MS-DOS PRINT Command and Windows

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The MS-DOS Print utility is designed to allow printing from MS-DOS while the computer is processing other MS-DOS commands, including running MS-DOS- based applications. This printing is done in the background while the MS-DOS application runs in the foreground. Thus, Print is a terminate-and- stay-resident (TSR) print spooling program.

Like any memory-resident application, Print may cause problems when running with Windows (for example, slower printing, or slower or erratic operation in general). If you are having problems printing, it may a good idea to remove the Print command from the AUTOEXEC.BAT file.


Print allows you to print multiple files. For example, the following command
print *.bat
places all BAT files that are in the current subdirectory into the print queue to be printed, and begins printing in the background.

Print has the following switches:
   Switch          Explanation
   ------          -----------

   /D:<printer>    Where <printer> is a device such as LPT1 or COM1

   /Q:<size>       Where <size> is the number of print files that can
                   be in the queue at once

   /B:<size>       Where <size> is the size of the print buffer

   /S:<slice>      Where <slice> is the number of times per second
                   PRINT.COM is allowed to take control of the
                   computer. When PRINT.COM has control of the
                   computer, execution of other applications is

   /M:<max>        Where <max> is the length of each time slice. The
                   higher the number, the more processor time
                   PRINT.COM gets.

   /U:<wait>       Where <wait> is the amount of timer ticks PRINT.COM
                   waits if the printer is busy

   /T              Terminates printing all files in the print queue

   /C              Suspends printing all files in the print queue.

   /P              Turns on print mode.

Some switches can only be used during the initial loading of Print; see your MS-DOS manual for more information. The switches can be combined on a single line. For example, the command
print autoexec.bat /c config.sys /p
removes AUTOEXEC.BAT from the print queue and adds CONFIG.SYS to the print queue. If the command Print is entered with no parameters or filenames, the contents of the print queue are displayed.


Article ID: 58143 - Last Review: September 24, 2011 - Revision: 3.0
  • Microsoft Windows 2.1 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 2.11 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 3.0 Standard Edition

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