Windows: How to elevate the Command Prompt to System Rights

Have you ever tried to configure something on a windows system as Administrator and still got a permission denied?

While the Administrator is powerful, he still can't do everything. There is an account that is even more powerful, it is called SYSTEM. So how could you run something as SYSTEM? Here is how:

  • Start a command prompt as Administrator
  • From Sysinternals, download psexec.exe and put it on the C: drive
  • In the command prompt, navigate to the directory with psexec.exe
  • Run "psexec.exe -i -s cmd.exe" (without the quotes)
  • Now a second command prompt opens with SYSTEM privileges
  • Type "whoami" to confirm that you are SYSTEM

Be careful as with these rights, you can easily destroy a system.

2 thoughts on “Windows: How to elevate the Command Prompt to System Rights”

  1. Thanks.

    The second command prompt will not open. I keep receiving the error message:

    Error creating key file. A device attached to the system is not functioning.

  2. thanks! I was trying to remember what command parameters I needed for psexec. Strangely enough, the command I was trying to run ("netsh wlan show wlanreport", without the quotes) still didn't work in the new prompt. It still told me "You must run this command from a command prompt with administrator privilege". Any idea what to do about that? Aside from tech support 101 "turn it off and back on again", I'm pretty much out of ideas myself

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