Windows Batch File (.bat): Get Current Date as MMDDYYYY

   Posted July 24, 2005 by Jimmy Selix in Computer programming

I discovered the following tech-recipe while working on a some old dos batch files. This tutorial describes a simple .bat file used to create a folder based on the date in the MMDDYYYY format.

This .bat file is useful for scripters who need to use the current date variable in the format MMDDYYYY.
First, copy and paste the text in quotes to a text file. Then rename the file test.bat, and run it from the command line to view it. (Echo is on by default.)

The steps in this tutorial can be used in a powerful way. The FOR command can be reused and changed to query to see if a file exists. If so, you can create the folder, etc.

For now, let’s start with the basics.

    echo on
    @REM Seamonkey’s quick date batch (MMDDYYYY format)
    @REM Set ups %date variable
    @REM First parses month, day, and year into mm , dd, yyyy formats and then combines to be MMDDYYYY

    FOR /F “TOKENS=1,2 eol=/ DELIMS=/ ” %%A IN (‘DATE/T’) DO SET mm=%%B
    FOR /F “TOKENS=1,2 DELIMS=/ eol=/” %%A IN (‘echo %CDATE%’) DO SET dd=%%B
    FOR /F “TOKENS=2,3 DELIMS=/ ” %%A IN (‘echo %CDATE%’) DO SET yyyy=%%B
    SET date=%mm%%dd%%yyyy%

This does nothing but set up the %date variable to be today’s date in MMDDYYYY format so that it can be called later in the script, etc.


About Jimmy Selix

Jimmy Selix is an early adopter that loves to be one of the first on the block to have the latest and greatest in technology and gadgets. Another love of his is being able to share his knowledge to others seeking it. Feel free to drop any comments or questions that you may have.
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  • pbv kumar

    it works fantastic bu tmy problem is in format i want the date should be form 1 to 9 will be 01 ,02,03 & 09 like . kindly giv eme the solutions

  • Anonymous

    The 2nd line should have: echo %CDATE%
    instead of: DATE/T

  • hi

    this does not work

    • XJ Moonen

      Perhaps you should try this

      :: script for datestring in yyyymmdd format
      :: XJ Moonen Netherlands

      for /f “tokens=1,2” %%u in (‘date /t’) do set d=%%v
      for /f “tokens=1” %%u in (‘time /t’) do set t=%%u

      if “%t:~1,1%”==”:” set t=0%t%

      set datestr=%d:~6,4%%d:~3,2%%d:~0,2%
      set y=%d:~6,4%
      set m=%d:~3,2%
      set d=%d:~0,2%

      :: test if month

  • Ryan

    why not just do this:

    set mydate=%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%%date:~10,4%

    • Hersch

      Ryan, I love it, it is great one line no trickery with files etc. I expanded it further my requirements.

      echo Get the current date and time in YYYY-MM-DD-HH-MM-SS format
      SET isodt=%date:~10,4%-%date:~7,2%-%date:~4,2%-%time:~0,2%-%time:~3,2%-%time:~6,2%
      echo %isodt%

      Thanks a million

      • Jayson Franklin

        This should work:

        set scrptloc=%cd%
        cd %1
        set DATEFILE=dateFile.txt
        del %DATEFILE%
        date /t >> %DATEFILE%
        for /f “usebackq tokens=2-4 delims=^/ ” %%p in (%DATEFILE%) do set DIRNAME=%%r%%p%%q
        mkdir %DIRNAME%

    • mike

      genius!, simple, elegant! thanks!

      • Anonymous


    • Ketan Patel

      This is awesome and simple. Great stuff. Thanks a lot.

    • Startingoftheweek

      thanks a lot Ryan..


    • Bruce Lee

      This was a life-saver. Thank you.

