Vista shell commands

Posted on February 14, 2011. Filed under: Macros & Shortcuts, Windows Vista | Tags: , , , , , , , |

TechRepublic has a Windows tip on using Shell commands in Vista:

“Using Shell command shortcuts

While you can use Explorer, the Control Panel, or the Start menu to access key features in Windows Vista, sometimes a shortcut can be more useful. Hidden underneath the Windows Vista architecture are a whole host of special shortcuts known as Shell commands. To use a Shell command, all you need to do is press [Windows]+R to access the Run dialog box and then enter the word Shell followed by a colon (:) and then command as in:

Shell:command

As you can see there are no spaces between the word Shell and the colon and the command — it is essentially one word.

While there are close to 100 Shell commands, not all of them are very useful. As such, I won’t actually list them. I’ll just discuss the ones that I find most useful in everyday situations first and then I’ll list the other ones that I find occasionally useful.

Keep in mind that not all of these Shell commands will work in all versions of Windows Vista.

Most useful Shell commands

  • shell:ChangeRemoveProgramsFolder – opens the Programs and Features (Add/Remove Programs) window.
  • shell:Sendto – opens the SendTo folder so that you can easily add more locations to the Send To list.
  • shell:Common Administrative Tools – opens the Administrative Tools menu as a folder
  • shell:Desktop – opens the Desktop as a folder.
  • shell:Downloads – opens your Downloads folder.
  • shell:Quick Launch – opens the Quick Launch folder.
  • shell:Searches – opens the Search folder showing all your saved searches.

The other useful Shell commands

  • shell:AppUpdatesFolder – opens the Installed Windows Updates location in Program and Files.
  • shell:Cache – opens Internet Explorer’s temporary Internet files folder.
  • shell:CD Burning – opens the folder where Windows Vista temporarily stores files to be burned to a CD.
  • shell:Common Desktop – opens the Public User’s Desktop folder.
  • shell:Common Documents – opens the Public User’s Documents folder.
  • shell:Common Programs – opens the Start menu shortcuts folder.
  • shell:Common Start Menu – opens the Start Menu as a folder.
  • shell:Common Startup – opens the Startup folder.
  • shell:Common Templates – opens the Templates folder.
  • shell:CommonDownloads – opens the Public User’s Downloads folder.
  • shell:CommonMusic – opens the Public User’s Music folder.
  • shell:CommonPictures – opens the Public User’s Pictures folder.
  • shell:CommonVideo – opens the Public User’s Video folder.
  • shell:ConflictFolder – opens the Sync Center Conflicts folder.
  • shell:ConnectionsFolder – opens the Network Connections folder.
  • shell:Contacts – opens your Contacts folder.
  • shell:ControlPanelFolder – opens the Control Panel.
  • shell:Cookies – opens the cookies folder
  • shell:Favorites – opens your Favorites folder.
  • shell:Fonts – opens Vista’s Fonts folder.
  • shell:Gadgets – opens your Windows Sidebar Gadgets folder.
  • shell:History – opens the Internet Explorer history folder.
  • shell:InternetFolder – opens Internet Explorer.
  • shell:Links – opens your Links folder location.
  • shell:MyMusic – opens your Music folder.
  • shell:MyPictures – opens your Pictures folder.
  • shell:MyVideo – opens your Video folder.
  • shell:MyComputerFolder – opens Computer window.
  • shell:NetHood – opens Network Shortcuts folder.
  • shell:NetworkPlacesFolder – opens the Network Places location.
  • shell:Original Images – opens Windows Photo Gallery Original Images folder.
  • shell:Personal – opens your Documents folder.
  • shell:PhotoAlbums – opens your Slide Show folder.
  • shell:Playlists – opens your Playlists folder.
  • shell:PrintersFolder – opens Printers in the Control Panel.
  • shell:Profile – opens your main folder.
  • shell:ProgramFiles – opens the Program Files folder.
  • shell:Public – opens the Public User folder.
  • shell:Recent – opens the Recent Items folder.
  • shell:RecycleBinFolder – opens the Recycle Bin folder.
  • shell:Start Menu – opens the Start Menu folder.
  • shell:Startup – opens the Startup folder
  • shell:System – opens the System32 folder location.
  • shell:Templates – opens the Templates folder location.
  • shell:UserProfiles – opens the Users folder.
  • shell:UsersFilesFolder – opens your main folder.
  • shell:Windows – opens the Windows folder.”
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