B.EXE dir command

Release date: 
Saturday, 26 November, 1994



Authors/Port authors:

B.EXE dir command is a 32 bit OS/2 DIR replacement 32 bit command line program. Replaces OS/2's DIR command. Supports file highlighting by extensions, recursive directory searches, changing of file order. Can change what information is shown. Fully configurable by using switches and environment variable.

This software is distributed as compressed package. You have to download and manually install it; if prerequisites are required, you will have to manually install them too.

Manual installation

Program is distributed as ZIP package: download to temporary directory and unpack to destination folder. See below for download link(s).

Following ones are the download links for manual installation:

B.EXE dir command v. 1.32 (31/10/1996, Dohn Arms) Readme/What's new
B.EXE directory lister for OS/2 and DOS Version 1.32 October, 1996 Dohn Arms Copyright 1996 Dohn Arms Permission to use, copy and distribute this software and its documentation for any purpose and without charging more than a nominal fee for copying is hereby granted, provided that the above copyright notice appear in all copies and that both that copyright notice and this permission notice appear in supporting documentation. This software is provided "as is" without express or implied warranty. This program is "freeware" which means that you do not have to pay for it. It is not public domain, which means that I own the program and no one is allowed to alter the program before redistributing it, which includes running B_EDIT on B. The only thing that I ask of anybody that actually uses my program is that if they have access to E-mail, that they send me a message telling me if my program is particularly useful or not. I just want to see that people actually use this. My E-mail address is: dohnarms@uiuc.edu . What is this program? This is a command line program that is to be used to view the contents of a directory. This program is designed to be an alternative for DIR. It has also has almost all of the functionality of DIR. The reason I wrote the program was because I disliked DIR and I wanted an easy way to view the information contained in a directory. Like DIR, you can also set default switches in an environment variable. What's with the name? The name was simply a convenience for me due to the fact that I like one letter names for programs that I use a lot. I already had programs named C, D, and E, so I named it B. If you don't like this (which I would probably think true), rename it to whatever you like. The program is written with renaming it in mind. The help text (seen with /? switch) will reflect the new name, as will the environment variable. The only condition is that you must keep the .EXE extension in the new name (there are ways to run EXE programs after dropping the .EXE extensions). So change B.EXE to BDIR.EXE if you like, and look at the help screen. The environment variable would then be BDIR, also. (I was in Germany for research, and I was using a DOS PC to do some programming. I found a program named D. Figuring it would be a program similar to mine, I ran it. It was my B, renamed to D! Talk about weird! I never expected to run into my program in another country!) What's with all these switches? I love switches, thus this program relies heavily on switches. Hopefully you know how to use them, although I tried to make B useful even if you don't change any of the settings. Because of this, if you never use a switch, you don't get to see half of what B can do. PLEASE PLAY WITH THE SWITCHES! Some of the switches are of the type that you might use every once in a while from the command line (like the one that goes and sums the sizes of the subdirectories for you), while there are others that are useful only in the environment variable or a CMD file as they are very long and not likely to be changed (like the switch to change the colors of everything in the program). Why is there no configuration file? As this is a replacement for DIR, probably the most used command line "program", I wanted to keep it fast, as I don't like to wait just to see the file listing. This is why there is no configuration file, as file IO is too slow. To set default settings, you must set the environment variable, something that is not very hard and an important thing to know how to do, or you can use a CMD file with the switches in it. There is also an accompanying program, B_EDIT, which will allow one to alter the executable file to change the default settings of the program instead of the variable or command files. There is a seperate document, B_EDIT.TXT, which describes B_EDIT. Description: When run with no switches, you will see all the files and subdirectories in a directory. The uppercase brown names are the subdirectories. The gray names are files that do not have an extension that is being searched for. Anything of another color is a file of a searched-for extension; the colors are yellow, light green, red, cyan, light cyan, and dark green (these are the