First thing in my mind pops up when I listen a word shortcut is Shortcut can be Risky and Dangerous. But believe me, while you have to work with keyboard for hours, these keyboard shortcuts are great keys to work with. By using keyboard shortcuts you will not save your hours of time but it can be very useful while you have to work for hours.
If you don’t use keyboard shortcuts then you must have to work with mouse clicks and it can be little time consuming compared to keyboard shortcuts. Keyboard shortcuts are just shortcuts but if you use shortcuts then you don’t need to deal with navigation menu or reaching for the mouse and you can leave your mouse as it is. Here is the list of basic but Very Useful Windows Keyboard Shortcuts.
Windows Keyboard Shortcuts – Ctrl (12 Shortcuts)
Ctrl + C: Used for Copy
No matter what task you are performing, this shortcut can copy your stuff. If you want to copy folder just select folder(s) and press Ctrl + C and your folder will be copied. Same thing goes with text in like notepad, msword, powerpoint etc. You can also use this shortcut while copying files like audio, video, images or any other files etc.
Ctrl + V: Used for Paste
If you have copied something, later you will need to paste it somewhere. Just find your location to paste and Press Ctrl + V (obviously, after copying your stuff). You will not need to use paste option from context menu (right click menu).
Ctrl + P: Used for Print
It’s little bit tough to find Print option in every program. Because if you have noticed, print option is placed at different places in different programs like Windows Photo Viewer, Acrobat PDF Reader, Excel, Web browser etc (see the image given below). But to print something, Ctrl + P shortcut will work in same way in all programs without searching for print button.
Ctrl + Z: Used for Undo
If you have told something to any person, you will not be able to take your words back. You just spoke it and you can’t change your words. But in our computer programs, we can rollback our action. Process of roll backing any action is known as Undo. For example, if you delete folder of your childhood pics, you can get it back by using keyboard shortcut of undo. You can use this shortcut in any program of windows.
Ctrl + S: Used to Save
I think, this shortcut don’t need to be explained. Because I have seen that most of the people are familiar with it. In spite of that, let me tell you that this keyboard shortcut is used to save changes to a file. When I was in the learning phase, I was very annoyed with the habit of not saving my task. And because of that I had to do my task again from scratch. But later I used to with this keyboard shortcut and now in my daily routine it saves much more time of mine.
Ctrl + A: Used for ‘Select All’
Suppose you want to copy 2500-3000 images in a folder, how will you do that? Obviously, you select it and by dragging the mouse. But what if you can select those images by pressing only two keys from keyboard, will you choose to drag the mouse? Nope. Ctrl + A keyboard shortcut used to select all of the stuff within a file or folder. This shortcut can select all of the text from notepad, word, excel sheet, browser page etc and it can select thousands of files in folder within a second (without touching a mouse).
Ctrl + O: Used to Open a File
This keyboard shortcut is used to open a file. Press Ctrl + O and a dialog box will open, go to a location where your file is stored. One another thing to tell you is, if you use this shortcut while your file is unsaved then it will prompt you to save your work before opening the another file. Please note that you can open a file from dialog box in two ways.
(1) Select your file, then click Open button.
(2) Double click on your file.
Ctrl + W: Used to Close a Window
This shortcut will act as a Close button of window. By using this shortcut you can close the window like file explorer, browser tab, control panel window etc. But this shortcut will not work in dialog boxes and in programs.
Ctrl + F: Used to Find
What would you do if you want to find a single word from a text file of 1000 words? It’s like, find a item like needle from mountain sized data. But, Ctrl + F will do this for you very easily. Yesss, this keyboard shortcut is designed to find a stuff from very huge size data. You can use this shortcut in browser, text programs, file explorer etc.
Ctrl + N: Open New Window
I think you get the idea about this keyboard shortcut by reading the title. If not, let’s continue. This shortcut is used to open a new window from active program. If you use this shortcut in google chrome, it will open new chrome window. If it’s notepad, new empty notepad file will be opened. if it’s windows file explorer, it will open file explorer window. But the difference with file explorer is, it will open window as active window path/location. Like if you are at “D:\Images\Birthday Pics” then new window path will be same.
Ctrl + Shift + Esc: Used to Open Task Manager
Task Manager Utility is the program which displays all open Applications, Processes, CPU and Memory Performance and many more useful stuffs. This shortcut is used to open task manager. Before I knew this shortcut, I was used to open task manager from GINA screen.
When you hit the Ctrl + Alt + Del keys simultaneously, a new screen appears with multiple options and that screen is known as GINA screen (Global Information Network Architecture). Generally, GINA screen used to open task manager. But this shortcut will open task manager easily compared to GINA screen.
Ctrl + Esc: Used to Open Start Menu
Generally, keyboards have the dedicated start menu button. And if start menu can be opened from one key stroke then why one would use two key strokes? It doesn’t make sense to use this shortcut to open start menu. Actually, this shortcut is designed for the keyboards, which don’t have dedicated start menu key/button. If someone uses a keyboard without start menu button, this shortcut can open the start menu from the keyboard.
