if I do run (Winkey + R) and type "C:\", explorer shows up in "C:\".

I'd like to know how to do the same for the My Computer folder in Windows Vista / 7.

  • I've found this when I was searching run prompt history. Try ' file: ' without quotes. :)
    – Buddybear
    Jun 16, 2016 at 6:24

8 Answers 8


You could just press WIN+E and skip the run prompt all together.

  • 2
    I'd agree with this one Jan 4, 2011 at 10:45
  • I was just about to say this... then I realized you beat me to it by 3 years! Feb 10, 2014 at 8:49
  • 1
    This don't answer the question. The question ask "from cmd line".
    – Meds
    Apr 19, 2016 at 15:34
  • Nope, it gives an alternative solution that the OP may not have known about, and since it is the accepted answer and the answer with the must up votes I would conclude the OP and at least 41 others found it helpful. Apr 21, 2016 at 17:57

The easiest way is to type shell:mycomputerfolder or Win+E

Here is a list of other locations.

  • 1
    Note that running command shell:mycomputerfolder will not start mycomputerfolder if it's already open. On the other hand pressing win+e will open mycomputerfolder as many times as you press it.
    – IGRACH
    Sep 19, 2016 at 10:41
  • 1
    Works for me on Windows 10 1809. I saw that, in a command prompt, start shell:mycomputerfolder raises an existing File Explorer window showing "This PC" as @IGRACH suggested. But both explorer shell:mycomputerfolder and start explorer shell:mycomputerfolder open a new window even if "This PC" is already open. Aug 1, 2019 at 17:42

Try :

explorer.exe /e,::{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}
  • 2
    It'd be useful to know how you worked that one out
    – barlop
    Jan 4, 2011 at 10:29
  • 2
    @barlop: Google is my friend.
    – harrymc
    Jan 4, 2011 at 10:53
  • 1
    @harrymc if you found it via google then the exact link would've been useful in your answer. But i'll have a look
    – barlop
    Jan 4, 2011 at 11:32
  • @harrymc you may have hit on something that is generically useful.. in launching anything obscure. And all one needs is the GUID.. just have to find the GUID somehow. Only thing is it's a bit inefficient, as it is.
    – barlop
    Jan 4, 2011 at 11:33
  • 9
    @barlop: There are hundreds of class-names describing places, as Explorer is the main user interface for Windows. The one above comes from HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D} (look at the sub-keys). For the grand-daddy of them all, use Explorer to create a folder called ControlPanel.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}, then look inside.
    – harrymc
    Jan 4, 2011 at 11:45

The closest I can think of is typing the below into the run dialog;


But I believe that only brings up your home folder.

  • 1
    Yes, this only brings up the user's home folder.
    – SgtOJ
    Jan 4, 2011 at 10:29
  • 3
    It brings up "my computer" for me! Where did you hear of that one? try adding more dots if it doesn't work. e.g. start run (dot) <ENTER> gets to %userprofile%, then .. would go up one level, and ... up 2 levels which should be c:\ but if for some reason it wasn't (why?!) then you could add more dots (adding to what I just wrote) it brings up "my computer" in XP. I can't comment on windows vista
    – barlop
    Jan 4, 2011 at 10:32
  • 2
    . always means the current directory, and .. its parent. Three or more dots has no special meaning; however, since Windows API normally strips off the trailing dots from a filename (foo.bar. automatically becomes foo.bar), some programs treat ... the same way as .., and others strip off all dots resulting in empty path.
    – user1686
    Jan 4, 2011 at 13:38
  • @grawity +1 seems about right- I see "cd ..." in cmd is just nothing But start run ... Does start "my computer" in xp. Whereas start run .. does not. start run ..\..\..\..\ just goes to C:\ (which is understandable) and doesn't start "my computer". So I guess perhaps ... is just a start run thing. I'd not seen ... listed in the few start run shortcut lists i've seen.
    – barlop
    Jan 4, 2011 at 14:18
  • 1
    In XP it opens My Computer but in Win7 it opens my home folder.
    – glenneroo
    Jan 20, 2011 at 6:43

The easiest way:

  • Write: explorer = and My Computer window will pop up
  • Write: explorer c: and the C drive window will open.

This is working fine on Windows 7.

  • 1
    explorer = seriously?? I love it haha
    – daVe
    Mar 16, 2018 at 12:01
  • Works on my Windows 10 1809. Opens "This PC". Prepend with "start" also does the same thing: start explorer = Aug 1, 2019 at 17:37

This one

explorer /root,

Yes, the comma is important

  • That one is just cool.
    – dgo
    Jul 19, 2013 at 16:17
  • Fancy, but doesn't work on Windows Vista. Sep 19, 2013 at 12:16
  • This is A Thing of Beauty. For a second you can feel like a boss :D
    – J. Wrong
    Jun 12, 2021 at 16:16

I wanted this too, but I've just gotten in the habit of opening the C: drive through the Run dialog then pressing backspace to go up a folder into My Computer.

It's not really the "right" answer but it gets me there in just one additional keystroke so I'm happy with it. Much better than memorizing any GUIDs, anyway.


Try this:

runas /noprofile /user:domain\username explorer

It works for all other command line options as far as I know.

  • 1
    ... starts Explorer with "Libraries" open, not "My Computer" under Windows 7. Aug 31, 2011 at 19:52

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