official names for these colors). By default, the extensions for OS/2 are EXE, COM, CMD, INF, TXT, and ZIP. For DOS, they are EXE, COM, BAT, DOC, TXT, and ZIP. If there is an asterisk next to a subdirectory or a file, that means that the file or subdirectory is hidden (from normal view, anyway) or is a system file or both. If the name of a file is uppercase, that means the file is either read-only or is a system file or both (if the file is composed of characters with no cases (such as numbers), you won't be able to tell). Under the listing of files and subdirectories, the directory being shown is displayed. Under that is the total number of files shown, with the total size of the files (I haven't fixed B to add EA's yet). Also, to the side of this is the total number of subdirectories shown. If all the files can't fit onto the screen, the scrolling stops when the maximum number per screen has scrolled by. If you don't want to see any more of the files, you can stop the scrolling by merely pressing the Escape key ("Esc"), pressing Ctrl-C (the "C" key while the "Ctrl" key is pressed), or pressing Ctrl-Break (the "Pause" key while the "Ctrl" key is pressed). All the files that were visible remain visible on the screen. In the wide view (/W), you will only see file names. In the default normal view (/N), there will be a size in bytes next to each file, and a "<DIR>" next to each subdirectory. In the date-time view (/D), there will also be the time and date of the last write of each file and directory. If you are using one of the previous views and if a file or subdirectory name is longer than 13 characters, in the OS/2 version of B, there will be a ">>" character at the end showing that the file name has been cut off. In the long view (/L), the complete file name is shown, along with file attributes the and time up to a two-second interval. Using the sort switch (/O), you can change how the files and directories are sorted. You can choose to not sort (/OU). There is the default sort by name (/ON), sort by extension (/OE), sort by size (/OS), and sort by time (/OT). Using the last three switches, if files have the same extension, size, or time, they will be sub-sorted according to name. You can specify a reverse sort for any of them (except /OU) by adding a negative sign before the second letter (such as /O-N for a reverse name sort). There is a switch that allows the directories to be grouped apart from the files (/G). It is on by default, but can be turned off with /-G. If you wish to see only files, using the file-only switch (/JF) will remove all subdirectories. If you wish to just see the subdirectories, using the subdirectory-only switch (/JD) will show only subdirectories. To see both files and directories, the default, use the all switch (/JA). If you wished to see the free space on the disk where the directory viewed is, use the free-space switch (/F) and the information will appear at the bottom, along with the total space on the disk and the volume label. If you want to see what the extensions being highlighted actually are, use the extension viewing switch (/E), and they will appear in their respective colors at the bottom of the screen. If you want to see the total sizes of subdirectory trees and the total size of the current directory tree, using the size summing switch (/Z) will have the "<DIR>" next to each subdirectory replaced with its size in kilobytes (1 K = 1024 bytes). Also, at the bottom, the total directory size will be displayed. If you were using the name-only mode (/W), it will automatically be kicked up to the name and size only mode (/N), as you would probably want to see the sizes. If you wish to do a recursive search through subdirectories, there is the recursive switch (/S). From the directory that is specified, and the file mask also specified, all the files matching the mask in the specified directory and any subdirectories in this directory will be shown. For every directory, if any files are found, the files will be shown, with the directory being shown under it. As this switch is almost a separate program, a find utility, many switches don't work with it: these are /F, /E, /P, and /I. If the size summing switch (/Z) is used with it, it will show the total size of the files in each directory, and will also sum the size of all the files found at the end. There is a switch for putting the path and mask after the files and directories are shown (/P). This is on by default, but this switch effectively lets you turn it off with /-P. There is a switch that shows the number of files and directories, and the total size of all the files in the directory (/I). This is on by default, but can be turned off with /-I. For cosmetic purposes, if the number of files and directories is equal or below a certain number, they will be shown in one column. This number is 4 by default. If the number of entries is from 5 through 8, they will be shown in two columns if possible, etc. There is a switch to change this number (/H). You can use a number from 1 to 9, and just set it right after the /H. For example, to set this number to 3, use /H3. If you don't want to see any of the extraneous information after the files and directories are shown, and if you want what is shown as compact as possible, use the bare switch (/B). Effectively, this fits the most on the screen for you if you need to conserve space. This is not actually a true' switch, as it really just is shorthand for /-F /-E /-P /-I /-Z /H1 which means it turns off a bunch of other switches. Because it is not a true' switch, it can't be reversed. If you want to redirect the output of B say to a file or printer, the output has to be in the form of a colorless TTY mode. To force this mode, there is a switch (/T). The output will not be in colors, does not pause, and there are no breaks. [NOTE: If you don't know what I am talking about, to save the output of B to a file, use the following: "B (switches) /T > (filename)". The >' redirects the output into a file with name filename'. To redirect the output to the printer, use the following: "B (switches) /T > PRN".] Most people will probably want to change the default extensions to suit their needs. The extension changing switch (/C) will allow this. You can supply a list of up to sixteen extensions, each having up to three letters. To do this, simply space out each extension after the /C switch. For example, the default OS/2 extensions would be added like this: /C COM EXE CMD INF TXT ZIP The DOS extensions I use are: /C COM EXE BAT DOC TXT ZIP C CPP H HPP GIF JPG DAT ASM TEX The default colors taken by the extensions are all different. You can change all 16 colors, with some being repetitive if you want, with the color switch (/A). Some people might want to change the default colors. To do this, there is a switch to alter the color scheme (/A), which you may find cryptic. You can specify colors for any of the 15 text types: 1) the color of any information text seen, 2) the color of the subdirectories, 3) the color of the unhighlighted files, 4) the color of extension one, ... , and 15) the color of extension twelve. These allowable colors and their numeric equivalents are shown in the table below. The complete way to set this switch is to put after the /A the first foreground color, then a comma (you can't change the background color of the information text), then the second foreground color, then a colon, then the second background color, then a comma, then the third foreground color, then a colon, ... , then the fifteenth foreground color, then a colon, and then the fifteenth background color. For a full example of this (this can be abbreviated, as explained later): /A5,11:4,10:2,4:7,2:6,5:0,0:7,13:3,9:3,14:1,3:6,1:4,15:3,11:4,1:6,8:3,7:0,12:3,2:6 You do not have to specify every color for every text type, but can skip some, as their colors will remain the same as before the /A switch. You can skip either the foreground color or the background color or both for a text type. To skip both, just put nothing in between the commas. To skip the foreground color, just don't put a color number between the comma and the colon. To skip the background color, don't put either the colon or the background color. You don't even need to specify all 15 colors, but can just specify the first, for example, 10 colors. For example: /A,4,1,4:7,,,14,10:3,,:5 You only need to specify what you want to change. If you want to only use your normal background color (probably black), just don't even touch the background colors: /A5,11,10,4,2,5,0,13,9,14,3,1,15,11,1,8,7,12,2 [NOTE: you can't change the background color of the first /A color, although it won't give you an error if you try.] COLORS: you may choose from 0 - 15 for foreground, 0 - 7 for background 0 = black 1 = blue 2 = green 3 = cyan 4 = red 5 = magenta 6 = brown 7 = light gray 8 = dark gray 9 = light blue 10 = light green 11 = light cyan 12 = light red 13 = light magenta 14 = yellow 15 = white To see the actual colors on the screen, use the /? switch, as it shows them all. B will add implicit wildcards, like MS-DOS. If you use "B CAT", it will expand it to "B CAT.*". If you use "B .ZIP", it will expand it to "B *.ZIP". For DOS, if you use "B CR*", it will be expanded to "B CR*.*". If switches are already set, and you don't want them set, you can always turn them off. For most switches, simply add a negative sign before the switch letter; for example, to turn off /F, one would use /-F. You do not have to put spaces between the switches. Only one switch does not conform to this, being /C, which explicitly needs spaces in the first place. (This is a legacy thing since /C was the first switch I implemented, and I am thinking of changing it to use commas in between.) If you like a certain set of switches to be used by default, you can put them into the environment variable. To do this, the command looks like: SET B=(switches) You can do this from the command line, or you can put it in your CONFIG.SYS (for OS/2) or AUTOEXEC.BAT (for DOS). An example would look like: SET B=/F /O-D /A,4 /C C ZIP EXE CMD H [NOTE: If you changed the name of B to something else, the