So I know about the PATH variable, but it's not there. Why can I type "notepad++" in cmd and it will work and how can make other apps work like this?

The question is not HOW to start it via win+r run, but WHY can I start it right after installation without putting notepad++ directory to path variable.

Added screenshots for path variables

Current user:
Current user


EDIT2: cmd echo %path%

C:\ProgramData\Oracle\Java\javapath;C:\Program Files (x86)\Embarcadero\Studio\20.0\bin;C:\Users\Public\Documents\Embarcadero\Studio\20.0\Bpl;C:\Program Files (x86)\Embarcadero\Studio\20.0\bin64;C:\Users\Public\Documents\Embarcadero\Studio\20.0\Bpl\Win64;C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Oracle\Java\javapath;C:\Windows\system32;C:\Windows;C:\Windows\System32\Wbem;C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\;C:\Windows\System32\OpenSSH\;C:\Program Files\dotnet\;C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\130\Tools\Binn\;C:\Program Files\nodejs\;C:\Program Files\Git\cmd;C:\Program Files (x86)\GitExtensions\;C:\Program Files\php-7.3.4-Win32-VC15-x64;C:\xampp\php;C:\ProgramData\ComposerSetup\bin;C:\Program Files\MySQL\MySQL Shell 8.0\bin\;C:\Users\deadman\AppData\Roaming\Composer\vendor\bin

  • Possible duplicate of How do I start Notepad++ from cmd?
    – Ramhound
    May 14, 2019 at 13:57
  • 1
    Use echo %PATH% in Command Prompt to inspect the actual contents of PATH.
    – Daniel B
    May 14, 2019 at 13:57
  • If the path to Notepad++ does not exist in the Path variable that is the exact reason it isn't working the way you want it to work.
    – Ramhound
    May 14, 2019 at 14:02
  • 3
    Again: Please use echo %PATH%. Also, use where notepad++ to see where it is picked up. Only then can we start to check where this folder is added to %PATH%.
    – Daniel B
    May 14, 2019 at 14:36
  • 1
    seems like i found the answer, thank you all for your help :)
    – ymdred16
    May 14, 2019 at 17:37

1 Answer 1


Mose likely because some apps and programs add their paths to registry. Here you can find more about searching order for starting apps via cmd or win+r. These paths are stored in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths Here you can find more about application registration on Microsoft docs.

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