Friday, April 25, 2008

Redirecting The Ouput of a Command to the Clipboard

I very often use the command line to list file names using the dir command (for web design and other purposes). I usually need to have those file names in notepad. One way to do that is to redirect the command ouput to a file (copy the text from the file then delete it) or mark the text in the command line window and press Enter to copy it to the clipboard. A nicer and cleaner way though is to redirect the output of the command to the clipboard. Unfortunately there's no built-in way for doing this in Windows XP, however, it can be added very easily. In Windows 2003 we have a file called clip.exe (under the Windows or system32 directory, not sure, so search for it), which we can use to redirect the output of any command to the clipboard, but first if you're using Windows XP, copy this file to the Windows or System32 directory on your computer (obviously you'll need a computer with Windows 2003 to get this file, you might as well try seraching the internet, it's most probably there).

Now to redirect the output of your command to the clipboad, just use a pipe with clip, for example:

dir /b | clip

* If you're wondering what the /b switch does, it displays the bare file names (only the file names with no headers or any other information)

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