DOS Tips

Convenience With DOSKey

From the dark olden days of DOS, lives another famous utility which is still not so forgotten. This utility is still used by most Windows power-users for a better living on DOS or DOS Prompt. Yes, it is the good old DOSKey utility. Although this is actually quite a powerful utility, we will only cover the basics. We will be creating a full tutorial on it. First, to install DOSKey. On the DOS Prompt, type :


You should see :

DOSKey installed

If you should see this message, you are now in business. OK, now what's the main use of DOSKey? DOSKey is used for faster editing at your command prompt. For example, you can now use the Insert key on your keyboard and make the DOS prompt act like your usual word processor - any new text you typed is inserted and old text is pushed to the right.

Now, most of your key will work like any normal text editing keys on DOS prompt. Below are the list of DOSKey enabled keys and their use.

Editing Keys Use Of Key
Home Moves to the start of the command line
End Moves to the end of the command line
Right Arrow Moves forward one character
Left Arrow Moves backward one character
Ctrl+Right Arrow Moves forward one word
Ctrl+Left Arrow Moves backward one word
Ctrl+End Deletes from the cursorto the end of the line
Insert Switches between insert and overtype mode

Also, with DOSkey installed, you can go through the command history. Really useful if you find yourself keep typing the same commands again and again. You will find that you can actually use the Up and Down-arrow keys to flip through the commands you typed. Type an extra long command with a few characters, press F8 and let DOSKey scan through the command history and complete the command automatically for you like the auto complete feature in explorer. Press Alt+F7 to clean the command history. The list of DOSKey enabled command history keys are:

Command History Keys Use Of Key
Up Arrow Recalls preceding command form command history
Down Arrow Recalls next command from the command history
Page Up Recalls the first (oldest) command in the history
Page Down Recalls the most last (recent) DOS command
F7 Displays a numbered command history list
Alt+F7 Erases the command history
F8 Search the command history to complete commands with matching characters

With such convenience, you might be wondering if you are actually using DOS.

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Dos Tips 5

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