Applies to: Windows Server (All supported versions)

Windows Script Host provides an environment in which users can execute scripts in various languages that use various object models to perform tasks.


wscript [<scriptname>] [/b] [/d] [/e:<engine>] [{/h:cscript|/h:wscript}] [/i] [/job:<identifier>] [{/logo|/nologo}] [/s] [/t:<number>] [/x] [/?] [<ScriptArguments>]


Parameter Description
scriptname Specifies the path and file name of the script file.
/b Specifies batch mode, which doesn't display alerts, scripting errors, or input prompts. The /b parameter is the opposite of /i.
/d Starts the debugger.
/e Specifies the engine that is used to run the script. This parameter lets you run scripts that use a custom file name extension. Without the /e parameter, you can only run scripts that use registered file name extensions. For example, if you try to run this command:
cscript test.admin
You receive this error message: Input Error: There's no script engine for file extension .admin.
One advantage of using nonstandard file name extensions is that it guards against accidentally double-selecting a script and running something you didn't actually want to run.
Using this extension doesn't create a permanent association between the .admin file name extension and VBScript. Each time you run a script that uses a .admin file name extension, you need to use the /e parameter.
/h:cscript Registers cscript.exe as the default script host for running scripts.
/h:wscript Registers wscript.exe as the default script host for running scripts. This behavior is the default when the /h option is omitted.
/i Specifies interactive mode, which displays alerts, scripting errors, and input prompts.
The /i parameter is the default and the opposite of /b.
/job:\<identifier> Runs the job identified by identifier in a .wsf script file.
/logo Specifies that the Windows Script Host banner is displayed in the console before the script runs.
The /logo parameter is the default and the opposite of /nologo.
/nologo Specifies that the Windows Script Host banner isn't displayed before the script runs. The /nologo parameter is the opposite of /logo.
/s Saves the current command prompt options for the current user.
/t:\<number> Specifies the maximum time the script can run (in seconds). You can specify up to 32,767 seconds.
The default is no time limit.
/x Starts the script in the debugger.
ScriptArguments Specifies the arguments passed to the script. Each script argument must be preceded with a slash (/).
/? Displays Help at the command prompt.


  • Performing this task doesn't require you to have administrative credentials. Consider performing this task as a user without administrative credentials as a security best practice.
  • To open a command prompt, on the Start screen, type cmd, and then select command prompt.
  • Each parameter is optional. However you can't specify script arguments without specifying a script. If you don't specify a script or any script arguments, wscript.exe displays the Windows Script Host Settings dialog box. Use the dialog box to set global scripting properties for all scripts that wscript.exe runs on the local computer.
  • The /t parameter prevents excessive running of scripts by setting a timer. When the time exceeds the specified value, wscript interrupts the script engine and ends the process.
  • Windows script files usually have one of the following file name extensions: .wsf, .vbs, .js.
  • If you double-select a script file with an extension that has no association, the Open With dialog box appears. Select wscript or cscript, and then select Always use this program to open this file type. This registers wscript.exe or cscript.exe as the default script host for files of this file type.
  • You can set properties for individual scripts. For more information about Windows Script Host, see Windows Script Host overview.
  • Windows Script Host can use .wsf script files. Each .wsf file can use multiple scripting engines and perform multiple jobs.