environment variable will also be changed from B. If you renamed B.EXE to BDIR.EXE, the variable would be BDIR.] A different way which is slower, but easier, is to create a command file (for OS/2) or a batch file (for DOS). All you would have to do is create the file with the correct extension, CMD for a command file or BAT for a batch file. The only line needed would look like: (path)B.EXE (command line switches) %1 %2 %3 %4 %5 %6 A sample CMD file, say BB.CMD, could look like: E:\TOOLS\B.EXE /D /F /-P /C EXE COM CMD C CPP H HPP %1 %2 %3 %4 %5 %6 [NOTE: If you don't know this, you need to include the %1, %2, etc. because these allow you to pass arguments to the CMD or BAT file. Also, I wouldn't name your CMD or BAT file the same as what you name B, if B is in your path, as an EXE takes precedence over a CMD or BAT file; i.e. don't name your file B.CMD if you leave B as B.EXE and it is in your path.] Once you make your file, make sure you put it in the path. The last way is to use the B_EDIT program, which has the document B_EDIT.TXT to explain how to use it. You need the same switch information as above for B_EDIT, as it uses the same switches. If you want to know what switches are on by default, using the help screen (/?) will show you the switches on, except for /A and /C which would take up too much room. Form of Command: B.EXE [path][wildcard] [/?] [/W|/N|/D|/L] [/J<F|D|A>] [/O[-]<N|S|E|D|U>] [/B] [/[-]S] [/[-]Z] [/[-]T] [/[-]F] [/[-]E] [/[-]P] [/[-]I] [/[-]G] [/H(1-9)] [/C [ext 1] ... [ext 16]] [/A[f1],[f2][:b2],...,[f19][:b19]] /? The help screen /W Wide view (uses five columns with only file names) /N Normal view (uses three columns and adds file sizes) /D Detail view (uses two columns and adds dates and times) /L Long view (uses one column and adds long names and attributes) /J% Just show files, directories, or both. /JF Shows just files /JD Shows just directories /JA Shows both files and directories /O[-]% Changes sort order, '-' before % does reverse sort /ON Does alphabetical sort of the names /OS Does numerical sort of the sizes /OE Does alphabetical sort of the extensions /OD Does chronological sort of the times and dates /OU Does not sort at all /[-]B Shows only bare format of just directory and file names /[-]S Does a recursive search through subdirectories using mask /[-]Z Sums the sizes in each subdirectory tree and in current directory tree /[-]T Outputs the information in TTY mode for redirection /[-]F Shows the free space on the disk where you are viewing the directory /[-]E Shows the extensions used for highlighting in their highlighting colors /[-]P Shows the path and mask for the directory being viewed /[-]I Shows the number of files and directories and total size of the files /[-]G Groups the directories apart from the files /H% Sets the minimum column height before starting new column to % /C [extension 1] [extension 2] ... [extension 15] [extension 16] Changes highlighting extensions to those specified /A[fc1],[fc2][:bc2],[fc3][:bc3],...,[fc18][:bc18],[fc19][:bc19] Changes the color scheme: bc = background color and fc = foreground color Text order is: information, directories, unhighlighted files, extension 1, ..., extension 12 The colors are: 0 = black 1 = blue 2 = green 3 = cyan 4 = red 5 = magenta 6 = brown 7 = light gray 8 = dark gray 9 = light blue 10 = light green 11 = light cyan 12 = light red 13 = light magenta 14 = yellow 15 = white To set default switches: "SET B=(command line arguments)" Contacting the Author: If you have any comments or questions about my program, feel free to E-mail me or write me. If you find bugs, please tell me. I actually want to hear from you if you actually use this, so I know my work in putting this on the Internet has not been in vain. I hope you find this useful. E-Mail: dohnarms@uiuc.edu Mail: Dohn Arms Loomis Laboratory of Physics 1110 West Green Street Urbana, IL 61801-3080 ------------------------------------------------- Version 1.32 all done around October, 1996 I had a complaint a long time ago about ending up in the wrong directory if you break out of the program during a puase by using a CTRL-C or CTRL-Break. Well, my program used to actually change the directory as it worked, but now it doesn't. It was trading one set of problems for another, but it seems to make the /S switch faster now. I enabled the CTRL-C to work exactly as ESC now, for both DOS and OS/2. I added a new program, B_EDIT.EXE, which will allow you to actually burn your preferred switches into B. This way you don't have to mess with the B environment variable or creating batch and command files. Essentially, one uses the same switches with this new program. However, the environment variable still works as normal. I hacked on the sorting routine to streamline it some, and make the sorting faster. There is no other noticeable difference to the user because of this.
 hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/util/file/B_dir_1-32.ZIP  local copy
Record updated last time on: 22/08/2023 - 21:10

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