Opening Command Prompt Windows from Explorer

Tested on: Windows 7 Ultimate

Command Prompt windows are infinitely useful - indeed, for myself at least, Windows would be severely restricted without them. However, navigating the current directory within a Command Prompt to a convenient location, can be a cumbersome task, especially if the target directory is many levels deep within your folder structure. Although there have been registry hacks for earlier Windows versions that have provided the ability to open a Command Prompt at the current Windows Explorer location, this feature is now standard within Windows 7, albeit via a hidden menu option.

To open a Command Prompt in your current Windows Explorer folder, hold down Shift and then right-click an empty area within the window, away from any files that might be present in the folder (I usually click beneath the list of existing files). A context menu similar to the following will be displayed:

Opening a command prompt

Choose Open command window here - a new Command Prompt window will be opened, located conveniently within your current Explorer folder:

The command prompt window

You can also open a Command Prompt directly into a sub-folder without having to navigate into the folder beforehand, by right-clicking directly on the target sub-folder and following the procedure above.

Since the majority of Windows' Open/Save dialog boxes themselves are also Explorer windows in disguise, you can often open a Command Prompt directly from within these dialogs by shift-right-clicking an empty area and again, choosing Open command window here as described above.


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