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When you open File Explorer on Windows 11, it opens with standard privileges by default. However, you may sometimes find yourself needing to run it with elevated privileges to perform certain tasks with admin rights.

Open File Explorer With Admin Rights Using the EXE File

To open File Explorer with admin rights using its .exe file, you’ll need to first open File Explorer normally. You can do this by pressing the Windows+E keyboard shortcut, or by clicking the File Explorer icon in the taskbar. Is it missing from your taskbar? Learn how to pin File Explorer to the Windows 11 taskbar.

Open File Explorer.

Next, locate File Explorer’s EXE file in the “This PC > Windows (C:) > Windows” file path. Right-click the File Explorer app and then select “Run as Administrator” in the context menu.

Run File Explorer as an Admin.

A new instance of File Explorer will open with administrative privileges.

RELATED: What Does "Run as Administrator" Mean in Windows 10?

Open File Explorer With Admin Rights Using the Task Manager

You can also open File Explorer with admin rights using Task Manager. Open Task Manager by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Escape on your keyboard. Once open, click “More Details” at the bottom of the window.

Task Manager will expand, displaying various information about currently-running apps. Click the “File” tab in the menu bar, and then click “Run New Task” in the drop-down menu that appears.

Run a new task.

The Create New Task window will appear. Type “explorer.exe” in the text box next to Open, check the box next to “Create this task with administrative privileges,” and then click “OK.”

Open File Explorer as an admin.

File Explorer will then open with admin privileges.

With File Explorer running with elevated privileges, you can now search for whichever app or file you want to access. Be sure the file or folder you’re looking for isn’t hidden, though.

RELATED: How to Show Hidden Files on Windows 11

Profile Photo for Marshall Gunnell Marshall Gunnell
Marshall is a writer with experience in the data storage industry. He worked at Synology, and most recently as CMO and technical staff writer at StorageReview. He's currently an API/Software Technical Writer based in Tokyo, Japan, runs VGKAMI and ITEnterpriser, and spends what little free time he has learning Japanese.
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