    • RL

      If the goal of finding the date is copying/moving files from “today”, the following is a simple way:

      FORFILES -p “C:\source” /d 0 -c “Cmd /C COPY @FILE C:\destination”

      Will copy files 0 days old. Can also limit to certain files (log files for instance) by adding -m *.log


  • Rakesh Bhangre

    like my file in E drive – 06022009.DMP so how can copy this file in CD Drive using Batch file. my batch file is :-
    @echo off
    echo Copying started at %date% %time%
    xcopy “E:%date%.DMP” “C:Documents and SettingsHp1Local SettingsApplication DataMicrosoftCD BurningBACKUP*.*” /s /e /h /c /d /i /y
    xcopy “C:Documents and SettingsHp1Local SettingsApplication DataMicrosoftCD BurningBACKUP*.*” “G:BACKUP*.*”
    explorer g:

  • Marcus

    Perfect, exactly what i wanted, thanks for saving me 2 hours !

  • how to save file with filename+current date
    ex : myfile20090210

    • leif

      not the best at this yet dont even realy know what half what i posted mean but i just got it working with the Filename_”%PDATE%”. if you dont want a gap inbetween file and date do Filename”%PDATE%”. hope it helps.

      FOR /F “TOKENS=1,2 DELIMS=/ ” %%A IN (‘DATE /T’) DO SET mm=%%B
      FOR /F “TOKENS=2,3 DELIMS=/ ” %%A IN (‘DATE /T’) DO SET dd=%%B
      FOR /F “TOKENS=3* DELIMS=/ ” %%A IN (‘DATE /T’) DO SET yyyy=%%B

      set /A dd=%dd%

      set Pdate=%yyyy%_%mm%_%dd%
      echo %Pdate%

      mkdir C:MYFILE_”%PDATE%”

      • Okey
        that helps

  • Some User

    For programmers in the USA, use THIS script instead, otherwise it won’t work with the standard Windows US MM/DD/YYYY format.

    @Echo Off
    Set YYYY-MM-DD=%DATE:~6,4%-%DATE:~0,2%-%DATE:~3,2%

    • Anonymous

      This was spot-on, I was using US timezone and no script was working. Finally, your script did the trick. Thanx a billion 🙂

  • Chris Felpel

    Many thanks. I started to write my own then quickly remembered writing bat files requires a fine mix of science and art with a dash of experence.

  • how can i combine the date and time to create a file name. please advise

    echo %date:~10,4%%date:~7,2%%date:~4,2%

    ren d:templog.pdf Survey%date:~10,4%%date:~7,2%%date:~4,2%.pdf


    for /f “tokens=1-5 delims=:” %%d in (“%time%”) do rename “hope.pdf” %%d-%%e.pdf

  • FP

    Or you can use %date% and parse it later in your script.

  • I had been using a method similar to yours but recently I found one that is even simpler:

    The %DATE% AND %TIME% variables contain the formated date and time so you an just extract the substrings using regular variable syntax

    set _DATETIME=%DATE:~10,4%%DATE:~4,2%%DATE:~7,2%%TIME:~0,2%%TIME:~3,2%%TIME:~6,2%

    In my case

    %DATE% contains “Tue 05/26/2009”
    so %DATE:~10,4% means to extract a substring 4 characters long starting from character 10

    If you weren’t aware of that way of handling substrings for any variables, now you know.

    If you have a different default date format than mine you will have to adapt the parameters

    • Here’s what I use. It queries the registry first to figure out what format the date is going to be returned in. It currently supports UK and US locales (as that’s all I need to support at the moment). Trivial to extend it to support others.

