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Run...

Command
Basic Run Command Information
It is accessible in one of two ways: through the start menu (Figure 1) and through the shortcut key Win+R. The dialog itself looks very unassuming, and quite user unfriendly if you ask me (Figure 2). Its main purpose, as you can see from the dialog information, is to open a program, folder, document, or Internet resource which Windows will then open.

Figure 1 - Run on the Start Menu

Figure 2 - The Run Dialog

Common Tasks with Run


Below are a list of commands you can type into the Run dialog: Run Calculator Run Command Prompt Run Firefox (if installed) Run Internet Explorer Run Microsoft Word (if installed) Run Microsoft Excel (if installed) Run Microsoft Outlook (if installed) Run Notepad Run Wordpad Open Control Panel Open Program Files folder Shutdown Windows Restart Windows Log Off Windows Registry Editor Task Manager Windows Update Launches calc cmd firefox iexplore winword excel outlook notepad wordpad control panel %programfiles% shutdown shutdown -r logoff regedit taskmgr wupdmgr

Creating Your Own Run Commands


If you are like me, you will use a few programs very frequently. One way to make them start faster is to give them their own Run command: 1. Win+R to open the Run dialog 2. Enter %windir% to open the Windows directory 3. Alt+F W S to open the File menu, choose the New menu item, then the Shortcut menu item 4. Go through the wizard to create a shortcut to the desired program 5. The name you give the shortcut is what you type in the Run dialog to start the program

Infrequently Used Run Commands


Below are a list of commands you can type into the Run dialog, split into several categories: programs, control panels, computer administration tools, and special folders.

Programs
Character Map Check Disk Utility Clipboard Viewer Free Cell Hearts Card Microsoft Chat Minesweeper On Screen Keyboard Remote Desktop Spider Solitare Telnet Client Windows Magnifier charmap chkdsk clipbrd freecell mshearts winchat winmine osk mstsc spider telnet magnify

Control Panels
Accessibility Controls Add Hardware Wizard Add/Remove Programs Administrative Tools Automatic Updates Date and Time Display Properties Folders Properties Fonts Fonts Folder Game Controllers Internet Properties Keyboard Properties Mouse Properties Network Connections Network Setup Wizard ODBC Data Source Administrator Password Properties Phone and Modem Options Power Configuration Printers and Faxes Printers Folder access.cpl hdwwiz.cpl appwiz.cpl control admintools wuaucpl.cpl timedate.cpl desk.cpl control folders control fonts fonts joy.cpl inetcpl.cpl control keyboard control mouse control netconnections netsetup.cpl odbccp32.cpl password.cpl telephon.cpl powercfg.cpl control printers printers

Regional Settings Scanners and Cameras Security Center Sounds and Audio User Account Management Windows Firewall

intl.cpl sticpl.cpl wscui.cpl mmsys.cpl nusrmgr.cpl firewall.cpl

Computer Administration Tools


Computer Management Device Manager Disk Cleanup Utility Disk Defragment Disk Management Disk Partition Manager Dr. Watson System Troubleshooting Driver Verifier Utility Event Viewer Group Policy Editor (XP Prof) Local Security Settings Local Users and Groups Performance Monitor Resultant Set of Policy Scheduled Tasks Services Shared Folders System Configuration Editor System Configuration Utility Utility Manager Windows System Security Tool compmgmt.msc devmgmt.msc cleanmgr dfrg.msc diskmgmt.msc diskpart drwtsn32 verifier eventvwr.msc gpedit.msc secpol.msc lusrmgr.msc perfmon rsop.msc control schedtasks services.msc fsmgmt.msc sysedit msconfig utilman syskey

Computer Administration Tools


Application Data Folder Home Directory Drive Home Directory Shared Home Directory Temporary Folder Windows Root Drive %appdata% %homedrive% %homepath% %homeshare% %temp% %systemdrive%

Windows Root Directory

%windir%

For an even more exhaustive list, check out 156 Useful Run Commands.

Using Run as a Command Prompt


One of the strengths of the Run command is its ability to do almost everything the command line can do. You should note, however, that if you're running a program that outputs something and exits, that the output will only show up for a few seconds and then disappear. Take the ipconfig command for example. If you were to type that into Run, it would open a command prompt, run the ipconfig command, and then close because the command finished running! To fix this, type cmd into the Run dialog, and then type ipconfig into the command prompt.