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Tech tips

Tech how-to: Create your own keyboard shortcuts

You probably know that using keyboard shortcuts is a great way to save time and increase efficiency. You may not know every amazing thing you can do with a shortcut, though.

For example: How do you open a Windows application? Do you roll the mouse pointer over to an icon? Or do you lift your finger up and then tap on a tile? If yes, you are wasting plenty of time and exerting undue strain on your shoulder.

Good news: there’s a shortcut for that! With a keyboard, you can quickly manage any task you usually do with your touchpad or mouse. All you have to do is simultaneously press one or two keys. Amazing right? Let’s get into it so you can start saving precious time ASAP.

Clever keyboard shortcuts you’ll wish you knew sooner

Memorizing all of these shortcuts will likely take some time. That’s why you should print them out and leave them next to your keyboard. This lets you quickly reference these shortcuts whenever you need to use them. So, let’s focus on the ones that you need to use more regularly.

Windows 10 offers you hundreds of commands. However, you will likely use only a few of those commands regularly. To save time and effort, use these simple Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts. With only a little effort, you can easily open files, edit your content, find content and more!

Basic shortcuts

  • Ctrl + A: Selects all the items in a window
  • Ctrl + Shift + Insert: Pastes highlighted or selected items
  • Ctrl + Insert or Ctrl + C: Copies highlighted or selected item 
  • Ctrl + X: Cuts highlighted or selected item
  • Ctrl + Z: Undo a previous action
  • Ctrl + Y: Redo action

New Windows 10 shortcuts

Keyboard shortcutFunction
Win + COpens Cortana for any voice input
Win + SOpens Search
 Win + IOpens Settings
Win + AOpens Action Center
 Win + XOpens Quick Link menu
Win + Left arrowSnaps active window to the left
Win + Right arrowSnaps active window to the right
Win + Up arrowMaximizes the current window
Win + Down arrowMinimizes or removes the current window
Win + Ctrl + DCreates a new virtual desktop
Win + TABAccesses all desktops and applications in Task View
Win + PrtScTakes a screenshot and saves it to the Screenshots folder
Win + GOpens Game bar

Keyboard Shortcuts in Windows 10 to switch between apps

Do you work with many applications at the same time? In that case, you can easily and quickly switch between these apps, all without moving away from the keyboard.

  • Alt + Tab – Note that by repeatedly pressing your Tab key while holding Alt pressed, you will be able to cycle through open apps and windows. You can release the Tab key on the app or window that you would like to open.
  • Windows + Tab – This shortcut opens Task view, and this is where you can easily switch between various open windows.
  • Ctrl + Tab + Alt – This shortcut will display the list of all open windows and applications. It also keeps the list on your screen even after you have released the keys. After that, you can navigate through open apps and windows using the mouse or arrow keys.

Command Prompt shortcuts

Keyboard ShortcutFunction
Shift + Left arrowHighlights text to the  left of the cursor
Shift + Right arrowHighlights text to the  right of the cursor
Ctrl + CCopies selected text to the clipboard
Ctrl + VPastes text from the clipboard
Ctrl + ASelects all text

Keyboard Shortcuts to manage app windows

Apart from switching between apps, you can manage multiple application windows on the screen more quickly by doing it exclusively from your keyboard:

  • Windows + Up Arrow: This shortcut maximizes your active window both horizontally and vertically.
  • Windows + Down Arrow: Use this shortcut to restore your active window to the initial state or minimize it.
  • Windows + Shift + Up Arrow: This shortcut maximizes your active window vertically but maintains its width.
  • Windows + Shift + Down Arrow: This shortcut restores or minimizes the active window vertically and maintains its width.

Snip and Sketch shortcuts

  • CTRL + N: Creates new snip 
  • CTRL + O: Opens a file 
  • SHIFT + Arrow keys: Moves cursor to select the rectangular snip area 
  • CTRL + E: Selects Eraser
  • CTRL + P: Print annotation
  • CTRL + Z: Undo annotation

Taking screenshots

  • PrtScn: Screenshot your whole desktop
  • Alt + PrtScn: Screenshot the selected window 

File Explorer shortcuts

  • ALT + D: Selects the address bar
  • CTRL + F or CTRL + E: Selects the Search box
  • CTRL + N: Opens a new window 
  • CTRL + W: Closes the active window 

These keyboard shortcuts will help you complete tasks efficiently and quickly. And you will not have to click laboriously through the various menus. If you’ve been looking for a way to increase productivity, this is a great start.

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