Windows Management Instrumentation Command line (WMIC) definition

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Getting up to date with Windows 8 tools and terminology
Contributor(s): Stephen J. Bigelow

The Windows Management Instrumentation Command line (WMIC) is a software utility that allows users to performs Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) operations with a command prompt.

WMI is the Microsoft implementation of Web Based Enterprise Management (WBEM), which is built on the Common Information Model (CIM), a computer industry standard for defining device and application characteristics so that system administrators and management programs can control devices and applications from multiple manufacturers or sources in the same way. WMI provides users with information about the status of local or remote computer systems and supports such actions as configuring security settings, setting and changing system properties, setting and changing permissions for authorized users and user groups, assigning and changing drive labels, scheduling processes to run at specific times, backing up the object repository, and enabling or disabling error logging. 

WMIC operates in two modes, interactive (which allows commands to be entered one line at a time) and non-interactive (which allows commands to be scripted for use in batch files). The simplest way to launch WMIC is to open a Run dialog and type wmic. Windows users can review a complete listing of aliases and global switches by typing /? at the wmic prompt.


This was first published in April 2014

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