Tag Archives: Explorer

Open Master Control Panel using PowerShell

This easter-egg or hidden control panel can be accessed by referencing its GUID. The Master Control panel is also known as GodMode, and has been referenced so often that it even has its own Wikipedia page now.

GodMode

It works by using a special GUID that gives access to almost all administrative tasks that are possible on a Windows system from a single window. Opening a control panel item by referencing a GUID is something that is supported by Microsoft. For example opening the ‘Mouse Properties’ control panel app can be done as shown in the next example:

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explorer.exe --% shell:::{6C8EEC18-8D75-41B2-A177-8831D59D2D50}

The –% is used to escape any characters that come after it, this is done to ensure the brackets are not processed as a script block. This alternative notation achieves the same result:

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explorer.exe shell:::`{6C8EEC18-8D75-41B2-A177-8831D59D2D50`}

Now if we would like to open the Master Control Panel, the following code can be executed:

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explorer.exe --% shell:::{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}

It is also possible to create a special folder to be able to open this folder straight from your desk, the next code sample will create this folder for you:

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'GodMode.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}' | ForEach-Object {
    New-Item -ItemType Directory -Path (Join-Path $env:userprofile\desktop $_)
}

For more information about GUID and the related articles or about the Master Control Panel or GodMode have a look at the following links:

Master Control Panel
Canonical Names of Control Panel Items
Windows Master Control Panel shortcut
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New article on PowerShell Magazine: Use Shell.Application to determine which folder is open in File Explorer

Explorer

To determine which Windows are currently open in Explorer the Shell.Application Com Object can be used. Specifically the Windows() method of this object. It can retrieve the open Windows of both explorer as well as Internet Explorer. The full article  is available on PowerShell Magazine : Use Shell.Application to determine which folder is open in File Explorer

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$ShellApp = New-Object -ComObject Shell.Application
$ShellApp.Windows() | Where-Object {$_.Name -eq 'File Explorer'} | 
Select-Object LocationName,LocationURL

For more articles like this, have a look at the External Articles section of my blog, it contains all the articles I have posted on external sources such as PowerShell Magazine.

Links in this Article
PSTip: Use Shell.Application to determine which folder is open in File Explorer
PowerShell Magazine
External Articles
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