Top 7 Ways to Fix Com­mand Prompt Not Work­ing on Win­dows 11

Pankil Shah

Command Prompt is a powerful utility on Windows and is often underutilized. If you use Command Prompt daily, you'll realize how powerful it is, especially on the new Windows 11. But if the Command prompt has stopped working or opening whenever you summon it, you'll need to troubleshoot that problem.

Top Ways to Fix Command Prompt Not Working on Windows 11

We have compiled a list of workable solutions that should get the Command Prompt to work again on your Windows 11 computer. So, let’s begin.

1. Check Antivirus

Sometimes, antivirus programs on your PC can be too cautious and end up quarantining otherwise safe files. As it turns out, Command Prompt not working can occur if those quarantined files include the files required by the Command Prompt. Thus, you can start by disabling the antivirus program temporarily on your PC to see if that gets Command Prompt to work again.

2. Create a Shortcut

If you’re unable to open the Command Prompt due to your troubles with the Start menu or the Windows Search, then you can try creating a shortcut for it. Here’s how.

Step 1: Right-click anywhere on the desktop, go to New, and select Shortcut from the sub-menu.

Create New Shortcut on Windows

Step 2: In the Create Shortcut window, under the location box, type in cmd.exe and hit Next.

Create Shortcut for Command Prompt

Step 3: Provide a suitable name for the shortcut and hit Finish.

Name Shortcut

You can use this shortcut to open Command Prompt.

3. Perform SFC and DISM Scan

Corrupted or missing system files is another reason Command Prompt may not work for you. If that's the case, you can try running an SFC or System File Checker scan your PC to detect and fix such system files. Here's how.

Step 1: Open the Start menu, type in Windows PowerShell, and press Enter.

Launch Windows Power Shell

Step 2: Type the command given below and press Enter.

sfc /scannow
SFC Scan in Power Shell

This process might take a while. If the scan can detect and fix files, you’ll see a message that reads ‘Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files and successfully repaired them’.

If the SFC scan can't find any issues, you can try performing a DISM or Deployment Image Servicing and Management scan instead. DISM can repair system images and files on your Windows like an SFC scan. Here's how to run it.

Launch PowerShell with admin rights again and enter the following commands one by one.

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

Once done, restart your PC and see if you can access Command Prompt now.

4. Update the System Environment Variables Path

If there are issues with the environment variables path on your PC, then Command Prompt might fail to run commands. To remedy that, you can create a new path by following the steps below.

Step 1: Press Windows key + R to launch the Run dialog box. Type in sysdm.cpl om the box and press Enter.

Open System Properties

Step 2: Switch to the Advanced tab and click on the Environment Variables option.

Environment Variables

Step 3: In the following window, select Path variable and click on Edit.

Edit Path

Step 4: Next, click on New and enter the following path.

C:\Windows\SysWow64\
Edit Environment Variable

Reboot your computer and check if you can launch the Command Prompt.

5. Create New User Account

If you still can’t use the Command Prompt, then it might be an issue with your user account files. So you can a new user account on your computer to check if that works.

Step 1: Press Windows key + I to launch the Settings app.

Step 2: Switch to the Accounts tab and click on the Family & other users.

Account Settings on Windows 11

Step 3: Under Other users, click on the Add account button.

Create a New User Account

Step 4: Next, click on 'I don't have this person's sign-in information' here.

Create New Account for Windows 11

From there, follow the on-screen instructions to create a new user account on Windows. Once created, log in with the newly created user account and see if Command Prompt works fine.

6. Try Safe Mode

Sometimes, third-party apps and programs on your PC can conflict with Windows 11 processes and lead to issues. If you really need to use the Command Prompt, you can boot your computer in Safe Mode.

Read on to learn how to enter Safe Mode on Windows 11.

Step 1: Open the Start menu, type in System Configuration, and press Enter.

Open System Configuration

Step 2: In the System Configuration window, switch to the Boot tab. Under Boot options, select Safe boot and press OK.

Safe Boot on Windows 11

Step 3: When prompted, click on Restart to enter Safe Mode.

Once you’re in the Safe Mode, check if you can access Command Prompt. If you can access it, try removing some recently installed apps and programs to check if that helps to get the Command Prompt running.

7. Perform System Restore

Your Windows 11 PC comes with a handy System Restore feature that periodically takes a backup of the entire system. You can use it to revert to the point when the Command Prompt was working fine. With it, you’ll be able to undo the bad changes made to your system. Here’s how.

Step 1: Open the Start Menu, type in create a restore point and click on the first result that appears.

Open System Restore

Step 2: Under the System Protection tab, click on the System Restore button.

System Properties Window

Step 3: You can either go with the recommended restore point or pick one yourself by choosing the second option.

Perform a System Restore

Pick a restore point when the Command Prompt runs fine and hit Next. Now follow the on-screen instructions to perform a system restore.

Command and Control

Command Prompt is an essential part of Windows, but when it doesn't run, it can be a cause for concern. Hopefully, the above solutions have helped you fix the problem.


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Pankil Shah

Written By

Pankil Shah

Pankil is a Civil Engineer by profession who started his journey as a writer at EOTO.tech. He recently joined Guiding Tech as a freelance writer to cover how-tos, explainers, buying guides, tips and tricks for Android, iOS, Windows, and Web.