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hpr2783 :: The Windows "Shutdown.exe" Command Explained

A rundown of the Windows "shutdown.exe" command.

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Hosted by Claudio Miranda on Wednesday 2019-04-03 is flagged as Clean and is released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Tags: shutdown, windows, commandprompt, cmd.

Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. | Comments (2)


  • Introduced in Windows 2000 as a way to shutdown the PC via the command prompt.
  • Included in all versions since Windows 2000 all the way to Windows 10 and Windows Server 2019.
  • ReactOS, the open source binary-compatible clone of Windows, also includes the shutdown.exe command and the commands are the same.
  • Located in %windir%\System32. The variable %windir% is usually c:\windows. In ReactOS, the variable is usually c:\reactos (failed to mention this in the recording).


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Comment #1 posted on 2019-04-04T10:08:59Z by Bubba

Shutdown.exe command

Thanks for the insight. There's a scheduled power outage at work next month, and with this I can make sure everybody's workstation is shut down properly without running around and looking at power lights.

Comment #2 posted on 2019-04-06T14:12:22Z by ClaudioM

Also Useful with PsExec from Sysinternals Suite

Glad you found it useful. While you can use it alone, it's also useful with tools like PsExec from the Sysinternals suite. I might do an episode about that particular command as well. That suite has so many tools but PsExec is the one I use the most.

You could probably create a batch file or Powershell script to go through a list of hostnames and have them reboot/shutdown remotely.

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