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How To Open an Elevated Command Prompt in Windows 7

Run the Command Prompt as an Administrator in Windows 7


Elevated Command Prompt in Windows 7

Elevated Command Prompt (Windows 7)

An elevated Command Prompt is required before executing certain commands in Windows 7. The sfc command comes to mind, as does manage-bde, reagentc, and a few other Windows 7 commands.

Opening an elevated Command Prompt in Windows 7 simply means opening Command Prompt as an administrator. In other words, opening the Command Prompt program (cmd.exe) with administrator level privileges.

Still confused? Don't worry, the process itself is very easy. See below for detailed instructions on opening an elevated Command Prompt in Windows 7:

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: Opening an elevated Command Prompt in Windows 7 only takes a few seconds

Here's How:

  1. Click on the Start button and in the Search programs and files box that appears directly above the Start button, type the following:


    Don't press Enter, just let the search results populate above.

    Note: If you have trouble doing this, or the next step, you can find the Command Prompt shortcut manually by clicking Start -> All Programs -> Accessories on most computers. Then skip to Step 3 below.

  2. In the search results, locate the Programs section.

    Under Programs you'll see one or more programs listed that contain the word command.

  3. Locate the Command Prompt shortcut and right-click on it.

    This will bring up Command Prompt's right-click menu. Depending on the software you have installed, and how you have certain Windows 7 settings configured, you could have as few as a dozen, or as many as a few dozen, options.

  4. Click on Run as administrator.

  5. Click Yes on the User Account Control window that appears.

    Important: If you are see a User Account Control window but also a message that says To continue, type an administrator password, and then click Yes, then your user account must be a standard account, not an administrator account. Before you can click Yes and open an elevated command prompt, you'll need to type the password of another user on your Windows 7 computer that has administrator level privileges.

    Note: You will not see this window at all if your User Account Control settings are turned all the way down. See How To Disable User Account Control in Windows 7 for more information.

  6. An elevated Command Prompt window will appear. You can now execute any Windows 7 command you want, without restriction.

    Note: An elevated Command Prompt window opens to C:\Windows\system32. A non-elevated Command Prompt window instead opens to C:\Users\[username].


  1. Aside from noting the path that opens (see the Note in Step 6), you can tell if the Command Prompt is elevated by looking at the title of the window:

    If the title says Administrator: Command Prompt then you've succeeded in opening an elevated Command Prompt. If the title says Command Prompt only, then something happened and you're using Command Prompt normally.

  2. Not a Windows 7 user? See How Do I Open an Elevated Command Prompt? for links to steps specific for your operating system.

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