How to Launch Microsoft Excel Using PowerShell


Knowing how to launch Microsoft Excel via PowerShell is an essential skill for system administrators and software engineers. Whether it’s launching Office applications or running scripts, being familiar with the capabilities of PowerShell can make work easier and faster by enabling automated tasks.

In this blog post, we’ll walk you through how to use PowerShell commands to launch Microsoft Excel.


Using Start-Process

Once you are in PowerShell environment, you can type in Start-Process followed by the path of your Microsoft Excel executable file.

In this case, we are going to open Excel where the executable file is physically located at C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\Office16\EXCEL.EXE, you would type following script into PowerShell.

Start-Process 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\Office16\EXCEL.EXE'

The Start-Process command will launch Microsoft Excel immediately.

Using Invoke-Item

Another useful command is Invoke-Item which can also be used to open specific item from within PowerShell. To use this command, simply enter it followed by the path of Microsoft Excel executable file.

Invoke-Item 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\Office16\EXCEL.EXE'

This will automatically launch Microsoft Excel.

Using Call Operator (&)

Call Operator & can also be used to open Microsoft Excel. The pattern is the same with previous example where the operator must be followed by the path to the executable file.

& 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\Office16\EXCEL.EXE'


Using Windows PowerShell commands makes opening Microsoft Excel incredibly easy and efficient, just remember we can use Start-Process, Invoke-Item or Call Operator & command to open the application.