Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a set of files (".r2w") extensions, that have a file association with Attachmate Reflection. I have several of these in a folder, which I've added to the PATH. I've also added .r2w to PATHEXT.

This setup appears to be correct for cmd.exe, but does not work from the Run dialog (Win+R). For example, I have one file 'test.r2w'. From cmd.exe, I can simply type "test" and it launches correct. However, typing "test" in Run dialog does not work.

I ran Process Monitor, and it appears that the algorithm for command searching for the Run dialog is different than what is the "The PATH Command and PATHEXT Variable" section here:

1) Can anyone explain what the command search algorithm is for the Run Dialog?

2) Can anyone provide a way to set up the Run Dialog to do what I want - specifically be able to run .r2w files without having to type the extension?

share|improve this question

Well, the run dialog != the NT command interpretter.

But my guess is that it uses the same algorithm as ShellExecuteEx. I remember an Old New Thing blog post that shows how you could mimic some of the functionality of the Run Dialog box's search by calling the ShellExecute command.

If I was Microsoft, I wouldn't document the search algorithm either. It's an implementation detail.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.