Windows 8 Command Prompt Commands

A Complete List of CMD Commands in Windows 8

The Command Prompt available in Windows 8 contains access to around 230 command line commands. The commands available in Windows 8 are used for a variety of purposes, including diagnosing and correcting certain Windows problems, automating tasks, and much more.

Note: A number of Windows 8 Command Prompt commands are very similar to MS-DOS commands. However, the Command Prompt in Windows 8 is not MS-DOS so the commands are not correctly referred to as MS-DOS commands. I do have a list of DOS commands if you really are using MS-DOS and are interested.

Not Using Windows 8? Here are lists detailing all available Windows 7 commands, Windows Vista commands, and Windows XP commands.

You can also see every command ever available, from MS-DOS through Windows 8, in my list of Command Prompt commands or check out a one-page table without the details here. If you're mainly interested in changes in command availability from Windows 7, see New (and Removed) Commands in Windows 8.

Below is a complete list of commands, sometimes called CMD commands, available from the Command Prompt in Windows 8:

append - ksetup | ktmutil - time | timeout - xwizard

Append

The append command can be used by programs to open files in another directory as if they were located in the current directory.

The append command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Arp

The arp command is used to display or change entries in the ARP cache.

Assoc

The assoc command is used to display or change the file type associated with a particular file extension.

The attrib command is used to change the attributes of a single file or a directory. More »

Auditpol

The auditpol command is used to display or change audit policies.

Bcdboot

The bcdboot command is used to copy boot files to the system partition and to create a new system BCD store.

Bcdedit

The bcdedit command is used to view or make changes to Boot Configuration Data.

Bdehdcfg

The bdehdcfg command is used to prepare a hard drive for BitLocker Drive Encryption.

Bitsadmin

The bitsadmin command is used to create, manage, and monitor download and upload jobs.

While the bitsadmin command is available in Windows 8, you should know that it is being phased out. The BITS PowerShell cmdlets should be used instead.

Bootcfg

The bootcfg command is used to build, modify, or view the contents of the boot.ini file, a hidden file that is used to identify in what folder, on which partition, and on which hard drive Windows is located.

The bootcfg command was replaced by the bcdedit command beginning in Windows Vista. Bootcfg is still available in Windows 8 but it serves no real value since boot.ini is not used.

Bootsect

The bootsect command is used to configure the master boot code to one compatible with Windows 8 (BOOTMGR).

The bootsect command is only available from the Command Prompt in Advanced Startup Options.

Break

The break command sets or clears extended CTRL+C checking on DOS systems.

The break command is available in Windows 8 to provide compatibility with MS-DOS files but it has no effect in Windows 8 itself.

Cacls

The cacls command is used to display or change access control lists of files.

Even though the cacls command is available in Windows 8, it's being phased out. Microsoft recommends that you use the icacls command instead.

Call

The call command is used to run a script or batch program from within another script or batch program.

The call command has no effect outside of a script or batch file. In other words, running the call command at the Command Prompt will do nothing.

Cd

The Cd command is the shorthand version of the chdir command.

Certreq

The certreq command is used to perform various certification authority (CA) certificate functions.

Certutil

The certutil command is used to dump and display certification authority (CA) configuration information in addition to other CA functions.

Change

The change command changes various terminal server settings like install modes, COM port mappings, and logons.

Chcp

The chcp command displays or configures the active code page number.

Chdir

The chdir command is used to display the drive letter and folder that you are currently in. Chdir can also be used to change the drive and/or directory that you want to work in.

Checknetisolation

The checknetisolation command is used to test apps that require network capabilities.

Chglogon

The chglogon command enables, disables, or drains terminal server session logins.

Executing the chglogon command is the same as executing change logon.

Chgport

The chgport command can be used to display or change COM port mappings for DOS compatibility.

Executing the chgport command is the same as executing change port.

Chgusr

The chgusr command is used to change the install mode for the terminal server.

Executing the chgusr command is the same as executing change user.

Chkdsk

The chkdsk command, often referred to as check disk, is used to identify and correct certain hard drive errors.

Chkntfs

The chkntfs command is used to configure or display the checking of the disk drive during the Windows boot process.

Choice

The choice command is used within a script or batch program to provide a list of choices and return of the value of that choice to the program.

Cipher

The cipher command shows or changes the encryption status of files and folders on NTFS partitions.

Clip

The clip command is used to redirect the output from any command to the clipboard in Windows.

Cls

The cls command clears the screen of all previously entered commands and other text.

Cmd

The cmd command starts a new instance of the command interpreter.

Cmdkey

The cmdkey command is used to show, create, and remove stored user names and passwords.

Cmstp

The cmstp command installs or uninstalls a Connection Manager service profile.

Color

The color command is used to change the colors of the text and background within the Command Prompt window.

Command

The command command starts a new instance of the command.com command interpreter.

The command command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Comp

The comp command is used to compare the contents of two files or sets of files.

Compact

The compact command is used to show or change the compression state of files and directories on NTFS partitions.

Convert

The convert command is used to convert FAT or FAT32 formatted volumes to the NTFS format.

Copy

The copy command does simply that - it copies one or more files from one location to another.

Cscript

The cscript command is used to execute scripts via Microsoft Script Host.

The cscript command is most commonly used to manage printing from the command line with scripts like prncnfg.vbs, prndrvr.vbs, prnmngr.vbs, and others.

Date

The date command is used to show or change the current date.

Debug

The debug command starts Debug, a command line application used to test and edit programs.

The debug command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Defrag

The defrag command is used to defragment a drive you specify. The defrag command is the command line version of Microsoft's Disk Defragmenter.

Del

The del command is used to delete one or more files. The del command is the same as the erase command.

The dir command is used to display a list of files and folders contained inside the folder that you are currently working in. The dir command also displays other important information like the hard drive's serial number, the total number of files listed, their combined size, the total amount of free space left on the drive, and more. More »

Diskcomp

The diskcomp command is used to compare the contents of two floppy disks.

Diskcopy

The diskcopy command is used to copy the entire contents of one floppy disk to another.

Diskpart

The diskpart command is used to create, manage, and delete hard drive partitions.

Diskperf

The diskperf command is used to manage disk performance counters remotely.

The diskperf command was useful for disk performance counter administration in Windows NT and 2000 but are permanently enabled in Windows 8.

Diskraid

The diskraid command starts the DiskRAID tool which is used to manage and configure RAID arrays.

Dism

The dism command starts the Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool (DISM). The DISM tool is used to manage features in Windows images.

Dispdiag

The dispdiag command is used to output a log of information about the display system.

Djoin

The djoin command is used to create a new computer account in a domain.

Doskey

The doskey command is used to edit command lines, create macros, and recall previously entered commands.

Dosx

The dosx command is used to start DOS Protected Mode Interface (DPMI), a special mode designed to give MS-DOS applications access to more than the normally allowed 640 KB.

The dosx command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

The dosx command (and DPMI) is only available in Windows 8 to support older MS-DOS programs.

Driverquery

The driverquery command is used to show a list of all installed drivers.

Echo

The echo command is used to show messages, most commonly from within script or batch files. The echo command can also be used to turn the echoing feature on or off.

Edit

The edit command starts the MS-DOS Editor tool which is used to create and modify text files.

The edit is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Edlin

The edlin command starts the Edlin tool which is used to create and modify text files from the command line.

The edlin command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Endlocal

The endlocal command is used to end the localization of environment changes inside a batch or script file.

Erase

The erase command is used to delete one or more files. The erase command is the same as the del command.

Esentutl

The esentutl command is used to manage Extensible Storage Engine databases.

Eventcreate

The eventcreate command is used to create a custom event in an event log.

Exe2Bin

The exe2bin command is used to convert a file of the EXE file type (executable file) to a binary file.

The exe2bin command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Exit

The exit command is used to end the Command Prompt session that you're currently working in.

Expand

The expand command is used to extract a single file or a group of files from a compressed file.

Extrac32

The extrac32 command is used to extract the files and folders contained in Microsoft Cabinet (CAB) files.

The extrac32 command is actually a CAB extraction program for use by Internet Explorer but can be used to extract any Microsoft Cabinet file. Use the expand command instead of the extrac32 command if possible.

Fastopen

The fastopen command is used to add a program's hard drive location to a special list stored in memory, potentially improving the program's launch time by removing the need for MS-DOS to locate the application on the drive.

The fastopen command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8. Fastopen only exists in 32-bit versions of Windows 8 to support older MS-DOS files.

Fc

The fc command is used to compare two individual or sets of files and then show the differences between them.

Find

The find command is used to search for a specified text string in one or more files.

Findstr

The findstr command is used to find text string patterns in one or more files.

Finger

The finger command is used to return information about one or more users on a remote computer that's running the Finger service.

Fltmc

The fltmc command is used to load, unload, list, and otherwise manage Filter drivers.

Fondue

The fondue command, short for Features on Demand User Experience Tool, is used to install any of the several optional Windows 8 features from the command line.

Optional Windows 8 features can also be installed from the Programs and Features applet in Control Panel.

For

The for command is used to run a specified command for each file in a set of files. The for command is most often used within a batch or script file.

Forfiles

The forfiles command selects one or more files to execute a specified command on. The forfiles command is most often used within a batch or script file.

The format command is used to format a drive in the file system that you specify.

Drive formatting is also available from Disk Management within Windows 8. More »

Fsutil

The fsutil command is used to perform various FAT and NTFS file system tasks like managing reparse points and sparse files, dismounting a volume, and extending a volume.

Ftp

The ftp command can used to transfer files to and from another computer. The remote computer must be operating as an FTP server.

Ftype

The ftype command is used to define a default program to open a specified file type.

Getmac

The getmac command is used to display the media access control (MAC) address of all the network controllers on a system.

Goto

The goto command is used in a batch or script file to direct the command process to a labeled line in the script.

Gpresult

The gpresult command is used to display Group Policy settings.

Gpupdate

The gpupdate command is used to update Group Policy settings.

Graftabl

The graftabl command is used to enable the ability of Windows to display an extended character set in graphics mode.

The graftabl command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Graphics

The graphics command is used to load a program that can print graphics.

The graphics command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

The help command provides more detailed information on other Command Prompt commands. More »

Hostname

The hostname command displays the name of the current host.

Hwrcomp

The hwrcomp command is used to compile custom dictionaries for handwriting recognition.

Hwrreg

The hwrreg command is used to install a previously compiled custom dictionary for handwriting recognition.

Icacls

The icacls command is used to display or change access control lists of files. The icacls command is an updated version of the cacls command.

If

The if command is used to perform conditional functions in a batch file.

Ipconfig

The ipconfig command is used to display detailed IP information for each network adapter utilizing TCP/IP. The ipconfig command can also be used to release and renew IP addresses on systems configured to receive them via a DHCP server.

Irftp

The irftp command is used to transmit files over an infrared link.

Iscsicli

The iscsicli command starts the Microsoft iSCSI Initiator, used to manage iSCSI.

Kb16

The kb16 command is used to support MS-DOS files that need to configure a keyboard for a specific language.

The kb16 command is not available in 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

Klist

The klist command is used to list Kerberos service tickets. The klist command can also be used to purge Kerberos tickets.

Ksetup

The ksetup command is used to configure connections to a Kerberos server.

There are so many Command Prompt commands in Windows 8 that I can't put them all in this one list

Click the link above to see the List #2 of 3 detailing the Command Prompt commands available in Windows 8. More »