Introducing the Command Prompt

The Windows command prompt is not what many people think it is. It is not DOS running on top of Windows. In Windows 3.1, it was indeed the same COMMAND.COM that provided the interface at the DOS command prompt; however, Windows NT changed the way you interact with the command-prompt interface by providing CMD.EXE as an alternative to COMMAND.COM. The CMD.EXE shell interface has several advantages over COMMAND.COM, including:

  • CMD.EXE runs as a true 32-bit interface to the Windows NT through Windows Server 2008 R2 operating systems. COMMAND.COM is still there, but it should never be used unless you must support a very old 16-bit DOS application that requires it.
  • You have full support for long file names. COMMAND.COM ...

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