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Computer Flashback: Windows 98 Run Commands

[ Image: Screenshot of the MS Run Prompt ] Even with all the fancy-pants new features found in Windows XP and now Vista, Microsoft Windows 98 (Second Edition) remains our favorite Windows-flavored operating system. We love it so much, we still use it on one of our trusty laptops. Over the years, we have discovered several very useful functions available via the command line or even the “Run” prompt (Start → Run...).

Anyway, without spending too much time researching or explaining these wonderful tools, we figured posting the information online may prove beneficial at some point in the future. So, without further ado, we present this working repository of helpful MS run commands:

  • start → starts any program (e.g., start firefox.exe)
  • edit → open and edit any file (e.g., edit win.ini)
  • taskkill.exe → close/exit running application(s) or program(s)
  • sort.exe → sort file data by the nth character in a line
  • ping → send ping (e.g., ping google.com)
  • setdebug → opens the ActiveX debugging tool for Java
  • runas.exe → launch application as a different user
  • recover.exe → recover data from damaged NTFS disk
  • msconfig → opens the System Configuration Utility
  • win.ini → displays the win.ini configuration file
  • wininit → displays any changes to be implemented
  • openfiles.exe → list or close any group of files
  • sysedit → opens the System Configuration Editor
  • winipcfg → opens the IP Configuration Utility
  • command.com → opens the MS-DOS command prompt
  • doskey → installs various command line tools
  • explorer → opens the Windows Explorer Window
  • defrag → opens the Disk Defragmentation tool
  • cdplayer → opens the Windows CD Player (wow)
  • scanreg → runs the Windows Registry Checker
  • extract → opens the File Extraction Utility
  • inf → opens the windows\inf directory
  • iextract → extracts IE backup information
  • fdisk → initiates the Disk Format Utility
  • scandisk → initiates the ScanDisk Utility
  • drwatson → runs Dr. Watson error debugger
  • attrib → opens the File Attribute Editor
  • winfile → opens the Windows File Manager
  • drvspace → opens the DriveSpace Utility
  • chkdsk → opens the Drive Error Checker
  • winhelp → opens the Windows Help tool
  • calc → opens the Microsoft Calculator
  • mem → opens Memory Information panel
  • regedit → opens the Registry Editor
  • ipconfig → display network settings
  • progman → opens the Program Manager
  • setver → runs the Set Version tool
  • label → opens Drive Label Utility
  • pbrush → opens Microsoft Paint
  • diskcopy → copy a floppy disk
  • telnet → opens Windows Telnet
  • net → opens the Net Utility

If something doesn’t look or work as it should, or if you have additional information, please drop a comment — we would love to flesh out this post with information that is both useful and accurate. Thanks!

Jeff Starr
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Jeff Starr = Web Developer. Book Author. Secretly Important.
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Perishable Press is operated by Jeff Starr, a professional web developer and book author with two decades of experience. Here you will find posts about web development, WordPress, security, and more »
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