      @echo off
      goto test

      setlocal enableextensions enabledelayedexpansion
      set _RV=
      set _ERR=0
      set _CMD=reg query “HKCUControl PanelInternational” /v sShortDate
      for /f “usebackq skip=2 tokens=3,* delims= ” %%i in (`%_CMD%`) do (
      rem Amsterdam/Houston servers:
      rem Short date format (%%i): M/d/yyyy
      rem Sample %DATE%: Thu 05/29/2009
      rem London servers:
      rem Short date format (%%i): dd/MM/yyyy
      rem Sample %DATE%: 29/05/2009
      set D=!DATE!
      echo i: %%i
      echo D: !D!
      if “%%i”==”M/d/yyyy” (
      rem I’m assuming the day abbreviation will always be three chars
      rem (so we account for four in total, including the space). So
      rem far, I can attest that this is definitely the case on Wed &
      rem Thu 😉
      set yyyy=!D:~-4!
      set mm=!D:~-10,-8!
      set dd=!D:~-7,-5!
      ) else if “%%i”==”dd/MM/yyyy” (
      set yyyy=!D:~-4!
      set mm=!D:~-7,-5!
      set dd=!D:~-10,-8!
      ) else (
      echo fatal: I don’t understand this system’s date format (%%i^)
      set _ERR=1
      set _RETVAL=!yyyy!!mm!!dd!
      endlocal & set _YYYYMMDD=%_RETVAL% & set _ERROR=%_ERR%
      exit /b %_ERROR%

      call :get_date_yyyymmdd
      echo formatted date: %_YYYYMMDD%

      • Anonymous

        Thanks Trent that is what I want: getting day month and year INDEPENDANT of the format used. I am going to study this.

      • AMan

        Perfect, exactly what I was looking for!

  • dan

    Thanks guys… I really didn’t have time to figure this out myself
    I was going to recreate xset32 for win64 in c++ or PERL, but this is much easier.

  • Ben Personick

    Erms, that IS pretty old school, try:

    Set TDate=%date:~10,4%%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%

    1 line = better


    PS. Also it’s bad form to use a variable with the same name as a command, so, don’t do that. =P



  • Anonymous

    May this is usefull, especially since it is an example how to get all kinds of everything INDEPENDENT of the current language locale and date format settings using the Windows Scripting Host

    :: This uses Windows Scripting Host to set variables
    :: to the current date/time/day/day_number
    :: for Win9x/ME/NT/W2K/XP etc
    :: Thanks go to Todd Vargo for his scripting
    @echo off
    set TmpFile=”%temp%.tmp.vbs”
    echo> %TmpFile% n=Now
    echo>>%TmpFile% With WScript
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set year=” + CStr(Year(n))
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set yr=” + Right(Year(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set month=”+ Right(100+Month(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set day=” + Right(100+Day(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set hour=” + Right(100+Hour(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set min=” + Right(100+Minute(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set sec=” + Right(100+Second(n),2)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set dow=” + WeekDayName(Weekday(n),1)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set dow2=” + WeekDayName(Weekday(n))
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set iso=” + CStr(1 + Int(n-2) mod 7)
    echo>>%TmpFile% .Echo “set iso2=” + CStr(Weekday(n,2))
    echo>>%TmpFile% End With
    cscript //nologo “%temp%.tmp.vbs” > “%temp%.tmp.bat”
    call “%temp%.tmp.bat”
    del “%temp%.tmp.bat”
    del %TmpFile%
    set TmpFile=
    set stamp=%year%-%month%-%day%_%hour%.%min%.%sec%

    echo The year (YYyy) is “%year%”
    echo The year (yy) is “%yr%”
    echo The month is “%month%”
    echo The day (%dow%) is “%day%”
    echo The full weekday name is “%dow2%”
    echo ISO 8601 Day-Of-Week number is “%iso%”
    echo The hour is “%hour%”
    echo The minute is “%min%”
    echo The second is “%sec%”

    echo The date and time stamp is “%stamp%”
    echo time (hhmmss) (%hour%%min%%sec%)
    echo date A (yyyymmdd) (%year%%month%%day%)
    echo date B (mmddyyyy) (%month%%day%%year%)
    echo date C (ddmmyyyy) (%day%%month%%year%)
    echo date D [yymmdd] [%yr%%month%%day%]
    echo date E [mmddyy] [%month%%day%%yr%]
    echo date F [ddmmyy] [%day%%month%%yr%]
    :: datetime.bat

    • anon

      Brilliant Marc. Hopefully that will be useful with multiple users across Europe.

