Automatically Executed Batch File

What Does Automatically Executed Batch File Mean?

The automatically executed batch file, abbreviated with the
file name autoexec.bat, is a system file on older DOS operating systems that
provides a list of boot commands. Autoexec.bat provides an alternative to
manually inputting each boot command as the computer starts up. The automatically executed batch file was often included in Windows designs around the turn of
the millennium as a plain text batch file located in the root directory.


Techopedia Explains Automatically Executed Batch File

DOS-based systems would read the automatically executed batch file to collect different types of commands for booting up the computer. For example, autoexec.bat might provide initiation for device drivers, or provide helpful commands for using virus scanners or other tools.

In the early systems where autoexec.bat was utilized, it often showed up in top-level user windows in the operating system. That meant that many users who are unfamiliar with boot execution would see the file and at least have a passing interest in what was inside it. By contrast, similar files are now mostly hidden in today’s operating systems, and users are free to ignore them.


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Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…