After much research I need to ask how I may go about getting a path list of open files with a particular extension in Windows 7. Files, not processes; I need the files that Adobe Reader, or other, has open.

Occasionally I am forced to restart my PC. I always have multiple PDFs and/or Notepad files open. After restart it is difficult to reopen these files so as to quickly get back up and working again. I would like to know how to get a list paths to open files by extension so that I may then write a Batch or Python script that will save these file names and paths, and then later run another script to reopen these files.

I found the tool OpenedFilesView by NirSoft which shows all open files, and associated extensions. Therefore it seems possible to get from Windows a list of paths to open files by extension, but I need to know what commands to use to do this within the command-prompt window/shell in Windows.

1 Answer 1


You can use SysInternals Process Explorer (from Microsoft, free download). It is kind of a TaskManager on Steroids, and has a function 'Find/Find handle or DLL', search for *.pdf, and it will list all programs with all files that are open that match that string: enter image description here

  • He wants to find the names from the command line
    – DavidPostill
    Dec 19, 2015 at 11:50

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

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