move (command)

In computing, move is a command in various command-line interpreters (shells) such as COMMAND.COM, cmd.exe,[1] 4DOS/4NT, and PowerShell. It is used to move one or more files or directories from one place to another.[2] The original file is deleted, and the new file may have the same or a different name. The command is analogous to the Unix mv command and to the OpenVOS move_file and move_dircommands.[3]

ReactOS-0.4.13 move command 667x434.png
The ReactOS move command
Developer(s)Microsoft, IBM, JP Software, DR, Novell, Joe Cosentino, ReactOS Contributors
Operating systemMS-DOS, PC DOS, MSX-DOS, OS/2, eComStation, ArcaOS, Windows, DR DOS, FreeDOS, ReactOS


The command is available in DOS,[4] IBM OS/2,[5] Microsoft Windows and ReactOS.[6] On MS-DOS, the command is available in versions 6 and later.[7] In Windows PowerShell, move is a predefined command alias for the Move-Item Cmdlet which basically serves the same purpose. The FreeDOS version was developed by Joe Cosentino.[8] DR DOS 6.0 includes an implementation of the move command.[9] The open-source MS-DOS emulator DOSBox has no MOVE command. Instead, the REN command can be used to move files.[10]


To move one or more files:

MOVE [/Y | /-Y] [drive:][path]filename1[,...] destination

To rename a directory:

MOVE [/Y | /-Y] [drive:][path]dirname1 [destination\]dirname2

To move a directory:

MOVE [/Y | /-Y] [drive:][path]dirname1 destination


  • [drive:][path]filename1: Specifies the location and name of the file or files you want to move.
  • destination: Specifies the new location of the file or directory. Destination can consist of a drive letter and colon, a directory name, or a combination, and must already exist. If you are moving only one file, you can also include a filename if you want to rename the file when you move it.
  • [drive:][path]dirname1: Specifies the directory you want to rename or move.
  • dirname2: Specifies the new name of the directory.
  • /Y: Suppresses prompting to confirm you want to overwrite an existing destination file.
  • /-Y: Causes prompting to confirm you want to overwrite an existing destination file.

The switch /Y may be present in the COPYCMD environment variable. This may be overridden with /-Y on the command line. Default is to prompt on overwrites unless MOVE command is being executed from within a batch script.


  • When moving a directory, dirname1 and its contents wind up as a subfolder beneath destination. Caution is advised - if the final subfolder of the destination path does not exist, dirname1 will be both moved and renamed.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Move". Microsoft Docs. Archived from the original on 2017-08-26. Retrieved 2017-08-26. Microsoft TechNet Move article
  2. ^ MS-DOS and Windows command line move command
  3. ^ "OpenVOS Commands Reference Manual" (PDF). StrataDOC Online Documentation Service for Stratus Products. pp. 2–552, 2–558. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2019-09-22. Retrieved October 1, 2019. move_dir: Purpose: This command moves a directory and its contents from one place to another. ... move_file: Purpose: This command moves a file or set of files to another file or directory.
  4. ^ Jamsa, Kris A. (1993), DOS: The Complete Reference, Osborne McGraw-Hill, p. 206, ISBN 0078819040, archived from the original on 2018-01-25.
  5. ^
  6. ^ "reactos/move.c at master". GitHub. Archived from the original on 2019-10-01.
  7. ^ Wolverton, Van (2003). Running MS-DOS Version 6.22 (20th Anniversary Edition), 6th Revised edition. Microsoft Press. ISBN 0-7356-1812-7.
  8. ^
  9. ^ "DR DOS 6.0 User Guide Optimisation and Configuration Tips" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2019-09-30. Retrieved 2019-08-12.
  10. ^ Commands - DOSBoxWiki

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit