Open Command Prompt at Boot in Windows 10

The command prompt in Windows 10 is the shell environment where you can run text-based console tools and utilities by typing commands. Using the built-in commands, you can perform various tasks on your computer directly without having to refer to the GUI. For maintenance and recovery, it is useful to open the command prompt at boot in Windows 10. Here is how.


In this article, we'll see two ways to open the command prompt at boot. The first one involves the setup program, the second one shows how to open the command prompt during boot for the already installed operating system.

Open Command Prompt at Boot using Windows 10's setup media

  1. Boot from the Windows installation disk/USB stick with Windows setup.
  2. Wait for the "Windows Setup" screen:
    Windows 10 setup screen
  3. Press Shift + F10 keys together on the keyboard. This will open the command prompt window: Windows 10 setup cmd opened

Note: If you are not able to boot from DVD media, that is, your PC does not have an optical drive, you can create a bootable flash drive.
To create a bootable USB disk, see these articles:

Open Command Prompt at Boot using Advanced Startup Options

  1. Open the Start menu and move your mouse pointer to the Shutdown button. Click it to open the Shutdown menu:
    Windows 10 Start menu Restart item
  2. Press and hold the Shift key on the keyboard. Do not release the Shift key and click the Restart item: Windows 10 Start menu Restart item hold shift
  3. Windows 10 will restart quickly and the Advanced Startup Options screen will appear.
    windows 10 advanced startup options

An alternative way to access Advanced Startup Options in Windows 10 is as follows:

  1. Open the Start menu and click Settings.
  2. Go to Update and recovery -> Recovery: Windows 10 update and recovery
  3. There you will find Advanced startup. Click the Restart now button.

Once Advanced Startup Options appear on the screen, do the following.

  1. Click the Troubleshoot item.
  2. Click Advanced Options on the next screen. Windows 10 troubleshoot
  3. Finally, click the Command Prompt item. Windows 10 advanced

That's it.

3 thoughts on “Open Command Prompt at Boot in Windows 10

  1. Michael D Drumm

    Thank You ! (in English)

    Your post about open command prompt booting windows 10 was what I needed to complete my reinstall of windows 7 on a new laptop that was preloaded with windows 10.

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      You are most welcome.

      Reply
  2. Hernan Suarez

    Hi! Thanks for the post.
    I have a huge problem though. I decided to install win7 and format my whole PC because it was running very slow and had some WEIRD software issue that made both of my shift keys on the keyboard stop working. Being that said, I made a mistake and formatted the hard drive while having UEFI issues for not making A GPT partition. Now, I should be able to open cmd from the win7 installer and make the gpt partitions from there but prpbñem is: the command to do it is SHIFT + F10 and I swear shift doesnt work. Is there any other way to open cmd with a command that doesnt involve shift keys? I really need help, my pc is dead at the moment and I work with it :(
    Thanks

    Reply

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