      • Anonymous

        Brilliantly searched on internet 🙂 mostly
        I did not invent that all for myself.
        Marc Wentink

    • Anonymous

      i just want to change the date format from m/d/yyyy to dd-mmm-yyyy and respectively please email me to

    • Sunilthomask

      Nice Thanks M8

    • Parthiv Raval

      This one is the best solution..thanks to marcwentink

  • Anonymous

    I have read though all of these posts and still can’t seem to figure out how to make a directory (folder) with the current date in the following format 09_08_13 (yy_mm_dd). Can anyone help me with this?

  • Anonymous

    The solution using VB script is awesome.
    Eventually, extracting date is independent of regional setting on each particular computer.

    Thank you, marcwentink.

    • ASh

      how can I create a file.txt containing the name of a file with the date of yesterday?

      for example:

      I have to create a file named:
      script_ftp.txt -> within this file must be:

      get TCFILE720/TCCFASIE.F(dated yesterday) S: files TCCFASIE.F(dated yesterday)

      how can I create a file.txt containing the name of a file with the date of yesterday?

      for example:

      I have to create a file named:
      script_ftp.txt -> within this file must be:

      get TCFILE720/TCCFASIE.F20090825 S: files TCCFASIE.F20090825.dat

  • Anonymous

    Thank you seamonkey420,

    This is just what I was looking for.


  • David Thomas

    one liner (YYYYMMDD): %date:~10,4%%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%
    output: 20090830

  • Thanks, this is exactly what I was looking for!

  • Willaim Shaffer

    I was able to use your format and add 2 more lines for the time to get a needed stamp
    For /f “tokens=1-4 delims=: ” %%a in (‘time /t’) do (set time=%%a%%b%%c)
    Thanks for the help!

  • Anonymous

    You should have tried 1-3 in Tokens……!!!!!!!! or try out this……….
    for /f “tokens=1,2,3 delims=/ ” %%a in (‘DATE /T’) do set date=%%c-%%b-%%a

    I know I am too late to reply but it might help someone else in need……..

    • Name


    • Eric

      use “tokens=2,3,4” to get the year instead of the day of week

  • Anonymous

    whats help i am trying to change the existing date in a txt file to the current system date……. can anyone help the date is located in line no 36 how to replace it

  • Anonymous

    I trird your batch file then I added a few modifications to accomodate my backup goal. Nice work, excellent contribution!


  • Anonymous

    here it is with one line

    for /f “tokens=1,2,3,4 delims=/ ” %i in (‘DATE /T’) do set mydate=%j%k%l

    it will set mydate as

    Date /T
    Tue 01/12/2010

    set mydate=01122010

  • Anonymous

    can you please send the complete code which will execute in xp to cahnge the date format from m/d/yyyy to dd-mmm-yyyy respectively to my mail id ”

  • Anonymous

    can you please send the complete code which will execute in xp to cahnge the date format from m/d/yyyy to dd-mmm-yyyy respectively to my mail id ”

  • TooMuchCoffeeMan

    And now for something completely similar:

    For /F “Tokens=1-8 Delims=.:/ ” %%a In (‘Echo %Date% %Time%’) Do (Set TimeStamp=%%d-%%b-%%c %%e:%%f:%%g)

    My brain hurts!

  • Anonymous

    This works great!! I just need to make it do YYYMMDD

  • vtdlbm

    this is for european time format (date /t =>

    for /f “tokens=1-3 delims=.” %i in (‘date/t’) do set dd=%i & set mm=%j & set yyyy=%k

  • tim m

    I have a need to run this on different computers where the Windows short date format (depending on OS it’s set by Regional Settings applet in Control Panel) can vary depending on user’s (developers) tastes. Parsing is doable if, and only if, they are all using the same short date format which %date% also uses. I am afraid there is no solution to my situation except coding a batch file for each format – and if the user changes the format, they’re screwed. Even if a solution exists, it’s going to involve an ugly convoluted process of ascertaining the date format first and then parsing. Why did MS not also steal the %Y %M and %d env vars from unix when they ripped it off for DOS?!!!

