How to Launch an Executable On Startup In Windows 10

Most programs let you decide whether you’d like to them to open up automatically when you start Windows. Naturally, this is typically only an option when it’s logical to do so – for example, having Spotify immediately open with Windows makes sense. Having Notepad open with Windows… not so much. But what happens when a program doesn’t offer you that option, but you’d like still it to start up with Windows?


There’s a few ways to achieve this, but one of my preferred options is using the Task Scheduler in Windows 10. 

  1. New Trigger dialog in the "Schedule Tasks" wizard. Allows you control when the scheduled task will be triggered.Press the Start button, and search for “Task scheduler” or “Schedule tasks.”
  2. In the “Actions” menu on the right, click “Create Task.”
  3. On the “General” tab, specify a value for the “Name” field. I suggest picking a clear name as you may have to find this task in a list later.
  4. Switch to the “Triggers” tab, and click “New…”
  5. In the “New Trigger” dialog, change the “Begin the task” field to “At startup.”
  6. Switch to the “Actions” tab, and click “New…”
  7.  In the “New Action” dialog, confirm that the “Action” field says”Start a program,” and then click “Browse” and select to the .exe you’d like to launch on boot. Then click “Open.”
  8. In the “Create Task” dialog, press OK.

That’s it. To make sure you new scheduled task is working correctly, you can:

  1. In the main “Task Scheduler” window, click “Task Scheduler Library” on the left.
  2. Find your task in the list, and select it.
  3. Click “Run” in the list on the right.

If your executable ran correctly, a final test would be actually rebooting the machine to see if it launches as expected – just to be safe.

See Also

Task Scheduler – Microsoft