Windows .msc files overview

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 10, 2017

MSC files are snap-in control files that are associated with the Microsoft Management Console on Windows machines to run administrative tasks.

You may run some msc files like services.msc or gpedit.msc regularly, but there are plenty more that you can run or create on Windows client and server machines to speed up administrative processes.

Microsoft Windows ships with native .msc files integrated in the operating system, and support for the creation or importing of custom snap-in control files.

The Microsoft Management Console (MMC) was released originally with the Windows 98 Resource Kit, but Microsoft did integrate it in all versions of Windows released afterwards.

computer management msc files

MMC is a framework for administrative tools in which these tools operate. It comes with a graphical user interface, and supports the creation, running, and saving of administrative jobs.

The framework hosts tools, and displays them in its interface by using so-called snap-ins and extension snap-ins. What makes the Microsoft Management Console that flexible is that administrators may create and assign tools to specific user groups, computer systems, or users.

Note: This is a second part of our series about Windows administrative tools. We covered the Windows Control Panel, and the administrative files that you could run to launch various Control Panel applets directly in the first.

List of Windows .msc files

msc files

The default location of .msc files is Windows\System32. You can run any of the files with the shortcut Windows-R, typing the msc file name and extension, and hitting the Enter-key on the keyboard.

Msc File Console Description
azman.msc Authorization Manager Manage Authorization Stores
certlm.msc Certificates Local Computer Loads the list of certificates of the local computer.
certmgr.msc Certificates Loads the list of certificates of the user
comexp.msc Component Services Loads Component Services, Event Viewer, and Services.
compmgmt.msc Computer Management Includes System Tools (Task Scheduler, Event Viewer, Shared Folders, Local Users and Groups, Performance and Device Manager), Storage (Disk Management), and Services and Applications (Services and WMI Control)
devmgmt.msc Device Manager Opens the Device Manager to manage hardware and devices.
diskmgmt.msc Disk Management Opens Disk Management to administrate connected storage devices.
eventvwr.msc Event Viewer Opens the Event Viewer which displays operating system, software, and hardware events.
fsmgmt.msc Shared Folders Loads the list of shared folders, sessions, and open files
gpedit.msc Group Policy Editor Loads the Group Policy Editor to manage system policies
lusrmgr.msc Local Users and Groups Interface to manage local users and user groups.
perfmon.msc Performance Monitor Loads the Windows Performance Monitor
printmanagement.msc Print Management Manage printers.
rsop.msc Resultant Set of Policies List policies, full results only available through command line tool gpresult
secpol.msc Local Security Policy Loads policies such as account policies, public key policies, or advanced audit policy configuration
services.msc Services Manager Loads the list of installed services to manage them.
taskschd.msc Task Scheduler Loads the Task Scheduler to manage tasks
tpm.msc Trusted Platform Module Management Manage the TPM on the local device.
wf.msc Windows Firewall Starts Windows Firewall with Advanced Security.
wmimgmt.msc WMI Management Configure and Control the Windows Management Instrumentation Service.

List of Windows Server MMC Files

Msc File Console
adfs.msc Active Directory Federation Services
AdRmsAdmin.msc Active Directory Rights Management Services
adsiedit.msc ADSI Edit
certim.msc Local Computer Certificates
certsrv.msc Certification Authority
certtmpl.msc Certification Templates
ciadv.msc Indexing Service
cluadmin.msc Failover Cluster Manager
da6to4.msc Network Interfaces Performance Monitor
daihttps.msc HTTPS Traffic Performance Monitor
daipsecdos.msc IPSec Performance Monitor
daisatapmsc ISATAP Performance Monitor
dfsmgmt.msc DFS Management
dhcpmgmt.msc DHCP Management
dnsmgmt.msc DNS Manager
domain.msc Active Directory Domains and Trust
dsa.msc Active Directory Users and Computers.
dssite.msc Active Directory Sites and Services
fsrm.msc File Server Resource Manager
fxsadmin.msc Microsoft Fax Service Manager
gpmc.msc Group Policy Management
gpme.msc Group Policy Mangement Editor
gptedit.msc Group Policy Starter GPO Editor
hcscfg.msc Health Registration Authority
idmumgmt.msc Microsoft Identity Management for Unix
iis.msc Internet Information Services Manager
iis6.msc Internet Information Services Manager 6.0
lsdiag.msc RD Licensing Diagnoser
napclcfg.msc NAP Client Configuration
mfsmgmt.msc Services for Network File System
nps.msc Network Policy Server
ocsp.msc Online Responder
pkiview.msc Enterprise PKI
remoteprograms.msc RemoteApp Manager
rrasmgmt.msc Routing and Remote Access
sanmmc.msc Storage Manager for SANs
sbmgr.msc Remote Desktop Connection Manager
scanmanagement.msc Scan Management
servermanager.msc Server Manager
storagemgmt.msc Share and Storage Management
storexpl.msc Storage Explorer
tapimgmt.msc Telephony
tsadmin.msc Remote Desktop Services Manager
tsconfig.msc Remote Desktop Session Host Configuration
tsgateway.msc RD Gateway Manager
tsmmc.msc Remote Desktops
virtmgmt.msc Hyper-V Manager
wbadmin.msc Windows Server Backup
Wdsmgmt-msc Windows Deployment Services
winsmgmt.msc WINS
wbiadmin.msc Windows Server Backup
wsrm.msc Windows System Resource Manager
wsus.msc Update Services


Windows .msc files overview
Article Name
Windows .msc files overview
MSC files are snap-in control files that are associated with the Microsoft Management Console on Windows machines to run administrative tasks.
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  1. Steven Mason said on August 1, 2020 at 3:55 am

    Where can I get a printout or file listing the response to the command “services.msc”?

    1. Jorge Luis said on December 3, 2020 at 1:22 am

      Good day!

      You can use sc command for that, you can use for drivers as well. To export to a file:

      sc queryex type=service state=all > printout_services.txt

      SC is a command line program used for communicating with the Service Control Manager and services.

      For more help type from the command line sc /?

      I hope this helps.

  2. rex orda said on May 13, 2018 at 3:57 am

    I lost the option to create a folder on my computer
    Because of the settings I’ve changed
    Someone knows what the command is for returning the option
    Create a folder

    1. rex orda said on May 13, 2018 at 10:52 am

      my change in the MMC was only in the SECURITY in WINDOWS SETTING
      and i am the Administrator in my pc
      Thanks. rex orda

  3. dmacleo said on June 10, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    note: some (group policy for example) not available on many home systems, pro versions and higher usually.
    I use gpedit often here

  4. Tom Hawack said on June 10, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    I really appreciate these gHacks series, so instructive. ‘Windows administrative tools’ is a great topic; I felt more concerned with the first ‘Windows Control Panel’ article though because cpl files go back to Win XP, so learning more about these msc files is a contribution to my numerous lacks. I did notice however that I had installed links to Windows services connecting to msc files, without really realizing it, msc being a rather occult reference here. Now I understand/know better.

    To paraphrase CNN’s Richard Quest, “What a profitable day!” — Humm!

  5. Jeff said on June 10, 2017 at 2:44 pm

    Tip: Just type .msc in Classic Shell’s search box and get all of them. You don’t have to type their full name too. devmg…. will return devmgmt.msc.

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