    • ee

      my batch looks like this
      COPY “c:test.txt” “f:backup%date:~11,6%.%date:~7,2%.%date:~3,2% test.txt”

  • pbv kumar

    can any one help me out how can i use month as JAN, FEB , and when month end how can i pick my month as previous one, i mean current month-previousmonth.for e.g 0n 01 Jun 10 i should get 31 May 10

  • MeaCulpa

    Why not use the built-in string tailoring operators?
    for mmmmddyy:

    echo %DATE:~5,2%%DATE:~8,2%%DATE:~0,4%

    • Patrick Ru

      echo %date:~4,10%

      echo %date:-=%

      echo %date:/=%

      echo %date:/=-%

    • Patrick Ru

      set d=%date:-=%
      echo %d:~4,8%

  • Anonymous

    Thanks, that’s exactly what I was looking for! I was pissed at the DD-MM-YYYY that barged in every time I was creating a a folder based on the current date. I couldn’t find the windows exe files to solve this and I wasn’t used to seeing that, I think I never will. Great job, I managed to do what you did.

  • Abc

    its not working..

  • well i have 1 question for all of you. i made a backup of my dump file with date and time. there is also command to then zip the same file in winzip format. winzip does not allow me to do that as when it starts zipping , the time has changed. forexample when my dmp file backup completes like imran 2010-24-10-12-20-12, and starts zip the time changes for a min or so. how to stop time when backup start so winzip completes its operation and backup the dmp file.
    command is

    Get the current date and time in YYYY-MM-DD-HH-MM-SS format
    echo %isodt%
    SET isodt=%date:~10,4%-%date:~7,2%-%date:~4,2%-%time:~0,2%-%time:~3,2%-%time:~6,2%

    exp file=e:db%isodt% .dmp
    cd c:program fileswinzip
    winzip32 -min -a -s e:db%isodt% .ZIP

    e:db%isodt% .dmp
    IF NOT EXIST e:db%isodt% .ZIP GOTO END
    thanks in advance

  • Gargoba Honz

    jasonwhaley is absolutely right – instead of fiddling around here programmers should have killed mr. gates a long tie ago for this totally braindead implementation of such a basic thing like getting a date format working on every computer on the planet. extremely stupid!

  • The simple answer for converting from DD/MM/YYYY to a more script friendly version DD-MM-YYYY is:


    thats it, simple, use it to say save a log file, example:


  • Webstuff

    echo %date:~-4,4%%date:~-7,2%%date:~0,2%

    Does the job in YYYYMMDD format in one line

    • Fixit

      The DAY doesn’t show up. Just the Year, Month, and day of week.

      • Dv400b

        Sounds like your date format is in “Day Month/Date/Year” format, in which case you want


        • Stephen Jung

          Can you also get the quarter?

  • Atsuine

    need some help, i need a DOS script that will return previous date but only weekdays. i.e say Monday is 2011-01-31 and the script will return 2011-01-28, all help appreciated.


  • Mihai Mandis

    There’re diferent data format given by “echo %date%_%time%” command.
    1. 03/08/2011_12:05:31.12
    2. Thu 03/03/2011_07:38 PM
    3. 2011-03-08_12:05:31.12
    It might be quite difficult to get the date and time by parsing a string given by “echo %date%_%time%” command.
    I’ve choosen to use “” executable to get data and time:

  • Frankyke

    Hi all, how to take out the “0” in month?

    The date is 11/02/2011. If it is 02, I may just want single digit “2” instead of “02”. If it is 12 then may keep both digits “12”.

    thanks all.

