I want to know where the Metro applications (Mail, People, Messages, ...) executable file path is.

Also, how can I run Mail application when my PC starts?

  • They all exist or will exist Windows 8 has not actually been release to everyone. Have you check the indivual program's settings?
    – Ramhound
    Sep 12, 2012 at 14:00
  • @Ramhound I have checked, there's no Run on startup option in the Settings.
    – Luke Vo
    Sep 12, 2012 at 14:02
  • I'm probably going to download Windows 8 in a little bit - once I tinker around with it for a while and find a solution, I'll let you know.
    – cutrightjm
    Sep 12, 2012 at 18:07

5 Answers 5


The answer from vhanla (Nov 1, '12) has a problem: you're only launching the default application. For example, if I run mailto: then Outlook opens, not Mail.

In Windows 10, there's another way:

If you open the start menu and All Apps, you can normal click and drag (left click) a modern app, to create a shortcut. It doesn't work if you typed the name of the app into search, but it works if you browse to All Apps.



Windows + R and run shell:AppsFolder

You will see all apps in this window. Create a shortcut to the desktop, then copy that shortcut to the startup folder available at shell:Startup or found at the following location:

%SystemDrive%\Users\{username}\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

There are some tricky ways to start these Windows 8 applications, you need to find out its special name and since you cannot launch them with their executable (it only can be run from within Modern UI environment) but this is one way to start some of them.

To launch the calendar application:

%windir%\System32\cmd.exe /c start "" "wlcalendar:"

To launch the people application:

%windir%\System32\cmd.exe /c start "" "wlpeople:"

You can try them from the Win+R as it is launched using cmd.exe

Here a list of some of them I found:

%windir%\System32\cmd.exe /c start "" "xboxgames:"

Just look for their names in Windows registry:




If they contain their default value with data like the following:


Try with that name with the command shown above.

And just make a shortcut and place it inside Startup folder

Win+R -> shell:startup -> intro

Some of the application cannot be found there, so this is the only method I know for the moment.

[UPDATE] And since those ":" <~ seems like calling a URL and its value contains URL: you can just use its name to launch them.

Example: (try it with Win+R just write its name and hit enter)


ms-mail: for your mail client
  • Thanks, that's working for me, but do you know if there's any way to start Metro apps like that but not moving to them, only opening them in the background, but staying on the desktop?
    – paradroid
    Mar 20, 2013 at 17:24
  • @paradroid I doubt that there is an "official" way to do so. One workaround would be to automatically switch to the desktop after having launched the app.
    – ComFreek
    Dec 31, 2013 at 17:35

Press Windows + r

Then type shell:startup

Copy all the apps you want into there.

To find an apps location

  1. Go to the Start Menu

  2. Find your app

  3. Right-click

  4. More

  5. Open file location

(NOTE: If there is no open file location button it can't be launched at startup)

Then highlight the app and copy it Ctrl + C then paste it in the shell:startup foler by doing Ctrl + V


You can easily create a shortcut to the metro app and then place that shortcut into the startup folder.

To have Skype (or any other app autorun when you turn on your computer) simply follow the instructions listed in order here: http://www.thefakegeek.com/2013/12/how-to-run-skype-on-startup-in-windows-8-and-8-1/

  • 4
    Welcome to Super User! Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. Dec 31, 2013 at 17:53

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