Ready to improve your tech game? Are you one of those people who uses the mouse and Windows menus to do everything? You know, one of those people? Fear not, because the Honeydogs Best Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows Guide will help you learn some of the easiest ways to speed up your workday with some outstanding keyboard shortcuts for Windows.
A lot of people don’t realize that many common Windows functions can be performed with simple keyboard shortcuts. These simple two, three, or sometimes four key press combinations can greatly speed-up all of your common computing tasks. Best of all, Windows keyboard shortcuts are easy to learn and memorize.
Let’s get started with the most common Windows functions, like opening the Start Menu or Locking your computer when you don’t want the boss to see that you’ve been reading your Facebook feed all day.
Windows System Key Shortcuts
|CTRL + ESC||Open Start menu|
|ALT + TAB||Switch between open programs|
|ALT + F4||Quit program|
|SHIFT + DELETE||Delete item permanently|
|Windows Logo + L||Lock the computer|
There you go. Six simple keyboard shortcuts in Windows that will have you running at full speed in no time. Ready to move onto something just a little more complicated? Sure you are…
Common Windows Program Key Combinations
OK, here’s where things get even more useful. Don’t be that person who copies and pastes text with the mouse. If you learn no other Windows keyboard shortcuts in your life, at least make sure the ones you know are CTRL + C and CTRL + V. Those seconds saved add up over a lifetime.
Everyone, and we mean everyone, should know all about CTRL + Z. Wouldn’t life be better in general if it had an undo shortcut?
|CTRL + C||Copy|
|CTRL + X||Cut|
|CTRL + V||Paste|
|CTRL + Z||Undo|
|CTRL + B||Bold|
|CTRL + U||Underline|
|CTRL + I||Italic|
Mouse Click/Keyboard Modifier Combinations
Not all keyboard shortcuts in Windows are for replacing mouse actions. Some of the most useful ones are used in conjunction with the mouse. Here are four Windows keyboard shortcuts that modify your mouse clicks.
|SHIFT + Right Click||Displays a shortcut menu containing alternative commands|
|SHIFT + Double Click||Runs the alternate default command (the second item on the menu)|
|ALT + Double Click||Displays properties|
|SHIFT + DELETE||Deletes an item immediately without placing it in the Recycle Bin|
That last one comes in very handy when you absolutely know that you want to delete that file. Why waste time clicking again on the Recycle Bin to empty it when you really want something deleted for good? Like those really creepy midget porn files that you “accidentally” downloaded.
OK, grasshopper. Now it’s time to get all ninja and put that mouse away. Here is a list of some extremely useful keyboard-only commands that completely replace common mouse actions. Master these and you’ll be master of your desktop.
|F1||Starts Windows Help|
|F10||Activates menu bar options|
|SHIFT + F10||Opens a shortcut menu for the selected item (this is the same as right clicking an object)|
|CTRL + ESC||Opens the Start menu (use the ARROW keys to select an item)|
|CTRL + ESC or ESC||Selects the Start button (press TAB to select the taskbar, or press SHIFT + F10 for a context)|
|CTRL + SHIFT + ESC||Opens Windows Task Manager|
|ALT + DOWN ARROW||Opens a drop-down list box|
|ALT + TAB||Switch to another running program (hold down the ALT key and then press the TAB key to view the task-switching window)|
|SHIFT||Press and hold down the SHIFT key while you insert a CD-ROM to bypass the automatic-run feature|
|ALT + SPACE||Displays the main window’s System menu (from the System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimize, maximize, or close the window)|
|ALT +- (ALT+hyphen)||Displays the Multiple Document Interface (MDI) child window’s System menu (from the MDI child window’s System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimize, maximize, or close the child window)|
|CTRL + TAB||Switch to the next child window of a Multiple Document Interface (MDI) program|
|ALT + underlined letter in menu||Opens the menu|
|ALT + F4||Closes the current window|
|CTRL + F4||Closes the current Multiple Document Interface (MDI) window|
|ALT + F6||Switch between multiple windows in the same program (for example, when the Notepad Find dialog box is displayed, ALT+F6 switches between the Find dialog box and the main Notepad window)|
Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows Explorer and Folders
We spend a lot of time on our Windows computers moving files around. Whether it’s moving files from one folder to another or off of your cluttered desktop, knowing some of the basic folder shortcuts for Windows Explorer can be very helpful. Several of these are exactly the same as some of the universal program shortcuts (we told you that CTRL + C and CTRL + V were going to be helpful!)
|F3||Find all files|
|CTRL + X||Cut|
|CTRL + C||Copy|
|CTRL + V||Paste|
|SHIFT + DELETE||Delete selection immediately, without moving the item to the Recycle Bin|
|ALT + ENTER||Open the properties for the selected object|
|F4||Selects the Go To A Different Folder box and moves down the entries in the box (if the toolbar is active in Windows Explorer)|
|F5||Refreshes the current window|
|F6||Moves among panes in Windows Explorer|
|CTRL + G||Opens the Go To Folder tool (in Windows 95 Windows Explorer only)|
|CTRL + Z||Undo the last command|
|CTRL + A||Select all the items in the current window|
|BACKSPACE||Switch to the parent folder|
|SHIFT + click + Close button||For folders, close the current folder plus all parent folders|
Advanced Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows Explorer
If you spend a lot of time dealing with files in Windows Explorer, you should also learn these advanced tricks.
|Numeric Keypad *||Expands everything under the current selection|
|Numeric Keypad +||Expands the current selection|
|Numeric Keypad –||Collapses the current selection|
|RIGHT ARROW||Expands the current selection if it is not expanded, otherwise goes to the first child|
|LEFT ARROW||Collapses the current selection if it is expanded, otherwise goes to the parent|
There you have it. A comprehensive list of keyboard shortcuts for Windows. Learn and memorize them and you’ll be zipping through your day with a lot more speed and a little less carpal tunnel syndrome.