How to Open the Command Prompt as Administrator in Windows 8 or 10

By Walter Glenn on August 1st, 2014

Much of the time, opening the Command Prompt as a regular user is all you need. Sometimes, though, you’ll need to open the Command Prompt as an administrator so that you can run commands that require administrative privileges.

Windows offers a lot of different ways to open the Command Prompt, and with a lot of those methods you can also open the Command Prompt with admin privileges. We’ve shown you previously how to do this in Windows 7 and Vista, so here we’re going to focus on three quick ways you can open the Command Prompt with admin privileges in Windows 8 and 10.

Option One: Use the Power Users (Windows+X) Menu

Both Windows 8 and 10 offer a Power Users menu that you can access by pressing Windows+X or just right-clicking the Start button. On the Power Users menu, choose “Command Prompt (Admin).”

Note: If you see PowerShell instead of Command Prompt on the Power Users menu, that’s a switch that came about with the Creators Update for Windows 10. It’s very easy to switch back to showing the Command Prompt on the Power Users menu if you want, or you can give PowerShell a try. You can do pretty much everything in PowerShell that you can do in Command Prompt, plus a lot of other useful things.

When you launch the Command Prompt with admin privileges, you’ll likely see a “User Account Control” window asking for permission to continue. Go ahead and click “Yes.”

Once you’ve got the “Administrator: Command Prompt” window open, you can run any command, whether it requires administrative privileges or not.

Option Two: Use the Start Menu

You can also open an administrative Command Prompt using just the Start menu (or Start screen in Windows 8). Hit Start, type “command,” and you’ll see “Command Prompt” listed as the main result. Right-click that result and choose “Run as administrator.”

Option Three: Use the Run Box

If you’re used to using the “Run” box to open apps, you can use that to launch Command Prompt with admin privileges. Press Windows+R to open the “Run” box. Type “cmd” into the box and then press Ctrl+Shift+Enter to run the command as an administrator.

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And with that, you have three very easy ways to run commands in the Command Prompt window as administrator.

Walter Glenn is a long time computer geek and tech writer. Though he's mostly a Windows and gadget guy, he has a fondness for anything tech. You can follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

  • Published 08/1/14
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