.NET Tip: Execute Commands From C#

I usually run across the need to execute commands or run applications during the installation or configuration of an application. I've found this technique very useful in place of using batch files. You have a much more robust environment to work with and you don't have to worry about someone modifying your batch file. For this example, I'm just going to show you how execute a command that you would normally use in a Command Prompt. I normally include a function like the following in a static utility class so that it is accessible from anywhere in the application.

public static int ExecuteCommand(string Command, int Timeout)
{
   int ExitCode;
   ProcessStartInfo ProcessInfo;
   Process Process;

   ProcessInfo = new ProcessStartInfo("cmd.exe", "/C " + Command);
   ProcessInfo.CreateNoWindow = true; 
   ProcessInfo.UseShellExecute = false;
   Process = Process.Start(ProcessInfo);
   Process.WaitForExit(Timeout);
   ExitCode = Process.ExitCode;
   Process.Close();

   return ExitCode;
}

The key here is the ProcessStartInfo class that gives you access to a process to execute your command. Here, I am telling the process not to create a window and to use the operating system shell to start the process. There are many more options available for ProcessStartInfo, so make sure you check them out to see what you can take advantage of in your application. In this, case I'm telling the process to execute cmd.exe. The /C parameter tells cmd.exe to execute the following string and then terminate. Again, cmd.exe has many more options that you should explore. The code then starts the process and waits for it to wither complete or time out. Finally, the exit code of the process is returned from the function.

I hope that you can see how easy it is to execute commands from within your application and that this may spark additional ideas of how you can enhance your applications.

About the Author

Jay Miller is a Software Engineer with Electronic Tracking Systems, a company dedicated to robbery prevention, apprehension, and recovery based in Carrollton, Texas. Jay has been working with .NET since the release of the first beta and is co-author of Learn Microsoft Visual Basic.Net In a Weekend. Jay can be reached via email at jmiller@sm-ets.com.



Comments

  • There are no comments yet. Be the first to comment!

Leave a Comment
  • Your email address will not be published. All fields are required.

Top White Papers and Webcasts

  • Today's agile organizations pose operations teams with a tremendous challenge: to deploy new releases to production immediately after development and testing is completed. To ensure that applications are deployed successfully, an automatic and transparent process is required. We refer to this process as Zero Touch Deployment™. This white paper reviews two approaches to Zero Touch Deployment--a script-based solution and a release automation platform. The article discusses how each can solve the key …

  • On-demand Event Event Date: December 18, 2014 The Internet of Things (IoT) incorporates physical devices into business processes using predictive analytics. While it relies heavily on existing Internet technologies, it differs by including physical devices, specialized protocols, physical analytics, and a unique partner network. To capture the real business value of IoT, the industry must move beyond customized projects to general patterns and platforms. Check out this webcast and join industry experts as …

Most Popular Programming Stories

More for Developers

RSS Feeds