Escaping %’s in file-/folder-names at the command-line



If you are an IT administrator, you may have come across the problem of needing to escape a backslash (\\) or forward slash (/) character in a file or folder name. This can be a tricky problem to solve, as the backslash and forward slash are both special characters in the Windows command line. In this article, we will discuss how to properly escape these characters in order to successfully access the file or folder.

To begin, it is important to understand that the backslash and forward slash are both special characters in the Windows command line. The backslash is used as a path separator, while the forward slash is used as an argument separator. Because of this, they must be escaped if you want to access a file or folder that contains one of these characters in its name.

The best way to escape a backslash or forward slash in a file or folder name is to use the escape character (^). This character is used to indicate that the following character should be treated as a literal character rather than as a special character. For example, if you wanted to access a folder called “C:\\My Documents,” you would need to use the following command:

cd “C:^\\My Documents”

Notice how the backslash is preceded by the escape character. This tells the command line to treat the backslash as a literal character rather than as a path separator.

It is also important to note that you can use the escape character to escape other special characters as well. For example, if you wanted to access a file with a space in its name, you could use the following command:

cd “My^ File.txt”

In this command, the escape character is used to indicate that the space should be treated as a literal character rather than as an argument separator.

Finally, it is important to note that the backslash and forward slash are not the only special characters that must be escaped in the Windows command line. Other characters such as quotation marks (“), asterisks (*), and exclamation points (!) must also be escaped in order to be used properly.

Escaping special characters in the Windows command line can be a tricky task, but it is an important skill for any IT administrator to master. By understanding how to properly escape the backslash and forward slash characters, you will be able to access files and folders with ease.

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