6 ways to open the Run command window in Windows

The Run command window allows you to launch programs, open files and folders, and access internet resources in Windows. Just type a path or a quick command into the Windows Run box, and then click OK or press Enter to use a Run command. Although the Run shortcut is not as easy to find in recent Windows versions, the tool still exists, and there are plenty of ways to access it. This tutorial illustrates how to open Run in Windows 10 and Windows 7:

1. Open the Run command window with a keyboard shortcut

The fastest way to access the Run command window is to use the keyboard shortcut Windows + R. On top of being very easy to remember, this method is universal for all versions of Windows. Hold down the Windows key and then press R on your keyboard.

Simultaneously press the Windows and R keys

The Run window is immediately displayed in the lower-left corner of the screen.

The Run window is displayed by default on the bottom-left

2. Use Search to open the Run command window

As always in Windows, Search is a great idea to find just about anything. If you are using Windows 10, first type the word "run" inside the Search bar.

Then, click or tap on the relevant search result or press Open from the pane on the right.

Access the Run window from the Search bar in Windows 10

In Windows 7, click the Start button and type the word "run" in the Start Menu Search box. Then, click the appropriate result to launch the Run command window.

Access the Run window from the Start Menu's Search box in Windows 7

3. Open the Run command window from the Start Menu

The Start Menu is a reliable way to access features on your Windows computer or device, including the Run window. In Windows 10, access the Start Menu by clicking or tapping on the Windows logo in the lower-left corner or by pressing the Windows button on your keyboard. Then, scroll down to the letter W, open the Windows System folder, and press Run.

Open Run from the Start Menu in Windows 10

In Windows 7, open the Start Menu and then access "All Programs -> Accessories -> Run" to launch the window.

Open Run from the Start Menu in Windows 7

Alternatively, you can also customize your Windows 7 Start Menu to permanently display a Run shortcut in the right-hand pane. To learn how to do that, read The complete guide to the Windows 7 Start Menu.

4. Use the Command Prompt (CMD) to open the Run window

Some of my colleagues love the CMD, so we decided to put this in for other fans, even if it's not as easy to remember as the other ways illustrated in this article. To open the Windows Run, you can also launch the Command Prompt and enter the following:

explorer.exe Shell:::{2559a1f3-21d7-11d4-bdaf-00c04f60b9f0}

Insert the command in CMD and press Enter

This method works both in Windows 10 and Windows 7.

5. Open the Run command window with PowerShell

Wondering how to open Run from PowerShell in Windows 10 and Windows 7? First, start PowerShell. Then, copy/paste or type in the following command:

(New-Object -ComObject "Shell.Application").FileRun()

Enter the command in PowerShell

Press Enter on your keyboard, and the Run command window is immediately opened in the bottom-left corner.

6. Use the WinX power user menu to open the Run window in Windows 10

Windows 10 has a hidden power user menu that includes a shortcut for the Run command window. There are many ways to access this menu, the easiest being to use the Windows + X keyboard shortcut. Then, click or tap on Run or press R on your keyboard to open the Run box in Windows 10.

Open the WinX menu and access Run

If the WinX power user menu interests you, you can learn more by reading: What is the WinX menu and how to open it.

What do you want to access using the Run window?

The Run command window was first introduced by Microsoft in Windows 95 and has been with us ever since. Some of us access it pretty often, but plenty of people don't realize its potential and usefulness yet. We're happy this feature caught your eye, but we are curious what brought you here. Are you looking for new ways to open the Windows Run command window or are you trying something new on your computer? Let us know in the comments.