This wikiHow teaches you how to use the command line in Windows and on the Mac to start an executable file (exe).
Step #1. Open the Start menu
Click the Start button in the lower left corner of your desktop to open the Start menu.
Step #2. Type and search cmd in the Start menu
At the top of the window, the term Command Prompt should appear as a search result.
Step 3. Click on Command Prompt from the Start menu
A new Command Prompt window will appear.
Step 4. Type cd [file path] in the Command Prompt
This command will take you to the folder containing the exe program you want to run.
Step 5. Find the file path of the folder containing the exe program
Open the folder containing the program in an explorer window, and copy the file path from the address bar at the top of the window.
- For example, if you're trying to open Mozilla Firefox, the exe file you want to open is probably in a folder called Mozilla Firefox in "Program Files" or "Programs" in drive C.
- In that case, the path is C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox.
Step 6. Replace [filepath] in the command with the actual path to your file
By going to that file location you can execute commands there such as starting the exe file in that folder.
For example, if you want to start Mozilla Firefox, your command might look like this: cd C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox
Step 7. Press ↵ Enter or ⏎ Return on your keyboard.
This will take you to the selected file path in the Command Prompt.
Step 8. Type start [filename.exe] in the Command Prompt
This command starts the program from the selected file path.
Step 9. Replace [filename.exe] with the actual name of the program
It must exactly match the name of the program in the folder.
- For example: if you want to run Mozilla Firefox, the program is called by default firefox.exe.
- In this case, your command will look like this: start firefox.exe.
Step 10. Press ↵ Enter or ⏎ Return on your keyboard.
This will run the command to start the selected program.
- An alternative way to open the Command Prompt is to use the Run command box in Windows. You open the Run window using the key combination ⊞ Win+R on your keyboard, after which you type cmd, and click To carry out click to open the Command Prompt.