How to Fix “not recognized as an internal or external command” in Windows 10

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Introduction

Recently I ran a “NETDOM JOIN” command but received “NETDOM is not recognized as an internal or external command”.

This guide details how I fixed this problem.

Steps to Fix “Not Recognized as an Internal or External Command”

Here are the high-level steps I took to resolve “not recognized as an internal or external command” error:

  • Confirm that then command is in %systemroot%\system32
  • Configure Path Environment Variable
  • Run DISM and SFC Commands

1
Confirm that the Command is in %systemroot%\system32

Most Windows commands are located in system32 folder. If you receive command not recognized error, the first thing to do is to confirm that command is in this folder.

Here are the detailed steps:

  • Type %systemroot%\system32 in the search bar. Then click the folder in the search results.
Steps to Fix "Not Recognized as an Internal or External Command"
  • Check if the command exists in this folder.

If the command exists in %systemroot%\system32, then the problem is an environmental variable issue. Proceed to step 2. Otherwise, some Windows files may be missing or corrupt. In that case, proceed to step 3.

2
Configure Environment Variable

Perform this task only if the program that gave “not recognized as an internal or external command” error is in system32 folder.

Here are steps:

  • Right-click Windows 10 start menu. Then select File Explorer.
not recognized as an internal or external command
  • When File Explorer opens, right-click This PC and select Properties.
not recognized as an internal or external command
  • At System settings, click Advanced system settings.
not recognized as an internal or external command
  • When Advanced System Properties opens, click Environment Variables.
  • Then, at Environment Variables settings, click Path. Then click Edit.
  • Finally, confirm that %systemroot%\system32 is on the list. If it is not, click New and add it to the list.

3
Run DISM and SFC Commands

Perform the task in this section if the program that gave “not recognized as an internal or external command” is not in %systemroot%\system32.

The steps will repair Windows 10..

  • Type cmd into the search bar. Then click Run as administrator.
not recognized as an internal or external command
  • At the User Account Control confirmation, click Yes.
not recognized as an internal or external command
  • At command prompt, type this command and press enter. Wait for SFC to finish and report back…
SFC /SCANNOW
  • When the SFC command completes, it may report that “Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violation”. Or that it found and replaced corrupt file. It may also report that it found corrupt files but could not fix the problem.
  • If SFC reports that it did not find integrity violations or that it found but could not fix it, type the command below. Then press enter.
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Restorehealth 

Wait for the command to finish then restart your computer.

  • When the command completes successfully (gets to 100%), restart your PC and check.

Conclusion

The steps in this guide should fix “not recognized as an internal or external command”.

If you have any question or comment use the “Leave a Reply” form found at the end of this page.

For more Windows fixes visit our Windows 10 Fix page.

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