MS-DOS tips for time and date stamps

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    How to make zip files and folders  with a formatted date and time stamp as the folder name in a DOS batch file  automatically

    We have a help rendition system internally, where all we writers do is create  the source files needed to make CHM files (HHK, HHC, HHP, HTML), zip up the HTML  source in a certain way with a certain file name, and submit it using a webform.  Out of that rendition engine we can get CHM, JavaHelp,WinHelp, NetHelp, or our  internally-created cross-platform help called Browser Help. Browser Help is the  system that works with BMC


    Performance Manager and I've posted before about how to create those help  systems automatically.

    Since I needed to render several help systems at once, meaning I had to make  multiple zip files containing the right content with the right zip file name,  and I dislike tedious repetitive tasks, but somehow I like the tedium of testing  and using scripts, I used DOS batch files to do the file creation and name  formatting for me.

    Today's tip is how to make folders with a date and time stamp as the folder  name. Our rendition engine likes its zip files with a certain naming convention.  As an added bonus, this routine works before and after ten in the morning. Silly  DOS, it doesn't put a leading zero in unless you tell it to. Here's how to tell  DOS to put in the leading zero if the current time is prior to 10:00am.


    REM Create sub directory called \yymmdd_hhmmss


    REM where yymmdd_hhmmss is a date_time stamp like 030902_134200


    set hh=%time:~0,2%


    REM Since there is no leading zero for times before 10 am, have to put in


    REM a zero when this is run before 10 am.


    if "%time:~0,1%"==" " set hh=0%hh:~1,1%


    set yymmdd_hhmmss=%date:~12,2%%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%_%hh%%time:~3,2%%time:~6,2%


    md h:\%yymmdd_hhmmss%



    A Command-line reference A-Z that contains all the reference  information for DOS command-line parameters is available on the Microsoft site.