The Run command window allows you to start programs, open files and folders, and access internet resources in all Windows versions. Type a path, a quick command, or environment variable into Windows’ Run, and then click OK or press Enter, and you execute a Run command. Although the Run shortcut is not as easy to find in modern Windows versions, the tool still exists and is as useful as ever. Here are all the ways to open Run in Windows 10 and Windows 11:
The quickest way to access the Run command window is to use this keyboard shortcut: Windows + R. Simply hold down the Windows key and press R on your keyboard.
On top of being very easy to remember, this method works in all versions of Windows, from the dated Windows 7 to the newer Windows 10 and the latest Windows 11. The Run window is immediately displayed in the lower-left corner of the desktop.
The moment you press Enter, you see the Run command window pop up on your screen.
IMPORTANT: This method doesn’t work in PowerShell. Using it there opens File Explorer instead of the Run window.
Feel free to copy and paste it for faster execution.
Pressing Enter on your keyboard immediately opens the Run command window.
Windows 10 and Windows 11 have a hidden menu called WinX or the Power User/Quick Access menu, which includes a shortcut for the Run command window. To open Run from this menu, do the following: right-click (or press and hold) the Windows logo on the taskbar. In the menu that opens, choose Run.
If you’re a fan of keyboard shortcuts, you can also press Windows + X, followed by R, to achieve the same result. But that’s still slower than pressing Windows + R, isn’t it?
Search is always a great tool when you want to find and open just about anything in Windows. If you’re using Windows 10, type the word run inside the Search bar and then press Enter or click or tap the Run search result.
If you’re using Windows 11, click or tap the Search icon on the taskbar and type the word run. Then, click or tap the Run search result.
TIP: Here’s how to use Search in Windows 11.
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 of your desktop or by pressing the Windows key on your keyboard. Then, scroll down the list of apps to the letter W, open the Windows System folder, and click or tap Run.
In Windows 11, things are a little different: first, click or tap the Windows icon on the taskbar to open the Start Menu or press the Windows key on your keyboard. Next, click or tap All apps, and scroll down to Windows Tools. Click or tap on this shortcut.
This opens the Windows Tools window, where you can see lots of shortcuts. Scroll until you find Run, and then double-click or double-tap on it.
You can also create a Run shortcut and place it on the desktop or elsewhere. First, right-click or press-and-hold on an empty space on your desktop, and choose New > Shortcut.
In the Create Shortcut wizard, copy and paste this command as the location:
Then, press Next and name your shortcut Run.
The shortcut is created on the Windows desktop, but you are free to move it somewhere else. Double-click or double-tap on it to open the Run window.
TIP: For more information, here’s how to create shortcuts for files, folders, apps, and web pages in Windows.
If you’re using File Explorer to browse your files and folders, you can open Run from its address bar at the top. Simply copy and paste this command into it, and then press Enter:
The Run command window is then shown in the bottom-left corner of your screen.
Microsoft introduced the Run command window in Windows 95, and it’s been with us ever since. Some people use Run pretty often, but many don't realize its potential and usefulness yet. Hopefully, Microsoft won’t retire it completely in a later Windows 11 update. We’ll see what happens. Meanwhile, comment below and tell us how you use the Run window: what are your favorite Run commands?