Change drive letters or directories in the dos command (cmd) window

Writing commands into a dos command window is not a secret, because before Windows was invented, you needed to be able to navigate around the computer somehow and therefore we had to learn how to change drive letters. When I say change drive letters, I mean in a Dos window, not change drive letters of a hard drive, volume, or partition.

Windows can now help you get from one folder or directory to the next or even simple right click and copy folders to other locations. It does all this without the need to remember long strings of the dos command language. However for those of us who started learning about computers and the dos command language from the beginning we can’t help but still use some aspects of it to perform certain tasks. Sometimes it is easier to type a command in a dos window to get results.

Change Drive Letters in Dos Command Window?

  1. When you go to the run box (by pressing the WIN key and R) and typing cmd the dos command window will appear. You will be in this directory C:document and settingsUsername> Username will be the name you logged in as.
  2. Now to change to D drive you would type D: and then press enter.
  3. Now it will show D:>
  4. If you type F: it will show F:> and you will be typing commands that are directed at the DVD burner.
  5. If you want to go back to C: drive type C: then press enter. Now you will be back at C:document and settingsUsername> because that’s what directory you were in before.

Click on the screen shot below to see a larger picture. It shows how I change drive letters and how I change directories.

change drive letters

Two basics commands that you will need to know is how to change a drive letter and how to change directories.

How to Change Drive Letters in DOS

The drive letters are usually C: for your main drive and then D, E, F and so on.. I have a partition so my main drive is C: and the second part is D:. Then I have a cd drive (E) and a dvd burner (F).

How to change between directories in a dos command window.

  1. When you go to the run box (by pressing the WIN key and R) and typing cmd the dos command window will appear. You will be in this directory C:document and settingsUsername> Username will be the name you logged in as.
  2. To go back one directory type cd..(cd and dot dot)
  3. This will take you to C:document and settings
  4. If you type cd.. again you will be in C:>
  5. If you want to go to the windows directory on your computer you can type cd C:windows
  6. If you want to go to my pictures type cd C:document and settingsyour usernamemy documentsmy pictures

Watch this video for more information on how to change drive letters and directories in a dos window.

Notes how to change drive letters in Dos:

  • Here are some more Run commands you can try.
  • Make sure you type it exactly with a space when there is a space. One mistake and it will not work. You will have to retype it.
  • Changing directories in the dos command window is the first step to navigating around your computer with out the help of Windows.
  • Before Windows XP came along, you needed to change the drive letter to get to the Windows setup disc and then type in setup for it to start installing.

If you have any comments about how to change drive letters in the Dos command window, please feel free to comment below.

Comments

  1. Marshall says

    I’ve been having a big problem. One day while I was on my computer all my usb ports stopped functioning. I have tried everything except taking a sledge hammer to to it. Unistalling and letting the PC reinstall it. It comes up saying they are up and ready to use but when I put any devices I get nothing. Even when I look up the drive for it I can’t find anything. Can you please help me?

  2. Clothes for Kids says

    I have been checking out many of your stories and i can state pretty clever stuff. I will make sure to bookmark your website.

  3. Aaron says

    Learn how to use the “tab” key to autocomplete your directory names……also the up and down arrow for previous commands.

    • Mitz says

      You can press play on the video and then pause it… It will load and then you can press play. But you need to know how much download limit you have too…Getting pictures through email, watching videos, and browsing webpages all add up..