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Chapter 19. Using Windows Home Server’s ... > Understanding Batch File Basics

Understanding Batch File Basics

As you’ve seen so far, the command line is still an often-useful and occasionally indispensable part of computing life, and most power users will find themselves doing at least a little work in the Command Prompt window. Part of that work might involve writing short batch file programs to automate routine chores, such as performing simple file backups and deleting unneeded files. And if you throw in any of the commands that enhance batch files, you can do many other interesting and useful things.

When you run a command in a command-line session, the command prompt executes the command or program and returns to the prompt to await further orders. If you tell the command prompt to execute a batch file, however, things are a little different. The command prompt goes into Batch mode, where it takes all its input from the individual lines of a batch file. These lines are just commands that (in most cases) you otherwise have to type in yourself. The command prompt repeats the following four-step procedure until it has processed each line in the batch file:


  

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