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How to Add the “Open command window here” Option Back to the Windows Right-Click Menu

Before the Windows 10 Creators Update, the context menu had an option called Open command window here that was available when you pressed Shift and right-clicked on a folder.

Microsoft wants everyone to use PowerShell instead of the Command Prompt. So, in the Creators Update, they changed the Open command window here option to Open PowerShell window here on the folder context menu. They also changed the Command Prompt options on the Power User Menu (Windows key + X) to PowerShell. But we already showed you how to switch that back.

Today we’ll show you how to add the Open command window here option back to the folder right-click menu and to the right-click menu when you’re in a folder. This doesn’t have to replace the Open PowerShell window here option. You can have both if you want. But you can also hide the PowerShell option if you don’t want it, and we’ll show you how to do that, too.

What You Should Do Before Editing the Registry

To make the changes we talk about here, you must make changes to the registry.

The Registry Editor is a powerful tool that can render your system unstable or even inoperable if misused. This is a fairly simple change and if you follow our instructions, you shouldn’t have any problems. But make sure you back up the Registry and back up your computer before making changes.

You should also make a System Restore point before continuing so, if something goes wrong, you can always roll back.

Add the “Open command window here” Option to the folder context menu

To add the Open command window here option to the context menu that displays when you right-click on a folder, press Windows key + R to open the Run dialog box.

Then, type: regedit into the Open box and click OK.

If the User Account Control dialog box displays, click Yes to continue. You may not see this dialog box, depending on your User Account Control settings.

Open the Registry Editor in Windows 10

Navigate to the following registry key. You can copy the full path below, paste it into the box just under the menu bar, and press Enter to get to the key quickly.

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\cmd

Take ownership of the cmd key and give yourself full control permission.

Select Permissions for a key in the Windows Registry Editor

Make sure the cmd key is selected. Then, right-click on the HideBasedOnVelocityId value on the right and select Rename.

Select Rename for the HideBasedOnVelocityId value in the Windows Registry Editor

Change the name of the HideBasedOnVelocityId value to ShowBasedOnVelocityId and press Enter.

Rename the HideBasedOnVelocityId value to ShowBasedOnVelocityId in the Windows Registry Editor

Close the Registry Editor and restart the Windows Explorer process.

Restart the Windows Explorer process

Now you can Shift + right-click on a folder, not in it, and select Open command window here.

Notice that the Open PowerShell window here option is still there. If you’re not going to use that option, see the next section to hide it.

Open command window here option added to right-click menu in Windows File Explorer

Hide the “Open PowerShell window here” Option

If you want to hide the Open PowerShell window here option, go to the following path in the Registry Editor:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\Powershell

Then, take ownership of the Powershell key and give yourself full control permission

Select Permissions for the Powershell key in the Windows Registry Editor

Right-click on the ShowBasedOnVelocityId value, select Rename, and change the name to HideBasedOnVelocityId.

Close the Registry Editor and restart the Windows Explorer process.

The Open PowerShell window here option is removed from the right-click menu in File Explorer.

Rename ShowBasedOnVelocityId key in Windows Registry Editor

Add the “Open command window here” Option to the Context Menu in an Open Folder

So far, we’ve explained how to add the Open command window here option to the context menu when you Shift + right-click on a folder, but not in a currently open folder.

You can also enable the Open command window here option on the right-click menu in an open folder.

Open the registry editor as we showed you earlier and go to the following key.

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\Background\shell\cmd

Take ownership of the cmd key and give yourself full control permission.

Make sure the cmd key is selected. In a blank area of the right pane, right-click the HideBasedOnVelocityId value, and click Rename.

Then, change the name to ShowBasedOnVelocityId.

Close the Registry Editor and restart the Windows Explorer process.

Rename Background cmd HideBasedOnVelocityId value in the Windows Registry Editor

Now you can be in a folder, Shift + right-click in the right pane of File Explorer, and select Open command window here.

The Open command window here option added to the context menu in a folder in Windows File Explorer

Revert Your Changes

To revert your changes, follow the same instructions listed here, but rename the ShowBasedOnVelocityId or HideBasedOnVelocityId value to the other, depending on whether you’re showing or hiding the context menu option.

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. TonyLe  

    Very cool. Didn’t know that even existed. Thanx dude.

  2. you can also do this from Tools –> folder options –> File types –> (None) Folders –> Advanced –> New. Give action name “command prompt” and action as “cmd.exe”

  3. Jim Shunamon  

    Linked to this page from an article on doing this in Windows 10. Unfortunately I get the message that you can not install on any version of Windows older or newer than XP. Wants me to try compatibility mode, but that has proven to cause problems for me in the past. :-(

  4. Christopher Chiesa  

    “Microsoft wants everyone to use PowerShell instead of the Command Prompt. ”

    *SIGH* Yet another example of high-handed arrogance from the a-holes in Redmond.

    PowerShell is a crappy alternative to (let alone replacement for) the Command Prompt. As a professional software developer of thirty-plus years, I find PowerShell enormously (perhaps unnecessarily) more complex than Command Prompt, to such a ridiculous extent that it pretty much requires an education in computer programming, Computer Science, and Windows programming in particular, just to do simple things. Thank God for the detailed Help — though even that is a bit on the impenetrable side, as far as I’m concerned. I have been toying with it, intermittently, for a couple of years now, and, despite decades of creating intricate software of my own (the vast majority of it via simple text-editing and command-lines — no IDEs! GUIs are cute, but NOT FLEXIBLE) have not yet found simple or straightforward ways to do things, in PowerShell, that were trivial — perhaps even single commands! — at the Command Prompt. (To make matters worse, a lot of the things I want to do seem to have no convenient GUI alternatives in e.g. Windows Explorer.) So, I’m not a fan. At the very least, I would like to have seen MS leave Command Prompt on the system (as they did for a long time) for those who Really Don’t Need the high-falutin’ mechanisms of PowerShell, or whom it Just Plain P*sses Off.

    Now, admittedly, I’m a bit of a Luddite — so my friends tell me — in that I actively reject Microsoft’s “end-of-life entire product lines because we don’t feel like continuing to support them because we want to sell billions of people the “latest and greatest” (ah ha ha hahahahaha! *snrk*) versions of all the same pieces (OS, apps, computers, peripherals) OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN” business model, and therefore number myself among the millions of grudge-bearers who still use long (or VERY long) -out-of-lifed versions of Windows. So I don’t know what improvements (GUI alternatives to each and every Command Prompt command, tool, option, flag, etc.) may have been added in later versions — though I’ve tried the newer versions and find them, if anything, just as much too complicated, and difficult to understand, as PowerShell is when compared to Command Prompt.

    Down with Microsoft.

  5. Chayim  

    Where is “Tools”?

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