  • Kouliscon

    Hello all,
    i am usign with GPO a batch file at logon and logoff of the computers which copies a specific location to a network location for backup reasons.
    The data has become big and i need to add to the batch file ONLY the files which were CREATED the last 90 days.
    anybody can help?
    the batch file command is:
    xcopy *.* /s /r /e /d /h /y /exclude:\ \
    thx in advance

  • Venkat Lvr

    can you please send the complete code which will execute in xp to show date format from dd-mm-yyy to dd-mmm-yyyy respectively to my mail id ”
    Eg: 01-04-2011 to 01-Apr-2011.

  • Idris_tas


  • jymurthy

    How can I print previous day’s date

  • minipop4747

    I want to get 2 days back days in YYYYMMDDHHMM format to create a batch file(need cmd command).

    as an example today is : 201112161200 and i want to get 2 days back date as below 201112141200

    ECHO %date:~10,4%%date:~7,2%%date:~4,2%%time:~0,2%%time:~3,2%

    Mention command gives the current date in above format 201112161200.

    But i need to get 2 days back date from the mention format

    if any one knows how to do this please help me

  • It can be done much more simpler:
    FOR /F “TOKENS=1* DELIMS= ” %%A IN (‘DATE /T’) DO SET mydate=%%A
    FOR /F “TOKENS=1,2,3 DELIMS=.” %%A IN (‘echo %mydate%’) DO SET mydate=%%C%%B%%A
    echo sergeiv_%mydate%.bkf

    The first line removes space after the date, the second one formats the date, the third one prints the result as a filename example.

  • Script Guy

    How about this for something simple with just one or two lines to fit the needs regardless???

    for /f “tokens=2-4 delims=/ ” %%A in (“%date%”) do set “mm=%%A” do (& set “dd=%%B”) do (& set “yyyy=%%C”)

    set yy=%DATE:~-2%

    You could also just put your variable in whatever format you need to the dd/yyyy/mm format to be; example:

    for /f “tokens=2-4 delims=/ ” %%A in (“%date%”) do set “dt=%%C%%A%%B”

    You can use this for a timestamp in the 12 hour intervals and include either AM or PM too:

    for /f “tokens=1-3 delims=: ” %%A in (‘Time /T’) do set “HRTime=%%A%%B%%C”



    Simply superb and Thanks a lot for your tips

  • thierry

    Even simplier:
    in VBS file “buildSetDateTimeVars.vbs” :

    WScript.Echo “set Date_yyyy=” + CStr(Year(n))
    WScript.Echo “set Date_yy=” + Right(Year(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Date_mm=”+ Right(100+Month(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Date_dd=” + Right(100+Day(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Time_hh=” + Right(100+Hour(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Time_mm=” + Right(100+Minute(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Time_sec=” + Right(100+Second(n),2)
    WScript.Echo “set Date_dow=” + WeekDayName(Weekday(n),1)
    WScript.Echo “set Date_dowlong=” + WeekDayName(Weekday(n))

    in batch file (assuming they’re on same path), we loop on script result and execute command :
    for /F “TOKENS=1 eol=/ DELIMS=/” %%F in (‘cscript %~dp0buildgetDateBatch.vbs’) do %%F

    The %~dp0 stands for “disk” “path” of “batch itself” : we ensure that the script will be searched in same path a calling batch.

    No need to create /execute/clean temp files.

  • Robert Ridenour

    Here’s an easy way of handling the date/time format, making it easy to put in any format you want…

    REM Get Date/Time numbers
    Set Year=%date:~10,4%
    Set Month=%date:~7,2%
    Set Day=%date:~4,2%
    Set Hour=%time:~0,2%
    Set Minute=%time:~3,2%
    Set Second=%time:~6,2%

    (Note: I’m in the USA, so if you aren’t, you may need to adjust the offsets above – this was covered I think in a prior post)

    Now you can format a file along these lines (or easily change it to however you want):