Bad command or file name
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"Bad command or file name" is a common error message in MS-DOS and some other operating systems. It is occasionally used as an example of a computer message that is perfectly accurate yet confusing to the average user.
COMMAND.COM produced the message "Bad command or file name" when the first word of a command could not be interpreted. For MS-DOS, the first word of a command was the name of an internal command, executable file or batch file, so the error message provided an accurate description of the problem but easily confused novices. Though the source of the error was often a mistyped command, the wording gave the impression that files named in later words were damaged or had illegal filenames. Later, the wording of the error message was changed for clarity; both OS/2 and Windows NT have replaced the message with the following (where "foo" is replaced by the word causing error):
"foo" is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file
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- Harry Phillips, Eric Skagerberg, (2002). "New Perspectives on Microsoft Windows 2000 MS-DOS Command Line, Comprehensive, Windows XP Enhanced". Cengage Learning. ISBN 1285963679
- "GNU Project Archives:". GNU. GNU. Retrieved March 8, 2015.
- "TCSH: MostRecentRelease:". Ken Greer, Paul Placeway, Christos Zoulas, et al. tcsh.org. Retrieved March 8, 2015.
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