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What is the shortest route to Device Manager?

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up vote 25 down vote accepted

Click on the Start menu and type (or type the same in a command-line window, CMD.EXE):


Or you can just type Device Manager and it should come up.

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Running "devmgmt.msc" is usually pretty straightforward (as is running things like appwiz.cpl, inetcpl.cpl, etc.). – Isxek Aug 16 '10 at 18:01
Instead of the full name, you can also type "dev man" and the Device Manager should be your first result. – codinguser Aug 18 '10 at 11:16
And once you have the name, you can even create a shortcut for it, if you need it frequently. – gbarry Mar 2 '11 at 23:14
Does this work on Windows 8? – Tim Nov 23 '14 at 12:24
@Tim yes it'll work the same, you just need to access the start screen or use Win + S on Win 8.1 to search globally. – Sandeep Bansal Nov 24 '14 at 16:29

My typical route to get to the Device Manager window is Windows Key + Pause/Break. This will get you to the System Properties window. Device Manager is just two clicks away:

Screenshot of the System Properties window, with tab Hardware highlighted (where the button for starting Device Manager is).

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  1. Create a new shortcut.

    enter image description here

  2. Enter devmgmt.msc as the target.

    enter image description here

  3. Give the shortcut a name. For example: Device Manager.

    enter image description here

  4. Optionally, pin the resulting shortcut to your taskbar for even faster access.

    enter image description here

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win+r hdwwiz.cpl


win+r devmgmt.msc

both files open device manager window and are located in %windir%\system32\

though .cpl is opened by control.exe, and .msc by mmc.exe executables which are also located in the same path


personally i think hdwwiz.cpl is better to memorize as it can be associated with appwiz.cpl counterpart for software, that is programs and features window, but despite being a .cpl file it opens in microsoft management console, meaning it's not a control panel app, therefore should be associated with mmc.exe

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The search function in the Vista/7 Start Menu is pretty awesome. Just type 'Device Manager'. This works for pretty much any system config applet as long as you have the slightest idea what it's called. (Try 'hard drive' sometime.)

The old-fashioned way I used in XP, and this still works, is to right-click My Computer in the Start Menu and select 'Manage', which brings up the Computer Management console which has Device Manager, Disk Manager, Event Viewer, etc, readily accessible.

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Yeah, but sadly, the search doesn't work in Win 8 :( – Gustavo Mori Sep 9 '13 at 19:57
@GustavoMori - Sure it does (and I just tried it on my Surface to make sure). You have to look in the Settings subheading, though (apparently this is changed in 8.1 and they've eliminated categorized search by default, but I haven't messed with 8.1 at all yet). It's probably faster just to do WinKey + X and pick it from the list if you're on the desktop, though. – Shinrai Sep 10 '13 at 21:24

You can start the device manager through:

  1. The management console snap-in

  2. The control panel pane



    rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hdwwiz.cpl
  3. The device manager dll:

    rundll32.exe devmgr.dll DeviceManager_Execute

These all work on Windows 7 through Windows 10.

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