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BSB a DOS rebuttal

2000's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,019

07-07-01, 11:49 PM   #1  
I read your piece in the Tips forum about managing internet index.dats with a program named spider. I am sure it's a fine program and well suited to most Users. On behalf of those who need the program "Thanks".

On the other hand I have been deleting IE internet index.dats using a DOS batch file for a long time. It is not tricky.

Process: Windows > Shutdown > Restart in MSDOS mode > run batch file > Exit, restarting Windoze. Windoze initializes internet index.dats (except todays hist) to their default size when it restarts after they have been deleted in MSDOS mode. DOS kill the files; Windoze performs the maintenance. Todays hist is created as needed.

It's not necessary to obtain a special program to view useable contents of index.dats (everything needed is installed) but a little friendly simple DOS hacking helps. The most useful and the easiest index.dat to hack is the main history.

Process: WinDOS virtual machine > Copy the index.dat to a new location with a new filename > remove some of the chafe with FIND outputing to a new filename > in WinDOS open the latter with Wordpad.

shorten command length
C:\WINDOWS> set dest=c:\windows\desktop

C:\WINDOWS> copy %windir%\history\history.ie5\index.dat %dest%\hist.0

C:\WINDOWS> find /v "Cache" %dest%\hist.0 | find "//" >%dest%\hist.1

C:\WINDOWS> set dest=

C:\WINDOWS> start wordpad %windir%\desktop\hist.1

True: the resulting file still contains machine chafe and is not neatly formatted, however, URLS may be examined.

To display index.dats in WinDOS with the DIR command the full filepathspec must be used. The ATTRIB command does not suffer the same limitation, but its output differs.

find index.dats
C:\WINDOWS> attrib index.dat /s
C:\WINDOWS> attrib index.dat /s >%windir%\desktop\text
C:\WINDOWS> start notepad %windir%\desktop\text

A general caution: an index.dat file within a Internet Subfolder named USERDATA or something similar is usually stored by your ISP and should be left alone. View it if you're curious. But be careful not to make changes.

BSB: a no bones batch file for IE.5 follows. With minor alterations index.dats could be saved, and cookies could be selectively deleted. DOS groans once more.

Other Readers: DO NOT!! copy batch files or scripts off internet bulletin boards and use them, UNLESS they can be verified as safe for use on your computer. DON'T DO IT.

@Echo off
If not "%windir%"=="" goto WinDOS

:: todays hist
If Exist index.dat Del index.dat

:: A good place to hack/extract lost URLS.
If Exist index.dat Del index.dat

:: Pure junk storage
If Exist index.dat Del index.dat
:: other temps? - see browser settings

:: And this one too
If Exist index.dat Del index.dat

:: Kill all Cookies
Rem >$$$$.txt
Attrib -h -r -s *.txt
Del *.txt
Goto End

Echo Run in Real Mode MSDOS only


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BSB's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 782

07-09-01, 05:35 AM   #2  
Cool, Thanks for the info 2000. Your right, its not tricky to delete them dat files from dos, unless your system is a NT box using nfts ( I cant seem to find a salution from dos disk to delete the dat files)

The trickiest part for "most" users is finding the files while in dos. I was going to add the info you posted to my tips post, but I could not for the life of me remember what web site I was at that had the info, and since I forgot to cntl-d the site it will take me a few weeks to stumble on it again.

Oh yeah, not to mention when you mention dos to a lot of people their eyes glaze over ad give you a "what is d.o.s.?" look. hehehe.


p.s. I cant write a single line of code, even to add 2 + 2, to save my life.

2000's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,019

07-09-01, 02:04 PM   #3  
I know what you mean about DOS. A few years ago, during my 'computer interest days', I attended AA certified night courses in computer repair and networking. [Now, a deliberate faint memory]. I was the only person, including the instructor, with DOS experience.

(Funny, in a way: how do you start a dead WinDOS based computer, or real DOS,...[And, what happens when you're faced with UNIX?], when the problem is file based...without resorting to Command Line entries? Sure - tell your friend, or a customer [for those pursing a career], the only way to fix this is to FDISK or FORMAT the hard drive and reinstall or change the OS, or Upgrade. Oh!, BTW, all of your data will be lost, unless we use a low level disk recovery program. ["What do you mean!, you don't have a current backup?"]. ["If you don't have a Windows backup, there is nothing else that I can do".] [Fix that DOS based cash register(?)...humm....,we'll upgrade it to Windows and put Icons on the keys]. [Sounds like a McDonalds and Berger King solution!].

After discovering my "DOS talent", the instuctor asked me to stand in one evening. I spent the first half explaining rudimentary command syntax and command line entries. [A real question asked: "Where are the Icons?"] [I bit my tongue as the instructor answered]. [Wow!, things happen without a mouse]. The other half was spent teaching the '"fine art" of starting a WinDOS machine with DRDOS from a floppy disk and making file corrections. (If it runs the hardware and BIOS are O. K.). (DRDOS blinds sides MSDOS, eliminating the possibly of an invalid version, plus changes are possible with access to duplicate 16 bit file system entries). Such things stop with NT and the next generation of Windows.

The next generation of Windows [can you say "cloaked UNIX porting, mixed with other tidbits, amalgamated in a Windows mould"] is sure to be: "Don't touch that dial!" "We are in control of your horizontal". "We are in control of your vertical". And, the invasion of privacy [if you're naive enough to believe that it exists now] will be absolute. Problems? Seek online support! "But, it won't run!" "And, I couldn't get online when it did run". I can see it now... proliferation of utilities, created by 10 year old Ridilan bathed minds, to enable Users and "manage" the OS. Behind the snide humor, modicums of truth exist.

My NT experience is limited to the classes, and besides that, I don't remember NT system variables, however, I can tell you where to find batch information. Seek the old deja.com group "alt.msdos.batch.nt". Deja is now owned by Google. Two posters worthy of paying attention to, among others, are "Ted Davis" [a batch master] and "Derk" [an old time Machine Code Programmer].

Yes, I do understand!
Have a Command Line day.

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