Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Open a Command Window in Vista

LifeHacker today mentioned a posting by HowToGeek that's a nice time-saver if you need to open a Command window in Vista: find the directory you want the Command window to start in using Windows Explorer, then Shift-right-click and choose Open Command Window Here from the shortcut menu. I don't use a Command window often, but when I do, I usually get annoyed at having to type long paths, complete with quotes, in CD commands, so this definitely goes on the "Vista Tips" list (along with another favorite: Ctrl-Shift-Esc to quickly launch the Task Manager).


Anonymous said...

Why would you even try to type a long path? At least for me typing means making mistakes whether that's variable names or path names. The way you do it in any command prompt since Windows 2000 is to type the first (few) characters and then press TAB. Works for directory names and file names anywhere in a command. If you type immediately after a closing quotation mark, Windows is smart enough to move the new file name into the quotation mark.

And now to something completely different... The way to open the temporary directory in Explorer is to type %temp% into the address box. Work in any version of windows, no matter where Microsoft moved the temp directory in that particular version.

Doug Hennig said...

Thanks, Christof. I knew there was a way to get auto-complete on path names but forgot it was the Tab key that triggered it. Shows how much I use the Command window!

Anonymous said...


For all of those still on Windows XP, you can add this feature to the shell by installing the MS Command Prompt Here powertoy...

Or you can actually do it with a simple registry edit: See method 5.

For those of us that do live in the command prompt there is the awesome Console2 open source app. This app allows you to have multiple command prompts opened in a tabbed window. Each tag can have its own environment. Each tag can even have different shell so if you like to use powershell or cygwin this is very nice. You can find Console2 here... Then you can add "Open Console Here" prompt to your right click menu using similar methods to above.

XP is dead, long live XP.


Anonymous said...

Just a Right-Click seems to work fine for me, which is better since I have trouble remembering more complex short cuts!

Rick Bean