Update for Windows 8: It turns out that Windows 8 has an administrator command prompt just a right-click away!
In Windows Vista, when you open a command prompt using the good ol’ cmd command from the Run box, you get a command prompt just like in XP. This command prompt, however, won’t allow you to do anything that requires administrative rights: User Access Control will commence to giving you plenty of non-graphical text feedback.
Lucky for us, there’s an easy solution to opening a command prompt with administrative rights that doesn’t even require you to use a mouse!
- Press the Windows key.
- Type cmd (which will appear in the Windows Search box) [Update for Windows 8: In Windows 8, you just start typing cmd at the Start Screen after hitting the Windows Key]
- You’ll see cmd show up in the search results. If it is not already highlighted, use the arrow keys to do so.
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Enter
That’s it! You’ll have a command prompt with administrative rights. Note: You’ll know you have the admin-enabled prompt because your current working directory will be C:\Windows\System32 instead of the regular default of C:\users\%username%.