Microsoft DOS path command

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About path
Additional Information

About path

Path is used to specify the location where MS-DOS looks when using a command. For example, when using the command "format", if the path is not specified to where the command is you will receive bad command or file name.


The path command is an internal command that is available in the below Microsoft operating systems.

All Versions of MS-DOS
Windows 95
Windows 98
Windows ME
Windows NT
Windows 2000
Windows XP
Windows Vista
Windows 7


Displays or sets a search path for executable files.

PATH [[drive:]path[;...]]

Type PATH ; to clear all search-path settings and direct Windows to search
only in the current directory.
Type PATH without parameters to display the current path.



This is where a lot of DOS commands are stored in Window 95; if you are not able to do a dos command, type this command in, allowing all commands you type in, such as "deltree", to be loaded from this directory. However, if you have another file in another directory such as C:\DOS it will no longer look there.

Additional information

DOS limits the path to 122 bytes. Every command is limited to 127 bytes; however, 127 - 5 (minus 5 because of PATH=) = 122.

Microsoft Windows 2000 and Windows XP users must set or modify their path statement through the environment variables, additional information on how to do this can be found on document CH000549.