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Windows GUI Replacement for DOS Batch Programming

Posted on 2007-11-26
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hi All,
I've been using basic, intermediate and occasionally advanced DOS Batch programming for the last 20 odd years on and off for the odd nasty little fix or job... I was a big fan of Norton DOS 8 in the day, but the last 5 to 10 years I've been thinking there must be either:
1) A nice GUI to string it all together and show the user nice lil prompt boxes OR
2) A successor scripting or programming language that is relatively native to Windows

Is there any such thing(s)? I primarily want all the quick n nasties to look a little pretier (especially when requesting user input) and hopefully be slightly less nasty/crude (And I know about starting (shortcut) windows minimised and CMDOW).

Thanks!
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Question by:jasef
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6 Comments
 
LVL 96

Assisted Solution

by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 600 total points
ID: 20355247
There are several different scripting languages available to Windows. Batch programming, as you're familiar with.  There's also PowerShell (which is compatible with batch programs but also significantly enhanced), Windows Scripting Host, and several third party and/or older apps like Kix.  Personally, I still use batch myself.
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LVL 3

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by:jasef
ID: 20355460
Thanks for your prompt reply...

Is there anything that is likely to be running on every XP/Vista machine be default? I have briefly looked at WSH years ago, but thought this didn't end up being very successful 'in the field', plus manuals and guides where a fair abortion at that time.

The key component here is something that is more interactive with a typical Windows GUI for end user purposes (IE: No DOS Box)... This eliminates KIX I believe? Powershell I've never heard of, but will peak at now.



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LVL 29

Accepted Solution

by:
matrixnz earned 800 total points
ID: 20355507
Hi jasef

Highly recommend AutoIT http://www.autoitscript.com it's easy to use, compiles to exe, you can create your own gui interface etc..

The other product I highly recommend for either simple installations, or packaging a product/program even dos commands  is Inno Setup http://www.jrsoftware.org

I tend to use a combination of both programs, Inno Setup primarily for wrapping other installers as you can provide conditional installations for e.g. if file version is xyz then don't install etc...  AutoIT can be used to do almost anything both products have good forums and excellent help/examples.

Hope that helps.

Cheers
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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:jasef
ID: 20363871
Hi Gents(?),
Thanks muchly for your suggestions. I think between the options you have both presented I'll have some excellent alternatives! If over the next few days, no one has any other options they think beat the current suggestions to a pulp, I'll award points as a split.

Cheers!
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LVL 14

Assisted Solution

by:canali
canali earned 600 total points
ID: 20368896
Python http://www.python.org/
or
ironPython http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=F9296971-F926-4BE5-9870-F6EE3B1977A3&displaylang=en
perl
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/scripts/perl/default.mspx?mfr=true
 http://www.activestate.com/Products/activeperl/
and thre are many more (rexx,kixforms,jscript...)
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/scripts/perl/default.mspx?mfr=true

But old plain batch always run! For PowerShell and ironpython you need .Net framework  2.0 at less , for python and perl you need to copy or install it... I prefer to use standard solution, without adding other sw and batch is right.
Gas

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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:jasef
ID: 20385529
Hi Everyone,
Thanks for your responses. MatrixNZ's suggestions seem most attractive at this stage, so I'll probably focus on those packages first. PowerShell looks like it will be great once it is included in the next generation of MS OS and includes full functionality. Have a great weekend & I appreciate the help!

R's,
Jason
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