Keyboard Shortcuts

For years I have been perplexed by the people that use their mouse for absolutely everything when are a number of perfectly good keyboard shortcuts that will do the job in a fraction of the time.Why people don’t take advantage of these shortcuts is arguable however I personally believe the primary reason is that most just don’t realise there is another way, otherwise why else would you hunt around for an item on a menu bar if you can quickly hit a key and achieve the same effect?

Funnily enough, now that Microsoft have hidden or moved all my commonly used menus in Windows Vista I find myself relying on these short cuts a great deal more than I used to.I’m sure that trying to convey these to you in a list format probably isn’t going to make this one of the most exciting Click articles that I’ve ever written but I do know that it’s one of the most useful.

To point out the obvious, these short cuts usually require you to press two keys at once and the ALT, CTRL, Windows and Shift keys are all located down the bottom left hand side of the keyboard.I have split the shortcuts into several sections depending on where they are going to be applied and don’t worry about which version of Windows you own as most share the same shortcut keys.


Alt+EnterView properties for the selected item

Alt+EscCycle through windows in the order they were opened

Alt+F4Close the active window

Alt+ SpacebarOpen the shortcut menu for the active window

Alt+TabSwitch between open windows

Shift+InsertHold this down whilst inserting a CD and it WON’T autoboot

EndDisplay the bottom of the active window

HomeDisplay the top of the active window

Windows keyDisplays the start menu

Windows key+DMinimizes all windows

Windows key + EOpens a new Explorer window

Windows key + FDisplays the find all files box

Windows key + LLocks your computer

Windows key + RDisplays the Run command box


Shift+DeleteDelete the selected item permanently without placing the item in the recycle bin

Left arrowCollapse the current selection if it is expanded, or select the parent folder

Right arrowExpand the current selection if it is collapsed, or select the first sub folder


Ctrl+CCopy an item to the clipboard

Ctrl+XCut an item to the clipboard

Ctrl+VPaste an item from the clipboard

Internet Browsing

F11Full screen mode

Ctrl+Mouse forwardZoom in

Ctrl+Mouse backwardZoom out

Ctrl+0Reset zoom level

Alt+Home Go to homepage

Ctrl+TOpen a new tab

Ctrl+TabSwitch between tabs

Ctrl+W Close tab

Alt+DGo straight to the address bar

Alt+LeftGo back to the previously viewed page

Alt+RightNavigate forward through viewed pages

Navigating to menu options within programs is also easy when using keyboard shortcuts.To select the edit menu press ‘Alt+E’ together, for the file menu press ‘Alt+F’ and so on then once the menu option has been opened you can navigate around them using the cursor keys then select an option with the enter key.

I did say that this wouldn’t be Shakespeare but cut out the list above, have a play around, and I promise you’ll find at least some of these key combinations useful.Once you’ve used them a couple of times it will then become second nature to hit the keyboard shortcut rather than relying solely on your mouse.



About the Author – Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.