Speed up Windows XP application launching with the Run command

The Run command isn't just for file searches and application shortcuts in Windows Vista—you can also use it in Windows XP. Here's how to use the Run command to easily access and open the resource of your choice.

Windows Vista's Start menu contains an integrated search feature that, in addition to searching for files on the hard disk, can also search for application shortcuts nested within the Start menu. For example, the Windows Explorer shortcut is nested in the All Programs | Accessories folder, but you can get to it very quickly by typing exp in the Start Search text box and pressing [Enter].

You can emulate the same type of timesaving search capability in Windows XP by using the Run command and taking advantage of its history listing. Here's how:

  1. Press [Windows]R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type the path and executable filename of an application in the Open text box and click OK to launch the application.

Once you do so, the Run command will remember the name and location of the executable file in its history. Now, the next time that you need to run that application, you can simply press [Windows]R and type in the first few characters of the executable filename in the Open text box. When you do, the full executable filename will appear in the Run command's history. You can then launch the application simply by pressing the down arrow followed by [Enter].

Note: This tip applies to both Windows XP Home and Windows XP Professional.

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About Greg Shultz

Greg Shultz is a freelance Technical Writer. Previously, he has worked as Documentation Specialist in the software industry, a Technical Support Specialist in educational industry, and a Technical Journalist in the computer publishing industry.

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