I ran into a situation today where it would have been really useful to test a connection using telnet, but unfortunately, Windows 7 (and I believe Windows Vista) does not come with telnet installed. At least, that was what I had thought. It turns out that it is included, but it’s disabled. Here’s how to enable it:
- Open the Control Panel
- If it’s set to View By Category, click Uninstall a Program under the Programs heading.
- if it’s set to View By Icons. click on the Programs and Features item.
- Click on Turn Windows features on or off on the left side-bar.
- If UAC is enabled, click yes to Allow “Windows Features” to run.
- Scroll down and check Telnet Client and then click OK
Now you can telnet from the command line as you could in previous versions of Windows. Keep in mind, however, that telnet is not secure. It’s recommended to use SSH when available. I highly recommend PuTTY which is a great free telnet/SSH client.