Windows Keyboard Shortcuts – Alt (04 Shortcuts)
Alt + Tab: Used to Switch between Programs
This is a very old shortcut but still in use for years. Whenever you are working with multiple programs/files, this shortcut will show you active programs and you can switch between those active programs. Let me tell you an another trick.
Here, combination of Windows key and Tab key will show you a fantastic view of active programs (in forward direction). What I am talking about this trick is, hold down the Window key and then press Tab. It’s like 3D. But, if you use Shift key with this keyboard shortcut (Windows key + Shift + Tab) then the animation will goes in reverse direction. I hope you will love to see animation.
Alt + F4: Used to Close Programs
After your work is finished, just press Alt + F4 and this shortcut will close/shut down the active program. This keyboard shortcut will function in the same way as close button of program. Now you might be confused between Ctrl + W and Alt + F4.
Alt + F4 is used to close the application whereas Ctrl + W is used to close the window. Still confused? Let me clear you. Suppose, you are working with 5 open tabs in google chrome. Now, if you press use Ctrl + W shortcut then it will close active tab of chrome. You have still total 4 opened tab in chrome. But, if you press Alt + F4, then all of the opened tab and chrome will be closed. If you are still confused then open multiple tabs in chrome and try this shortcut alternatively. I hope you will get the point.
Alt + Enter: Used to Display Properties
In windows explorer, when you select any file and press Alt + Enter then it will show you properties of selected file. No matter what type of file you have selected. You will get rid of doing right click and to select Properties option. This keyboard shortcut is specially designed to work with windows explorer.
Alt + Spacebar: Used to Display Shortcut Menu
No matter which program/application you are using, just hit the Spacebar with Alt and your eyes will be watching Shortcut Menu of the active window.
Windows Keyboard Shortcuts – Windows Key (05 Shortcuts)
Windows Key + D: Show/Hide the Desktop
We can say that this is an actually Time Saving shortcut. Let me tell you how. When you uses this shortcut, all of your programs will be minimized and your eyes will be watching your beautiful desktop. No matter how many programs you have opened.
When you again use this shortcut on desktop, all of your minimized programs will be maximized and your last active program will be in front of your eyes. Biggest benefit of this shortcut is Time. Because we don’t need to click minimize button of multiple programs.
Windows Key + L: Used to Lock the Computer
When you need to leave your screen, this shortcut will returns you to the login screen and will protect your device. It will lock your computer, so any unknown eyes will need your login password to use your computer.
Windows Key + R: Used to Open Run Dialog Box
Whatever program or software you are using, when you hit the Windows Key + R, it will bring up Run Dialog Box to you. This run dialog box provides an easy way to run commands and open items like Drives, applications, Folders etc.
Windows Key + U: Used to Open Ease of Access Center
This keyboard shortcut will Open Ease of Access Center directly. You don’t need to go through Control Panel. Ease of Access Center is the place where you can make changes of your keyboard, mouse, contrast and many more other settings.
Windows Key with +: Used to Open Magnifier
Some times we need to zoom in into an image to view details clearly (like text or object). Magnifier is the windows classic tool to magnify things. But, to access magnifier we need to go through Ease of Access Center in Control Panel. Keyboard shortcut of windows key and plus icon (+) can access magnifier tool directly. In magnifier, plus icon is used to zoom in and minus icon is used to zoom out.
One another shortcut to exit/close the magnifier. Combo of windows key and Esc will exit the magnifier and your screen will be restored to it’s regular resolution. I hope the list of these keyboard shortcuts will be helpful to you. For your convenience, I have summarize the all shortcuts in the table form. Have a look.
Short List of Keyboard Shortcuts
|Keyboard Shortcut – Ctrl||Used For|
|Ctrl + C||Copy|
|Ctrl + V||Paste|
|Ctrl + P|
|Ctrl + Z||Undo|
|Ctrl + S||Save|
|Ctrl + A||Select All|
|Ctrl + O||Open a File|
|Ctrl + W||Close a Window|
|Ctrl + F||Find|
|Ctrl + N||Open New Window|
|Ctrl + Shift + Esc||Open Task Manager|
|Ctrl + Esc||Open Start Menu|
|Keyboard Shortcut – Alt||Used For|
|Alt + Tab||Switch between Programs|
|Alt + F4||Close Programs|
|Alt + Enter||Display Properties|
|Alt + Spacebar||Display Shortcut Menu|
|Keyboard Shortcut – Windows Key||Used For|
|Windows Key + D||Show / Hide the Desktop|
|Windows Key + L||Lock the Computer|
|Windows Key + R||Open Run Dialog Box|
|Windows Key + U||Open Ease of Access Center|
|Windows Key with +||Open Magnifier|
Now, you know very well about very useful windows keyboard shortcuts. If this post helped you then please share it with your friends and family to know about it. If you have any questions then feel free to ask in comment section. We will try our best to help you. Have a great time.
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For more info about windows keyboard shortcuts, please visit the link here (official website of Microsoft)
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