Display messages on screen, turn command-echoing on or off.
ECHO [ON | OFF]
ON : Display each line of the batch on screen (default)
OFF : Only display the command output on screen
message : a string of characters to display
Type ECHO without parameters to display the current echo setting (ON or OFF). In most batch files you will want ECHO OFF, turning it ON can be useful when debugging a problematic batch script.
In a batch file, the @ symbol is the same as ECHO OFF applied to the current line only.
Normally a command is executed and takes effect from the next line onwards, @ is a rare example of a command that takes effect immediately.
Command characters will normally take precedence over the ECHO statement, e.g. The redirection and pipe characters: & < > | ON OFF .
To override this behaviour you can escape each command character with ^ as follows:
ECHO Nice ^&Easy
ECHO Salary is ^> Commision
ECHO Name ^| Username ^| Expiry Date
ECHO:Off On Holiday
Echo a Variable
To display a department variable:
If the variable does not exist - ECHO will simply return the text "%v_department%"
This can be extended to search and replace parts of a variable or display substrings of a variable. You can also redirect the echoed output from the screen into a file.
Echo a file
see the TYPE command for this
Echo a sound
The following command in a batch file will trigger the default beep on most PC's
Use Ctrl-G (or 'Alt' key, and 7 on the numeric keypad) to get this character (ascii 7)
Alternatively where a sound card is available:
START/min sndrec32 /play /close %windir%mediading.wav
START/min mplay32 /play /close %windir%mediading.wav
Echo a blank line
The following command in a batch file will produce an empty line
Echo text into a stream
Streams allow one file to contain several separate forks of information (like the macintosh resource fork)
The general syntax is
Echo Text_String > FileName:StreamName
Only the following commands support the File:Stream syntax - ECHO, MORE, FOR
Echo This is stream1 > myfile.dat:stream1
Echo This is stream2 > myfile.dat:stream2
More < myfile.dat:stream1
More < myfile.dat:stream2
FOR /f "delims=*" %%G in (myfile.dat:stream1) DO echo %%G
FOR /f "delims=*" %%G in (myfile.dat:stream2) DO echo %%G
A data stream file can be successfully copied and renamed despite the fact that most applications and commands will report a zero length file. The file size can be calculated from remaining free space. The file must always reside on an NTFS volume.
About the Author
FortyPoundHead has posted a total of 1974 articles.
Comments On This Post
No comments on this post yet!
Do you have a thought relating to this post? You can post your comment here. If you have an unrelated question, you can use the Q&A section to ask it.
Or you can drop a note to the administrators if you're not sure where you should post.