Complete Guide To Run Commands

Run program helps you access and open your programs, files and folders immediately without getting into the mess of Go to this- > that -> then -> etc. Type in the destination address and Run program will take you there. In previous versions of Windows (Windows Xp, Windows 2000, Windows 98 ) , a quick access to Run program was provided by including it in the ‘Start Menu’. However, in windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8 there is no direct access to the ‘Run’ program.

In Windows Vista and Windows 7, the Start search will act as Run dialog box while Windows 8 includes a separate search (WindowsKey + Q) feature.

You may also like: 15 unique and useful Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts

Start Search in Windows 7

4 Ways To Access The Run Command With Ease

If you are used to using the Run command frequently, you can open the Run command using the following methods:

1- Keyboard Shortcut

Open the Run program using a simple keyboard shortcut that is quite easy to memorize.

Windows key + R

2- Add Run Command to Start Menu

If you are using Windows Vista or Windows 7, you can bring back the Run command in the Start menu by following the steps below:

  1. Go to Start Menu
  2. Right click on the empty space
  3. Select Properties. Task Bar and Start Menu Properties window will be opened
  4. Select ‘Start Menu’ tab –> Customize
  5. Scroll down to select Run command. Check the box and select ‘ OK’

Enable Run in the Start Menu

Run Command should appear in the Start menu now.

Run in Start Menu

3- Create a shortcut on the Desktop

Once you have successfully pinned Run command into Start Menu, you can create shortcuts from it in the same manner as you can with other programs. Open Start Menu -> Drag Run Command -> Drop onto the Desktop. A shortcut is created on the Desktop. Right click on the icon enables you to modify its properties.

Run shortcut on the Desktop

In Windows 8, you will need to go to the following location in order to copy the Run command shortcut to the Desktop:

C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\System Tools

You will need to change the username with your Windows username.

4- Add Run Command into Quick Launch

Quick Launch Toolbar is not included in Window 7. Instead, you can pin your programs to the taskbar to access them quickly. You can not pin ‘Run’ program to taskbar as Windows 7 does not allow it. However, if you are using Windows XP or older, you can drag and drop Run command into the quick launch toolbar for one click access.

In Windows 8, you can open the quick admin menu and select Run.

Open a particular location through Run

You can open files, folders or programs using the run command directly by defining the path. You may click on the drop down menu that contains the paths of recently opened files and programs. You can also define a new path using the following syntax:

<Directory Name> :\ <Root Folder>\ <Parent Folder> \<Child Folder >

For example, the following command in the Run dialog will open the fyp folder which resides on Desktop.


Open a web address using Run command

Use the run command to open the web site for you. It does not require any special syntax. Type in the URL in the Run command. (For example, Click ‘OK’ and website will be opened in your default browser. If you want to open the URL in a particular browser, just write the name of the browser first and then the URL in the Run command field. This will open the URL in that particular browser. For example, if I want to open in Google Chrome, I will write the following:


Opening the same in Opera will result in:


Clear Run Command History

Clearing Run history is simple. Go to Start Menu-> Right Click to open Properties Start Menu tab -> Privacy -> Un-check the ‘Store and display a list of recently opened programs’ Your Run command history is removed.Now, you won’t find any recently opened file or program in the drop down list.

Remove Run history

You can also use programs like CCleaner to clear the history of Run command along with other cleaning options.

If you want to go more advanced and remove selective entries from the Run history, you will need to go to the following registry key and delete entries from the right hand pane:


We hope that you have found today’s article informative and delicious.