Computer Science

What is Command Prompt?

A command prompt is a native Windows application that is used in a text-based or command-line interface such as a DOS shell or Unix terminal. It is a symbol of characters at the start of a line that indicates the system is ready to receive input. It simple words, cmd.exe prompts the user for a command. It is often preceded by the current directory of the system that the user is working with.

The user can write commands at the command prompt, such as cd / that means change directory to the root folder. The command cd enables the user to browse through the different directories of files on a hard disk or the network. There is a massive range of other commands are available that a user can type and can be to list, delete, move and copy files, run programs, or perform other variety of operations. While the cd code is the same in both Unix and DOS but many other commands have different syntax.

Since the command prompt (cmd.exe) requires specific input, basically it is useless if you don’t know the code of the command. Hence, the knowledge of some basic commands is required to use a command-line interface. Most of the operating systems (OSs) now use a graphical user interface (GUI) as their main way of requesting input from the user that means you do not need to learn any commands in order to use the computer. However, learning to use a command-line interface is a type of like learning to drive a car with the manual broadcast.

Martin Adler

Martin Adler is a Computer Engineer and an accomplished writer with a passion for inspiring everyone with exciting technologies. He loves to explore technical terms and try to deliver something worth reading.