MATLAB Answers


string variable and command prompt

Asked by Keith Holmlund on 20 Jun 2018
Latest activity Edited by Stephen Cobeldick on 20 Jun 2018
I know you can use a string variable with cd such as dir = 'C:Users\User\Documents\Matlab' then cd(dir). Is that same type of command possible using the system command such as [status] = system('move dir\file.txt newlocation')


I would have though you could try it and get an answer far faster than on here! As far as I know the string you give to the system function will be interpreted in the context of the command line so if it is valid in that context then it would work, otherwise not.
Why do you need to system for this? movefile is simpler and faster.

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1 Answer

Answer by Philip Borghesani on 20 Jun 2018
 Accepted Answer

Short answer: yes.
Long answer: Any MATLAB function that takes one or more character vectors as input can be called in command mode see command-vs-function documentation for more information.
I am a bit surprised you had to ask is something not working the way you expect it to?


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Ah, I see your problem now. You would need to do something like this:
filename = fullfile( dir, 'file.txt' );
newLocation = ... % Similar to filename - create the full file path here
cmd = sprintf( 'move %s %s', filename, newLocation );
system( cmd );
to use dynamic strings within a command like that. There may be a slightly neater way than what I posted, but that is the kind of idea, to put the string together in that manner and then pass it to the system command.
thank you both, that ended up working
You might try movefile for this instead. Error handling will be simpler, it can work on all platforms, and it is probably faster.

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