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Jun 4 2007   9:12AM GMT

XP and Vista Run Commands – Cheatsheet

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse

Today’s discovery?  Actually, it’s a RE-discovery. Run commands.

Somewhere between Windows 3.1 and XP, I stopped using Run commands. I think I began to associate them with troubleshooting.

The help desk guy asked me to “click Start/then Run,” and a little shiver of fear ran up my spine.

When he asked me to type “regedit,” I knew I was toast. Might as well hang up and order a new hard drive.

For those of you who’ve never used Run commands, click the Start button. In Windows XP, Run is right above Shut Down. If you’re using Vista, you can call it up by using the keyboard shortcut Win + R.

The blue box that pops up when you click Start/Run, and the black and white box that pops up when you type “cmd” in the Run box, are two views of the same thing. The blue Run box just keeps people from going into a coma when they see the DOS prompt.

Run commands are very handy. You’re not tinkering under the hood where you don’t belong.  Microsoft WANTS you to use them.

They even put a friendly little message on the window: “Type the name of a program, folder, document, or Internet resource, and Windows will open it for you.”

It’s like there’s a butler ready and waiting.

Try clicking “start/Run” and then typing in c-a-l-c.

Isn’t that easier than hunting through your desk trying find a calculator when you’re on the phone? Sure you can find it through the program menu, but having Windows deliver it right to you is a lot easier, isn’t it?

How about typing n-o-t-e-p-a-d ? There you go!

Here’s a few more everyday Run command shortcuts for you to try:

winword    – launches Word
powerpnt  – launches PowerPoint
excel          – launches Excel
control       – opens control panel
explore      – open Windows Explorer
…               – opens My Computer
spider       – opens solitaire
winver       – tells you what version of Windows you’re running

Welcome back Run!  We’ve got a cheatsheet with over 100 things Run can do for you.

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