Trying to get the job done on Windows 10 while you’re totally new to the system? Let the keyboard lend a hand. With almost every task imaginable having a designated keyboard shortcut in Windows, mastering they keys is critical for optimum productivity. To help you out, we’ve compiled this comprehensive list of Windows keyboard shortcuts to boost your productivity levels.
Basic Windows Keyboard Shortcuts
If you’ve been using Windows for a long time, you’ll likely be familiar with many of these keyboard shortcuts. They have been around for years and will come in handy whether you’re navigating around Windows 7, 8 or 10.
|Windows key (⊞) + any number||Opens an app pinned to the taskbar by position (e.g Windows key (⊞) + 3 launches the app placed in the third taskbar slot)|
|Windows key (⊞) + T||Cycles you through the taskbar items (tip: press Enter key to launch)|
|Alt + F4||Closes the window you’re in|
|Alt + F4 (on the desktop)||Opens the power option|
|Alt + Tab / Windows key + tab||Switches you between all open windows, including the desktop (tip: choose among the windows individually by holding down the Alt key while tapping Tab once)|
|Windows key (⊞) + home||Minimizes all pulled up windows except the one you’re currently on|
|Windows key (⊞) + D||Minimizes all pulled up apps so you go straight to the desktop|
|Ctrl + shift + M||Restores and maximizes all minimized windows|
|Windows key (⊞) + L||Locks your PC and brings you to the lock screen|
|Windows key (⊞) + E||Launches the Windows Explorer (or File Explorer, the Mac equivalent of Finder)|
|Alt + Up button||Go up one level in Windows Explorer|
|Alt + Left button||Go to the previous folder in Windows Explorer|
|Windows key (⊞) + shift + Right (or Left button)||Move an open window to the next monitor|
|Alt + Prt Sc (print screen button)||Takes a screenshot and copies the image to the clipboard|
|Windows key (⊞) + Prt Sc||Takes and saves a screenshot to a Screenshots directory in the Pictures folder|
Exploring Windows Settings and Options
Once you’re acquainted with your new operating system and you want to look around, get to know these Windows keyboard shortcuts. They’ll take you into the system settings and options that many newbies will probably have difficulty finding. Be advised, though: don’t tinker with these unless you’re sure about the consequences.
|Alt + Enter||Shows you the properties of a selected file|
|Win key (⊞) + R||Opens the Run dialog box|
|Win key (⊞) + U||Opens the Ease of Access Center|
|Ctrl + shift + Esc||Opens the Task Manager|
|Win key (⊞) + Space||Switches input language and keyboard|
|shift + delete||Deletes files without sending them to the Recycle Bin|
Windows Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows 10
Microsoft’s latest OS brings with it cool, new features, so remember these keys to get better control of them.
|Win key (⊞) + A||Launches Action Center (Windows 10 notifications)|
|Win key (⊞) + I||Opens Windows 10 settings pane (not Control Panel)|
|Win key (⊞) + S||Opens Cortana for text input|
|Win key (⊞) + Q||Opens Cortana for voice input|
|Win key (⊞) + X||Opens the Start button context menu (shows a slew of computer management features, including Command Prompt)|
Shortcuts for Microsoft Edge
Windows 10 introduced us to Microsoft’s newest Internet browser, the Edge. Use these shortcuts to navigate around the browser faster.
|Ctrl + T||Opens a new tab|
|Ctrl + tab||Switches between all opened Edge tabs|
|Ctrl + D||Bookmarks the web page you’re on|
|Ctrl + Enter||Adds “.com” at the end of what you typed in the address bar|
|Ctrl + L||Selects the URL in the address bar so you can either copy or cut it|
Virtual Desktops Shortcuts
Access to virtual desktops is one feature that’s finally coming to Windows 10 and many have been delighted with it. You can better organize tasks and feel how it’s like having an extra invisible monitor with it, after all. Keep these keyboard shortcuts in mind to get around all opened virtual desktops.
|Win key (⊞) + Ctrl + D||Creates a new virtual desktop|
|Win key (⊞) + tab||Views all the open desktops as well as open apps on the Task View screen|
|Win key (⊞) + Ctrl + F4||Closes the current desktop|
|Win key (⊞) + Ctrl + Left cursor||Scrolls through the desktops to the left|
|Win key (⊞) + Ctrl + Right cursor||Scrolls through the open desktops to the right|
Shortcuts for Easy Snapping
Since Windows 7, the OS has allowed users to use two windows simultaneously. This feature is called snapping and you can use these shortcuts to maximize such functionality.
|Win key (⊞) + Left cursor||Snaps a window to the left|
|Win key (⊞) + Right cursor||Snaps a window to the right|
|Win key (⊞) + Up arrow||Snaps a window to the top|
|Win key (⊞) + Down arrow||Snaps the window to the bottom|
If you have opened multiple apps and want each window to align side by side, these shortcuts should make quick work of what you’re trying to achieve. You can also assign windows to quadrants and get a total of four windows open on the screen. To do this, press Win key + Up + Left arrow or Win key + Down + Right arrow and other combinations. On Windows 10, you automatically get suggestions on what open apps to fill the remaining real estate on the screen when you snap a window to a quadrant or the side.
Learning a handful of these Windows keyboard shortcuts is the way to go if you wish to accomplish more in as little time as possible within the Windows environment. They’ll help you navigate around various interfaces, change settings, get windows in position, and so much more.
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