WCD - Wherever Change Directory

chdir for DOS and Unix, w/C src

|wcd| contact| https://waterlan.home.xs4all.nl/|

WCD - Wherever Change Directory

Wcd is a command-line program to change directory fast. It saves time typing at the keyboard. One needs to type only a part of a directory name and wcd will jump to it. Wcd has a fast selection method in case of multiple matches and allows aliasing and banning of directories. Wcd also includes a full screen interactive directory tree browser with speed search.

Wcd was modeled after Norton Change Directory (NCD). NCD appeared first in The Norton Utilities, Release 4, for DOS in 1987, published by Peter Norton. NCD was written by Brad Kingsbury.

Examples of wcd usage:
wcd Desk
will change to directory /home/waterlan/Desktop

But also
wcd *top
will do that.

Wcd is free to use and you can get the source code too.

Features of wcd:

  • Full screen interactive directory browser with speed search and zoom in/out.
  • Present the user a list in case of multiple matches.
  • Wildcards *, ? and [SET] supported.
  • Directory stack, push pop.
  • Subdir definition possible. E.g. wcd subdira/subdirb
  • Long directory names support in Win95/98/NT DOS-box
  • Windows LAN UNC paths supported.
  • Change drive and directory at once.
  • Alias directories.
  • Ban directories.
  • Exclude directories.
  • Alternate stack per shell or terminal.
  • Multi user: Jump to folders of your colleagues.
  • Multi platform:
  • Native language support: Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese simplified, Danish, Dutch, English, Esperanto, Finnish, French, Friulian, German, Romanian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese.
  • Unicode Level 3 support (all UCS characters including double width and combining characters).
  • Option to ignore diacritics for Latin-based scripts.

  • WCD is free software, distributed under GNU General Public License, version 2.



    Brazilian Portuguese

    How to install wcd on DOS, Windows, or OS/2.
    How to build wcd for DOS, Windows, or OS/2 with GCC.
    How to build wcd for DOS, Windows, or OS/2 with Watcom C.
    How to build wcd for Windows with Microsoft Visual C.
    How to build and install wcd on Unix/Linux/Cygwin.

    How to open wcd best match directory in Windows Explorer.

    Download WCD:

    Latest version: 6.0.6-beta1 Mar 26 2024

    Latest stable version: 6.0.5 Apr 23 2023

    For previous releases see: Old versions of wcd

    Ready-to-Run binaries

    TIP: DOS/Windows with PDCurses interface: Set environment variable PDC_RESTORE_SCREEN so that the screen will be restored after wcd exits. Add this to your autoexec.bat file: set PDC_RESTORE_SCREEN=1

    Binaries of wcd for other platforms are welcome. Send them by e-mail to

    Source Code

    Comments and patches are welcome. Also help with translations is appreciated. If you want to help translating the wcd messages into more languages go to the Translation Project. For UI messages see Wcd messages, and for the manual see Wcd manual

    Latest development version from Git repository:

    Check out the new repo with this command:

    git clone https://git.code.sf.net/p/wcd/wcd

    Beta version

    Complete list of changes: WHATSNEW

    Windows version with ncurses interface.

    The Windows versions of wcd use the PDCurses library for the interface. PDCurses development has been on hold for a long time. It took 10 years to go from version 3.4 (Sep 2008) to version 3.5 (Jan 2018). I have been looking at replacing PDCurses with Ncurses. Ncurses is actively maintained and improving slowly for Windows. Ncurses development focuses mainly on Unix. The main problem of Ncurses on Windows is screen vibration. This can be solved by using werase() instead of wclear(), but when werase() is used, the screen gets filled with garbage when an East-Asian CJK legacy font is used.

    Source code libintl DLL

    The win32 binaries are packaged with with a patched version of MinGW's libintl DLL that has builtin relocation support. See http://waterlan.home.xs4all.nl/libintl.html

    WCD related links

    Notification of new versions

    Want to be notified whenever a new version of WCD arrives? Send an email to with subject wcd add. Write in the email for which operating system you use wcd. (Your e-mail address will only be used for notification of new versions of wcd. It will not be given to any third party.) You will not get a notification of all beta versions, only when there are important changes in a beta release. To remove your e-mail address from the list send an email with subject wcd remove.

    You can also subscribe to the wcd project page at http://sourceforge.net/projects/wcd/. Beta versions are never notified via SourceForge. New releases are announced at freshcode.club.

    Alternative implementations


    Garbo /pc/dirutil Directory utilities from the old ftp site at garbo.uwasa.fi as run by Professor Timo Salmi in Finland.
    ccd0803a.zip CCD, Coig Change Directory, Jan 18 2001. (Jose Coig). This version is almost identical to the original NCD.
    acd305.zip ACD 3.05 (Sep 1 1999) Another Change Directory (Arjen Merckens)

    Windows 9x/NT

    QCD Quick Change Directory, with a GUI (Steve P. Miller)
    Total Commander A Norton Commander clone, with fast directory changing via a graphical tree. (Shareware)
    Jump-Location A PowerShell implementation of autojump (Tim Kellogg)


    KCD Kriang's Change Directory (Kriang Lerdsuwanakij)
    cdargs (Stefan Kamphausen)
    Apparix (Stijn van Dongen)
    cdq Change Directory Quickly (Jiang Xumin)
    Norton Change Directory (NCD) clones Including some NCD history information.
    autojump (Joël Schaerer and William Ting)
    go2 (David Villa Alises)
    z (Rupa Deadwyler)
    Ibiblio /pub/Linux/utils/shell: kcd, marks, ncd, rcd, wcd, xd
    Ibiblio /pub/Linux/utils/file/managers: ncd


    Erwin Waterlander