Types of system scripting languages

Here is a scoop if you ever wanted to be a programmer. Scripting is a kind of programming. Scripting is a type of programming language that is optimised for you to write some good scripts. So, there is no one universal language for scripting, rather a bunch of scripting language is out there which can help you write your script. Then again, the purpose of each of these language is different based on your scenario and requirement. So let’s look at the variant of scripting.

Shell scripting languages

Here you will find the major shell scripting languages used by popular systems.

Batch file

This is the shell scripting language that has been used since the good old days of command line navigation, made for command shell for both Windows and DOS. The file extension for this is .bat.


This is one of the magnificent shell scripting that is primarily used on modern Windows to write any automation from scratch that has a vast and powerful feature. This is the most up-to-date and advanced version of the batch file.

UNIX shell script

For UNIX operating systems like mac and Linux, according to the convention , the first line of the UNIX shell script file specifies the shell that should execute the script and therefore, which shell scripting language is used. These files typically have a .sh extension but they are regarded as not necessary.

General programming scripting languages

These first three mentioned above are purely shell scripting languages. They are primarily used for shell. Now let’s look at other types of scripting languages with a broader functionality.


This is one of the flexible language with very simply laid out syntax. You can do lot with Python, from writing a simple script to a whooping large scale applications, anything. The extension is .py.


JavaScript was primarily developed for web browsers in the 1990s to make the web pages dynamic and more interactive. Now, you can use JavaScript to write command line programme to large and complex applications including server side code. The extension for this is .js.

Visual Basic Script

Visual Basic Script is now a legacy scripting language that was built to write for Windows and Microsoft applications. We still see some this archaic script some old places but this is totally replaced by powerShell.

Note that with the native scripting language like the first three mentioned above, they are primarily used for shell scripting. Hence, you will find lot of normal commands that you use there as part of language. You can utilise them to your max. Yet, the same is not true for general purpose languages like the latter mentioned here.