You Can Have Fun with the Run Box
This tip was written for Windows 10 and/or Windows 11. Have fun!
We call a Run command a Run box – because we’re not geeks. And most of you know that you can open a Run box by pressing the Windows Key + R. But did you know that when you open a Run box, you open up a world of commands. And just seriously complex commands made for geeky people. Many are for normal folks like you and me… and the ones we’re going to show you may come in handy.
Moving right along…
Did you know that you can open programs or web pages from a Run command? You can open folders and run Windows commands as well. The Run command is not just for geeks in dirty sweatpants sitting around in dank, musty basements surrounded by computer screens, and billows of e-cigarette smoke. The Run command works for ordinary folks too — and we are going to prove it to you.
Use the Windows Key+R keyboard shortcut to open a Run box. Type the name of a program in the Run box and press Enter. For instance, try typing Chrome and then tap the Enter key. If Chrome is installed, it will open. You can try other programs too, but keep in mind, If the program does not open, some programs require you to be a geek and type in file path too.
But we’re not geeks so we’re going to show you some applications you can open from a Run box for which you don’t need no stinkin’ file paths.
Enough bloviating! Let’s try some Run box magic right now. Press & hold down the Windows Key and tap the R key. The Run dialog will open. Now enter any of the following in the Run box and press Enter:
RSTRUI.exe (System Restore)
MSPaint (Microsoft Paint)
MSCONFIG (Configuration utility)
SERVICES.MSC (Windows Services)
WRITE (Opens WordPad)
Chrome (if Chrome is installed)
Firefox (if Firefox is installed)
MSEdge (Opens Edge)
Thunderbird (if Thunderbird is installed)
Winver (displays your current Windows version)
Taskmgr (opens Task Manager)
Calc (opens the Windows Calculator)
Documents (opens your Documents folder)
Downloads (opens your default Downloads folder)
Music (opens your default Music folder)
Videos (opens your Videos folder)
Explorer (opens File Explorer)
Shutdown /R (restarts your computer)
Shutdown (shuts down your computer)
Control (opens Control Panel)
OSK (opens the On Screen Keyboard)
Appwiz Ctrl (opens Control Panel’s change or remove programs)
Control Desktop (Opens Personalization settings)
Control Printers (Opens Settings > Bluetooth & devices)
System32 (Opens Windows/System 32 folder)
%userprofile% (Opens your user folder)
compmgmt.msc (Opens Computer management)
Netplwiz (Opens User Account advanced configuration)
Utilman (Opens Settings > Accessibilty)
And remember, you can also enter a URL (Web page address) directly into a Run Command and open any webpage in your default browser.
There are tons of other commands too, but woe is me, I’m tired of trying to think of them! The list above should be plenty to get you started.