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Windows 10 Command Prompt

The command prompt in Windows 10 introduced a lot of new functionality.

Enabling the new Functionality

If you find that the new features do not work for you, then you need to ensure that you aren't using the legacy console.

To do that, open a command prompt, then right click on the C:\ Icon in the top left corner and choose Properties. Deselect the option to use the legacy console and then restart the command prompt window.

Window Behaviour

The buffer can now be resized dynamically and the text inside will adjust. If you make the window smaller than standard, then it will automatically wrap to match the new size.


If you want the window to be transparent, perhaps to allow it to sit to one side while you work on something else then you can adjust the transparency option on the fly. From the keyboard, CTRL-SHIFT and + / - (plus and minus)

Copy and Paste

Shortcut keys for Copy and Paste are now available. CTRL-C (Copy) and CTRL-V (Paste). CTRL-INS (Copy) and SHIFT-INS (paste) are also available.

When copying the text to the clipboard, the line breaks will be removed for you automatically.

CTRL-C will still work to break a running command if that is the current state of the session.

Selecting Text - Mark Mode

If you want to test this new functionality, type Help and press enter. That will give you a multiple screen of text which you can then use to test with.

To select text in a command prompt (for copying) you used to have to select Mark from the menu. With Windows 10 you can now use CTRL-M to enter mark mode.

Once in Mark mode, use the cursor keys to move the indicator to where you want to select text. You can also use the mouse to select the start point.

Page Down and Page Up will allow you to quickly move through the text to find where you want to start.
CTRL-HOME moves the cursor to the start of the buffer and CTRL-END moves it to the end.

Once you have found where you want to start selecting text, hold down SHIFT while pressing either the left or right cursor. You can also use the mouse to select the text, clicking once to mark the start of the selection then using the keyboard, or just regular click and drag to select.

To select text quicker, if you hold down CTRL, SHIFT and then press the right or left cursor key, then the entire word is selected. Pressing Up or Down cursor instead will select the entire line. End and Home also have functionality with CTRL and SHIFT - selecting all text to the end of the buffer from the selection point or all text prior to the selection point.

Once selected, the copy combination can be used.

As always, ESC exits Mark mode.

Selecting Text with CTRL-A

The CTRL-A command will select text in one of two ways depending on the current state of the prompt.

If the prompt has no other commands typed in, then CTRL-A selects everything in the buffer.

However if you have entered a command, then CTRL-A will select the text that you have just entered.

This could be very useful if you have been testing a long command, find one that works and want to copy it to save elsewhere. Use the cursor up key to repeat the command, then press CTRL-A.

Reviewing Output of a command

If the command returns a long list of output which you want to review there are new shortcuts allowing you to move through it.

CTRL-Up Arrow and CTRL-Down Arrow will move up and down by one line.

CTRL-Page Up and CTRL-Page Down will move a single page in the output history.

Finding Text

You can now search for text from the result window - no more dumping output to a text file.


After finding the text, it should already be selected, ready for copying.

Command History

If you have been entering a lot of commands, you now have an additional way of recalling the command. As well as pressing up as with the legacy console, you can now press F7. A new window will appear with the command history for that session, select the one that you want to reuse.

Closing the Window

ALT-F4 has been implemented to close the Window.

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Last Page Update: 01/08/2015

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