Is Command Prompt not working or opening on your Windows 11/10 PC? Here is a complete guide on how to fix the problem of CMD not launching or working properly on your system.
Command Prompt or CMD is a prominent command-line tool in Windows that allows you to execute and perform different commands and tasks. However, if you are unable to open it or if it is not working properly, it can prevent you from performing tasks through CMD. It can be really bothersome and annoying for the users who regularly use Command Prompt. Many users have reported being unable to launch Command Prompt or use it.
This issue can be caused due to different reasons. You might be dealing with some corrupted system files because of which you can’t open or use Command Prompt. It can also be caused due to a recent change on your PC. Some glitches or corruption with your current user profile can be another reason for the issue at hand.
Now, if you are facing the same problem, this post is for you. In this guide, we are going to list down multiple fixes that will help you resolve the issue. So, let us check out!
How do I open Command Prompt in Windows 11?
There are multiple ways to open Command Prompt in Windows 11. You can simply type cmd in the taskbar search box and then open Command Prompt. Besides that, you can also open CMD from File Explorer, Task Manager, and a desktop shortcut.
Command Prompt not working or opening in Windows 11/10
Here are the fixes that you can try if Command Prompt is not opening or working on your Windows 11/10 PC:
- Launch Command Prompt from File Explorer.
- Try opening Command Prompt from Task Manager.
- Edit PATH System Environment Variable for CMD to open.
- Run SFC scan using PowerShell.
- Disable your third-party antivirus.
- Open Command Prompt in Safe Mode.
- Make a new user account.
- Perform a system restore.
Let us discuss the above fixes in detail now!
1] Launch Command Prompt from File Explorer/
If you are unable to open Command Prompt from Start Menu, try launching CMD from File Explorer. You might be able to launch CMD from File Explorer as reported by some affected users. Here are the steps to open CMD from File Explorer:
- Firstly, open File Explorer using Windows + E hotkey.
- Now, navigate to the following location:
- Next, inside the System32 folder, scroll down to the cmd application.
- After that, right-click on cmd and press the Run as administrator option to launch Command Prompt with admin privilege.
See if you are able to open Command Prompt from File Explorer. Alternatively, you can also create a shortcut to the Command Prompt application on your desktop and see if that works for you.
In case Command Prompt still doesn’t open for you, try the next potential fix to resolve the issue.
2] Try opening Command Prompt from Task Manager
You can also try launching Command Prompt from Task Manager and check if it works for you. It is a workaround if you are unable to open CMD from Start Menu. Here are the steps to do that:
- Firstly, start Task Manager using Ctrl + Shift + Esc hotkey.
- Now, go to the File menu and click on the Run new task option.
- Next, in the Open bar, type cmd or cmd.exe.
- After that, enable the Create this task with administrative privileges checkbox present below the Open field.
- Finally, press Enter to launch Command Prompt and see if it works fine or not.
3] Edit PATH System Environment Variable for CMD to open
The next thing you can do to fix the issue is to edit the system environment variable to enable CMD to open. Here is how you can do that:
- Firstly, open the taskbar search and type environ in the search box.
- From the results, click on Edit the system environment variables to launch the System Properties window.
- Now, in the Advanced tab, select the Environment Variables button.
- Next, choose the PATH variable and then tap on the Edit button.
- After that, click on the New button to create a new entry.
- Then, enter C:\Windows\SysWow64\ and press OK.
- Finally, reboot your PC and then see if you are able to launch and use CMD properly or not.
If the problem persists, try the next potential fix to resolve the issue.
4] Run SFC scan using PowerShell
There are chances that you are unable to use Command Prompt due to corrupted or broken system files. So, if the scenario is applicable, you should be able to fix the issue by performing an SFC scan.
SFC or System File Checker is a command-based tool that comes with Windows. This built-in tool basically scans and repairs corrupted system files. However, as you are unable to open Command Prompt, you will have to use Powershell to run the SFC scan. Here is how to run an SFC scan using Powershell on Windows PC:
- Firstly, launch Powershell with administrator privilege.
- Next, write the following command in an elevated Powershell:
- Now, simply hit the Enter button to run the above SFC scan command. It might take about 15-20 minutes for the scan to fix corrupted system files, so let the command finish successfully.
- Once done, restart your PC and then launch Command Prompt. Hopefully, it will open and work normally now.
In case you still get the same issue, try the next potential fix to resolve it.
5] Disable your third-party antivirus
If you are using a third-party antivirus, try disabling it for some time and then see if you are able to launch Command Prompt or not. Third-party antiviruses are known to interrupt the normal working of your applications. Hence, it is recommended to turn off your antivirus and then see if the issue is resolved. In case CMD still doesn’t open or work, try the next potential fix to resolve the issue.
6] Open Command Prompt in Safe Mode
You can also try booting your Windows PC in safe mode and then launch Command Prompt. It is a workaround and might work for you.
7] Make a new user account
The problem might be caused if there is some issue with your User Account or your user profile is corrupted. Hence, if the scenario is applicable, you can try creating a new user account and then check if the problem is fixed or not.
Here are the steps to create a new user account on Windows 11/10:
- Firstly, open Settings using Win+I and then go to the Accounts tab.
- Now, click on the Family & other users option.
- Next, press the Add account button and on the next prompt, enter the email address for the new account.
- After that, press the Next button and then complete the prompted instructions and information to create a new user account.
- Finally, log out of your current account and then sign in with the newly created account.
Try opening Command Prompt on your new user account and see if the problem is fixed or not.
8] Perform a system restore
If none of the above solutions worked for you, try performing a system restore. There might be some recent changes due to which CMD is not working properly on your PC. In that case, System Restore enables you to roll back your PC to a point where your system wasn’t affected by corruption and the Command Prompt was working fine. So, perform a system restore using the below steps:
- Firstly, open the desktop search box and enter Create a Restore Point in the box.
- Now, click on the Create a Restore Point option from the results to open the System Restore window.
- Next, press the System Restore button and then choose a system restore point to which you want to roll back your PC.
- After that, follow the onscreen instructions to complete the process.
- Finally, reboot your PC and then try launching Command Prompt.
Hopefully, CMD will start working fine now.
Why is Command Prompt not opening?
The issue of Command Prompt not opening or working properly can be a result of corrupted system files on your PC. If there are damaged or broken system files on your PC, it can prevent CMD from opening or working normally. Hence, to fix the issue, you can try performing an SFC scan using Windows Powershell. It will repair the corrupted system files and enable Command Prompt to open properly.
What to do if Command Prompt is not opening in Windows 10?
If Command Prompt is not opening on your Windows PC, you can try alternative ways to launch CMD. You can try launching Command Prompt from File Explorer or Task Manager. If that doesn’t work, you can try running a System File Checker (SFC) scan to fix the corrupted system files and make CMD work. We have discussed some more fixes to resolve the issue that you can check out below in this post.