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Cannot run some programs from command prompt

Posted on 2004-10-12
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
When I try to run ipconfig, notepad, regedit from the command prompt it tells me its  not a recognized internal, external or batch command.

But the files are there, my path is not altered in anyway.  If I move to the sysroot\sys32 directory, the programs run fine.  Or if I use the absolute path, they run.

I'm going to repair install when I get back from work tonight, just wanted to see if anyone out there has run into this before and knew what to do.  Thanks
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Question by:askpcguy909
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Expert Comment

by:Pete Long
ID: 12289244
even if you start >run >cmd {enter}

ipconfig?
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by:askpcguy909
ID: 12289269
Yes.  Here is a few attempts.

C:\>ipconfig
'ipconfig' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.

C:\>notepad
'notepad' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.

C:\>c:\windows\notepad

C:\>
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Expert Comment

by:Pete Long
ID: 12289297
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by:Pete Long
ID: 12289321
bah sorry wrong link this one http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/exefile.htm
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by:jkr
ID: 12289351
Try

echo %PATH%

on the command prompt. That environment variable *should* contain your system32 directory. If not, add it.
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Expert Comment

by:Debsyl99
ID: 12289360
Hi
I'd check this too. I think that you may just need to set the paths to the files you're trying to run first. Make sure you add the correct path to the system32 directory,
How to set the path in Windows 2000 / Windows XP.
http://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch000549.htm

Deb :))

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Expert Comment

by:Fermion
ID: 12293115
Your path is INVALID due to the DEFAULT directory presented at the run>cmd.
Do this: Click START>RUN>type cmd
Then: type "cd c:\" without the qoutes. This will bring you to the raw C:\ prompt.
Now type your command.
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by:Fermion
ID: 12293195
cd means "change directory"
Don't forget to include a space between cd and c:\
If done properly the next line should look automatically appear and look like this:
C:\
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by:askpcguy909
ID: 12294174
I have 8 years of DOS experience and overall 10 years of computing experience.

C:\Documents and Settings\Admin>cd\

C:\>notepad
'notepad' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.

C:\>path
PATH=%SystemRoot%\system32;%SystemRoot%;%SystemRoot%\system32\WBEM;%SYSTEMROOT%\
COMMAND;%SYSTEMROOT%\SYSTEM;C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\version3.0\bin

C:\>c:\windows\notepad

C:\>See that worked.
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Debsyl99 earned 250 total points
ID: 12297772
Hmm -

From your post - Presumably this is what's output when you type path at a command prompt :

PATH=%SystemRoot%\system32;%SystemRoot%;%SystemRoot%\system32\WBEM;%SYSTEMROOT%\
COMMAND;%SYSTEMROOT%\SYSTEM;C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\version3.0\bin

Sounds like a problem with expnding the %systemroot% variable maybe?

%SystemRoot% is not expanded in the Path
http://www.jsiinc.com/SUBA/tip0400/rh0474.htm

Deb :))
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by:Debsyl99
ID: 12297869
In your case (XP) it should be C:\WINDOWS
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by:askpcguy909
ID: 12305508
Debsyl99, no that did not work.  And thanks, I know the systemroot dir for windows xp.

Now HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment\path is reg_expand_sz with the value of:

%SystemRoot%\system32;%SystemRoot%;%SystemRoot%\system32\WBEM;%SYSTEMROOT%\COMMAND;%SYSTEMROOT%\SYSTEM;C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\version3.0\bin

And it still doesnt work.  Anyone second my notion to repair install?
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by:Debsyl99
ID: 12305696
"" And thanks, I know the systemroot dir for windows xp."" - I think we understand that. I don't think anyone here thinks that you are somehow less than able when it comes to this. You do need to bear in mind that it isn't always easy to ascertain the level of a person's ability from a few sentences if you're not psychic. Posting the correct directory was being thorough, an EE habit as once/if this becomes a PAQ people may read it who maybe don't know as much as you do.
Options to try are system file checker - sfc /scannow (again being thorough) , repair install, re-apply service pack,
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by:askpcguy909
ID: 12309085
I apologize, this is frustrating for me beacuse I carry myself as a pc near-expert.  And now I got a problem I can't solve.

Now, sfc doesn't like any xp pro cd I feed it at all, so thats out.

I'll repair install after work today.
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by:Debsyl99
ID: 12309584
No probs - it does do your head in when you feel you should be able to fix it and you can't - I know that feeling well. Everything can be fixed (even if it ends up in a bin - problems gone at least;-)) - It's just not always possible to do it the easy way. Anyway we haven't fixed it either so you should feel better!

Definitely sounds like an issue with the %systemroot% variable - maybe a slight registry corruption somewhere? I'd maybe re-install the service pack first - what are you on SP1? Anyway, I'm out of options really on this one - (nothing in your event logs remotely relevant is there?)
So whatever call you make is probably as good as anything I could suggest now, Sorry

Deb :))
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