How to wait in a batch script?


I am trying to write a batch script and trying to wait 10 seconds between 2 function calls. The command:

sleep 10

Does not make the batch file wait for 10 seconds.

I am running Windows XP.

Note: This is not a complete duplicate of Sleeping in a batch file as the other question is about also about python, while this is about windows batch files.

Best Answer

You can ping an address that doesn't exist and specify the desired timeout:

ping -n 1 -w 10000 > nul

And since the address does not exist, it'll wait 10,000 ms (10 seconds) and return.

  • The -w 10000 part specifies the desired timeout in milliseconds.
  • The -n 1 part tells ping that it should only try once (normally it'd try 4 times).
  • The > nul part is appended so the ping command doesn't output anything to screen.

You can easily make a sleep command yourself by creating a sleep.bat somewhere in your PATH and using the above technique:

rem SLEEP.BAT - sleeps by the supplied number of seconds

@ping -n 1 -w %1000 > nul

NOTE (September 2002): The 192.0.2.x address is reserved as per RFC 3330 so it definitely will not exist in the real world. Quoting from the spec: - This block is assigned as "TEST-NET" for use in documentation and example code. It is often used in conjunction with domain names or in vendor and protocol documentation. Addresses within this block should not appear on the public Internet.