can add or modify the path lines with the paths you wish the computer to access.

C:\Program Files;C:\Windows;C:\Windows\System32
What is the path that you see? ....................................................................................................


WARNING:



Be careful when changing the paths on the computer system

Exercise 17 – Paths


  • Add the directory to the path to allow your batch files to be run from any directory at the command prompt.

  • Change to a different directory to the one which contains your batch files.

  • Now try to run the batch file.

Were you able to run the batch file from a different directory to the one the batch file is stored in? .........................................




Revision Questions: Taken from past exam papers

Q1. Create a batch file program called Q1.bat that

a. Clears the screen
b. lists all files from C:\Users directory and its subdirectories on the C: drive which match the following criteria:

Files whose filename starts with ‘s’ and the extension of the file starts with the letter ‘l’ and is 3 letters long. For example: setupact.log, setuperr.log


c. Copy the file setupact.log to c:\accounts
d. The batchfile should also have a comment line which contains your name on the top of the program.

Q2. Write a batch file called Q2.bat that reads in a directory name and creates that directory on the C:\ drive. If no directory name is specified an error message is displayed to the user indicating so.

Q3. Write a batch program called Q3.bat that accepts one parameter which contains the name of a directory.

a. then create a directory in the letters folder which has the same name as the parameter supplied.


b. Write the DOS command to copy the file setupact.log from the c:\accounts directory to this new directory and give the file a new name called setupact.tmp

Q4. a. What is the purpose of the Path command?



……………………………………………………………………………………………………….
……………………………………………………………………………………………………….
b. Write the DOS command to add the path to your batch files to the existing path.
……………………………………………………………………………………………………….





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