10 Useful CMD Commands for Everyday Windows Users

Welcome to the world of Command-Line Interface (CLI), where we get into a world commonly associated with black screens and white fonts – the Command Prompt (CMD). CMD is an integral part of the Windows operating system. To a non-technical person, it might look somewhat intimidating at first glance. However, there’s a multitude of basic and easy-to-use CMD commands that are not only useful for developers or IT professionals but also for regular Windows users.

Exploring the Command Prompt

Launching the Command Prompt is a straightforward task: simply type cmd or Command Prompt into your Windows search bar and hit enter. Upon doing so, you’re greeted with a window that may appear somewhat archaic but is incredibly powerful.

1. ipconfig: Troubleshoot Your Internet Connection

One of the most useful CMD commands is ipconfig. Typing this into CMD will display all the necessary details about your network connections, such as IP addresses, subnet mask, and default gateway. If you’re having internet issues, ipconfig can be a starting point to diagnose problems.

  • Use ipconfig /release and ipconfig /renew to refresh your IP address.
  • ipconfig /flushdns helps in clearing the DNS resolver cache, which can solve certain internet connectivity issues.

2. sfc/scannow: Scan and Repair System Files

sfc /scannow is a versatile and incredibly useful command. If Windows is acting up and you suspect corrupted system files, simply run this command. It will scan and repair problematic files where possible, potentially saving you from more significant issues down the line.

3. systeminfo: Learn About Your System

Want a quick rundown of your system’s specifications and configuration? Just type systeminfo into the CMD, and you’ll get detailed information about your computer, including OS, processor, RAM, and network adapter details.

4. netstat: Monitor Network Connections

Curious about your computer’s network connections? netstat allows you to view all the active connections to and from your computer, providing insights into which services and applications are accessing the internet.

5. chkdsk: Check and Repair Disk Errors

Hard drives and SSDs aren’t foolproof, and over time, they can develop errors. chkdsk is a built-in Windows utility that can scan your disk for errors and fix them. It’s simple but may prevent potential data loss.

Example: chkdsk C: /f will check and repair issues on the C: drive.

6. DISM: Repair Windows Image

Sometimes, Windows may become corrupted in ways that sfc /scannow can’t fix. Here, DISM (Deployment Image Service and Management Tool) comes to the rescue.

  • Use DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth to find and fix potentially critical issues.

7. shutdown: Control Your PC Remotely

While shutting down or restarting the computer through GUI is standard, you might want to do it through CMD for remote operations or other purposes.

  • shutdown /s /t 0 – Shut down the computer immediately.
  • shutdown /r /t 0 – Restart the computer immediately.

8. assoc: File Extension Associations

Understand which file extensions are associated with which programs using assoc. If you’re troubleshooting or curious, this command provides a list of all file associations on your computer.

9. robocopy: Advanced File Copying

For those who deal with massive file transfers and want a more reliable method than dragging and dropping in Windows Explorer, robocopy is a robust file-copying tool integrated into Windows.

Example: robocopy C:\SourceFolder D:\DestinationFolder /E will copy all files and subfolders (including empty ones) from source to destination.

10. gpupdate /force: Update Group Policies

For those who tweak Group Policies or Local Security Policies on their computer, updating them is crucial. gpupdate /force enforces an immediate update, ensuring that the changes are applied without needing a restart.


While some might dismiss the Command Prompt as outdated or solely for tech professionals, it’s an effective tool that can make everyday tasks and troubleshooting far easier for any Windows user. These useful CMD commands are just the tip of the iceberg; as you get comfortable, a whole world of functionality within the Command Prompt awaits your exploration.

Do remember to always exercise caution while using CMD commands, especially those that make changes to system files or settings. It’s always wise to understand a command before running it. So, explore responsibly and unlock new functionalities with the powerful Command Prompt!

Leave a comment if you have any questions. If you are still on Windows 10 and thinking about upgrading to Windows 11, then you may check our post here: Windows 11: To Upgrade or Not to Upgrade?

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