I am using Windows 10 Pro, but I'm sure the process is the same as Windows Vista through 8.1 or it's similar enough for me to figure out the minor differences.

I have two programs with the same exact named .exe file that I want to target in my path variable in system variables.

Example: Program 1's path: C:\somefolder\anotherfolder\prog.exe Program 2's path: C:\evenmorefolders\prog.exe

I can't run both just by putting their filepaths in the PATH variable because then it will only use the first one listed when I type prog in the command prompt.

I want to set one of these programs to be opened with a name other than prog. I want to be able to type say free in order to use the prog.exe of program 2.

How do I set the environment variables to do that?


The two simplest options (that I can think of) to do what you're trying to do don't require changing the PATH environment variable.

Option one, just to get it out of the way, you can create a Windows Shortcut and point it directly at the program you're trying to run. However, you're asking about typing at a command line, so maybe Shortcuts won't meet your requirements.

Option two, you can create a batch file to run your program.

  1. Open Notepad
  2. Type in C:\somefolder\anotherfolder\prog.exe %1 %2 %3 %4 %5 (the path and filename of your actual program)
  3. Click File > Save As...
  4. Select a location that's in your PATH environment
  5. Call it progA.bat (or whatever makes sense)
  6. Make sure to select 'All files (.)' next to 'Save as type:'

Repeat it for the other program 'C:\evenmorefolders\prog.exe' and call it progB.bat (or whatever...)

The %1, etc. will allow parameters typed in at the command line to pass to the program in the batch file.

Now, from a command line, you can type progA -a -x -t to run one of the programs or type progB /j:100 /p "whatever" /m to run the other one.

  • I had thought about that, but I wanted to be able to use command options as well, such as prog -a or prog file.txt and such as that. – Progfram Apr 16 '16 at 0:14
  • @Progfram why wouldn't you be able to use command with a batch program? – Wes Larson Apr 16 '16 at 0:16
  • Actually, I need to be able to use command options. Defeats the whole purpose if I can't use command options when using it from the command line. – Progfram Apr 16 '16 at 0:19
  • @Progfram Ah. See edits in my answer. – Wes Larson Apr 16 '16 at 0:23
  • Seems to be working great, but I'm not sure what you meant by the progB /j:100 /p "whatever" /m Are you just telling me that any of those types of conditions will work with that batch file? – Progfram Apr 16 '16 at 0:41

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