ColonA symbol that looks like two periods above each other ( : ) that is found on the same key as the semicolon on standard United States keyboards.

How is a colon used?

Below are some different examples of where a colon is used today.

  1. In a URL, a colon separates the protocol with the address. For example, with http is the protocol and is the address.
  2. In MS-DOS and the Windows command line, a colon indicates a drive letter. For example, typing in "A:" at the MS-DOS prompt would switch to the A drive or floppy disk drive.
  3. In a spreadsheet formula, a colon specifies a range. For example, =sum(A1:A20) would add cells A1 through A20.
  4. A colon in front or end of a word (depending on programming language) creates a label that can be used with a goto.
  5. In a batch file adding two comments in front of a line creates a remarked line.

Related pages

Also see: Keyboard terms, Semicolon