Window on the Windows key: some great keyboard shortcuts

Windows key

Is the Windows key a forgotten key on your keyboard? Is your hand glued to your mouse or do you try and use any keyboard shortcuts? I must admit, I’ve never been one to use the Windows key much and I’ve been missing out on some cool shortcuts.

Apart from the obvious function of opening the Start menu, the Windows key can be used in combination with others for some great shortcuts. I’ve tried them out and this is how they work in Windows 7. Many of these shortcuts will also work in Vista and some work in Windows XP.

Win + Tab: displays the apps open on your superbar (really cool 3D effect in Windows 7); keep pressing Tab to cycle through them and release keys to open that window  (Alt + Tab is nice too; keep your finger on Alt and move your mouse over the windows; click to select one)

Win + E: opens My Computer

Win + D: shows the desktop; pressing the same key combination again takes you back where you were

Win + F: opens Windows search; or if you have Coperic Desktop Search installed, that opens instead

Win + R: displays the Run command box

Win + Pause/Break: displays system information in Windows 7

Win + U: displays the Ease of Access Center (try the Magnifier tool)

Win + G: shows your gadgets if you have any installed

Win + L: locks your desktop

Win + S: select and save a screenshot to Microsoft OneNote (if it’s installed)

Win + T: cycle through the apps on your superbar

Win + N: opens Microsoft OneNote

Win + P: opens the display control dialogue box

Win + F1: displays Windows help

Win + 1: Maximises or opens the leftmost application on your superbar in Windows 7. If Word is the first application on your superbar, and say you have three documents open in Word, you can cycle through them by repeatedly pressing Win + 1.

Win + 2 maximizes or opens the second application and so on. Works right through to Win + 0 for the 10th app along your superbar.

Hope all this helps you to be more productive.

Image credit: Jeremy Brooks

One Response

  1. Mrs Moody@video tutorial blog Says:

    Oh oh This is great post, I am a fan of keyboard shortcuts, but the different between the key position in windows and Mac makes me confused sometimes since i have been windows user and now i am trying Mac. Thanks for this info. Greetings from Germany

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