Change Command Prompt Transparency in Windows 10 with Hotkeys

In Linux, I use a semi-transparent terminal app. It does not add any functionality as such to the terminal, but gives a fancy appearance to my console. With Windows 10, Microsoft added the same ability to the good old command processor, cmd.exe, and PowerShell. It's a lesser known feature that you can change the transparency level on the fly for the current window with hotkeys.


In Windows 10, the command prompt was significantly updated. It has a LOT of new features which make it really useful. These include an extended set of hotkeys such as:
  • CTRL + A - Select all
  • CTRL + C - Copy
  • CTRL + F - Find
  • CTRL + M - Mark
  • CTRL + V - Paste
  • CTRL + ↑ / CTRL + ↓ - Scroll line up or down
  • CTRL + PgUp / CTRL + PgDn - Scroll whole page up or down

The console window can now be freely resized and opened fullscreen. Also, it supports text selection using the mouse like any other text editor.

Besides these usability improvements, the command prompt also received some appearance enhancements. You can make it transparent. First of all, let's see how it can be done.

Make Command Prompt Transparent in Windows 10

  1. Open a command prompt instance.Windows 10 open command prompt
  2. Right click its title bar and select Properties from the context menu.Windows 10 command prompt properties context menu
  3. On the Colors tab, adjust the transparency level using the provided slider control:Windows 10 command prompt transparency level

The result will be as follows:Windows 10 transparent command prompt

Looks pretty cool, right?

If you are changing the transparency level frequently, e.g. depending on your tasks, this procedure can be annoying. Instead, you can change the transparency level on the fly using the hotkeys. Here is how.

Change the command prompt transparency level with hotkeys

  1. Open a new command prompt window.
  2. Press and hold the Ctrl + Shift keys and scroll the mouse wheel.
  3. The transparency will be instantly changed for the window.Change Command Prompt Transparency With Hotkeys
  4. Now, open a new PowerShell console.
  5. Press and hold the Ctrl + Shift keys and scroll the mouse wheel to change its transparency level.Change PowerShell Transparency With Hotkeys

The change will be applied to the active window. Other PowerShell and Command Prompt windows won't be affected.

The following video demonstrates this in action:

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That's it.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

7 thoughts on “Change Command Prompt Transparency in Windows 10 with Hotkeys”

  1. I want to use some of the tweaks you guys have made however I’m concerned that they’re packaged with trojans as well as the service they’re advertised to do. I’m like 95% sure they don’t have trojans. But that 5% of uncertainty is holding me back from using them.

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