How to Open Command Prompt in Windows 10?

Various ways to open Command Prompt in Windows 10 

Command prompt, a command line interpreter application also known as cmd.exe or cmd, is available in most Windows Operating Systems. It is used to execute up to 300 available commands. To use this application, you simply type in the commands or instructions you want and press Enter. It is often used to perform administrative functions, troubleshoot, and solve technical Windows issues. The commands are used to perform certain tasks from the command line rather than the more popular graphical interface (GUI). It is a powerful tool that allows you to do virtually anything that is possible via the GUI, but using text commands. You can move, delete, copy files, create folders, or launch any application. There are some tools that cannot be accessed using the GUI, but are available through Command Prompt. In this article, we show various ways to open the Command Prompt in Windows 10 (these methods also apply to Windows 8 and 7).

How to open command prompt in Windows 10

Table of Contents:

Open Command Prompt from Start Icon

Right-click on the start icon and select "Command Prompt". If do not see Command Prompt in the list, then it may be called "Windows PowerShell" rather than Command Prompt (this is due to the Creators Update for Windows 10). Nevertheless, you can use PowerShell, which is pretty much the same. If you still prefer to use Command Prompt, you can use other methods (mentioned below) to access it.

open command prompt using start (Windows 10)

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Open Command Prompt from Search in Start Menu

Open Command Prompt by clicking Start and then typing "cmd" or "command prompt"  in the Search box. The Command Prompt application will appear - click it and Windows will open it for you.

open command prompt start menu search step 1

If you want to open Command Prompt with administrative privileges, just right-click on the result and select "Run as Administrator".

open command prompt from start search step 2

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Open Command Prompt by Scrolling Through Start Menu Applications

Click the Start Menu and then scroll down through the application until you find the "Windows System" folder. Click the down arrow to expand folder content and click Command Prompt.
open command prompt scrolling start menu step1

If you want to open Command Prompt with administrative privileges, just right-click the Command Prompt icon, click "More" and then click "Run as Administrator".

open command prompt scrolling start menu step 2

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Open Command Prompt from Task Manager

First, open Task Manager. Right click the taskbar and select "Task Manager".

open command prompt from task manager step 1

When the Task Manager window appears, click "More details". Then click "File" and "Run new task".

open command prompt from task manager step 2

A new dialogue box will appear. Simply type in "cmd" and click "Ok" or Enter on your keyboard. This will direct you to the Command Prompt application. Alternatively, perform the same actions without typing anything. This time, select "Run new task" whilst pressing the "Ctrl" key on your keyboard. This will get you to the Command Prompt window directly.

open command prompt from task manager step 3

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Open Command Prompt from the "Run"

To open "Run" dialog box, press Windows+R keys on your keyboard. Then type "cmd" and click "Ok" or press Enter on your keyboard.

open command prompt from run step 1

Alternatively, access the "Run" dialog box by typing "run" in Search and selecting it from the results. Then, follow the same steps as mentioned previously.

open command prompt from run step 2

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Open Command Prompt from Created Shortcut on your Desktop

You can make a shortcut, which you can use from your Desktop or any other directory on your Windows system to access Command Prompt. To create a shortcut, right-click any free space on your Desktop and choose "New", then "Shortcut".

open command prompt from created shortcut step 1

In the new window, type "cmd.exe" and click "Next".

open command prompt from created shortcut step 2

Name your shortcut and click "Finish". Now you will have a Command Prompt shortcut on your Desktop.
open command prompt from created shortcut step 3

If you want to always open Command Prompt with administrator privileges, right-click on your created shortcut and select "Properties". When Properties window is open, make sure you are on the "Shortcut" tab, and then click "Advanced..." and check the "Run as administrator" box. Your Command Prompt shortcut will now always be opened with administrator privileges.

open command prompt from created shortcut step 4

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Open Command Prompt from File Explorer

Open "File Explorer" (usually, will not find its icon on your taskbar). You need to navigate to "Local Disk (C:)", and then "Windows" and "System32". In this folder look for the "cmd.exe" application.

open command prompt from file explorer step 1

Double-click to open or right-click to open with administrative privileges by selecting "Run as administrator".

open command prompt from file explorer step 2

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Open Command Prompt from File Explorer's Address Bar

Open File Explorer and simply type "cmd" into the address bar and press Enter on your keyboard.

open command prompt from file explorer address bar step 1

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Video showing how to open Command Prompt in various ways (Windows 10):

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter to stay informed about the latest tech news or online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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