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Temporarily Changing Console Properties in Windows 7

I want to change the font used by both cmd.exe and PowerShell. When I right click in the window border, I see both Defaults and Properties:

CMD.exe screenshot

What's the difference? One would think Defaults was for all sessions, and Properties was for the current session. However, changes to Properties are persisted even after relaunching cmd.exe.

Another problem is that changing the font in either Defaults or Properties doesn't actually change the font. This is on Windows 8.

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marked as duplicate by Synetech, ChrisF, Siim K, Diogo, Hennes Dec 17 '12 at 13:56

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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Seems they didn't fix it after breaking it in Windows 7 (Vista?): Temporarily Changing Console Properties in Windows 7 –  Karan Dec 17 '12 at 0:28

2 Answers 2

I googled for "command prompt" menu site:microsoft.com, the first result pointed to http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/ff758104.aspx. Here is an excerpt:

  • Properties. Changes you make here affect the current session. When you leave the properties dialog box, you'll be given the option of propagating your changes [will propagate] to the shortcut from which this session was launched. If you accept, all future sessions launched from that shortcut will also use the new settings.
  • Defaults. Changes will not affect the current session but instead will affect all future sessions (except for those launched from a shortcut whose properties have been customized). These changes also affect future sessions in character-mode, MS-DOS-based applications that do not have a program-information file (PIF) and do not store their own settings.

Note that when you use the second method, choosing Defaults, you also get the option to enable and disable the AutoComplete option, which is enabled by default.

In my experience, Windows 7 Command Prompt saves changes made to the current session (e.g. background colour) without asking the user.

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Experiment:
Cmd Prompt: Taskbar Shortcut:
Black (background): White: (text)
Set Default: Green: Magenta (Yuk)

Create a Metro Shortcut for Cmd Prompt
It obeys the default: Green: Magenta:
Return to Taskbar cmd shortcut
Black: White [Incidentally, Default still shows Green: Magenta]

Conclusion:
Properties is for that cmd shortcut:
Default sets the colours for any shortcuts you create down the line.
Default only affects new shortcuts, existing ones keep their ‘Properties’.

Tip: Look compare the Default and Properties for each shortcut.

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