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Setting DOS variable to contents of text file

How can I set a DOS variable, in a W2k3 batch file, to the contents of a text file.  File may have over 5000 characters?

I can get 1st line in from set /p switch, and I figure I can put this into a FOR loop and append each line possibly.  But I'm hoping there is a PIPE or redirection or some really slick way to do this.

My goal is to try to NOT use an SQL stored procedure that has this query and to instead use the SQL string from the text file to input as my QUERYOUT string.
Windows BatchMicrosoft DOS

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8/22/2022 - Mon