Marty Lists brings us ShellExecute, a freeware application that is similar to the built-in START command, but in addition to normal, minimized, and maximized, you can also launch applications as hidden.
The readme contains:
Launches executables or documents according to their file type association.
The syntax of this command is:
ShellExecute.exe /F:file \[/P:parameters /W:workingdir /R:runstyle /A:action\]
/F: Specifies the file to execute.
/P: Defines the command-line parameters to pass to the executable.
/W: Defines the working directory the executable starts with.
/R: Defines the window state, default is normal. (/r:Min|Max|Hidden).
/A: Defines the action to take, default is Open (Print, Explore, etc.)
ShellExecute.exe /f:D:\\Setup.exe /p:-S -SMS /r:hidden
ShellExecute.exe /f:C:\\Boot.ini /a:print
An argument of /? displays this syntax and returns 1.
A successful completion will return 0.
Copyright 2001 Marty List