The addition of the mouse and the Graphical User Interface made the computer accessible to many more people than would have been possible otherwise. Still, "pointing and clicking" can be tedious when performing routine or repetitive tasks. Just as people learn to use menu shortcuts (the Alt key) to save time, savvy users and administrators learn to write batch files and scripts to avoid having to type the same commands over and over. Scripts save time, increase accuracy, and serve as documentation to boot. Windows Vista comes with scripting, batch file and command line tools that can make a power user or administrator's life easier-if she or he knows what they are and how to use them. However, a general lack of information and awareness prevent their widespread use. Most current Windows users have no idea how powerful and effective these tools can be. The new scripting languages are a mystery to most Windows users. And, in Windows Vista, most command line tools aren't even discussed in the Windows Help system. Finally, last year Microsoft released a completely new scripting and command line environment called the Windows PowerShell. It's available as a free download, as an add-on to Windows Vista and XP, but few users are aware of its existence, let alone its power and potential.Knittel, Brian is the author of 'Windows Vista Guide to Scripting, Automation, and Command Line Tools' with ISBN 9780789737281 and ISBN 0789737280.