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Monday, October 2, 2000

The power of keyboard

Working in Windows is fun, which is primarily due to its highly user-friendly interface, full mouse support and a full function keyboard. Normally people use mouse more but do not realise the power of the keyboard. No doubt, the mouse has its own role to play, but knowing keyboard short-cuts help. Her are some short cuts. These key combinations and short cuts are applicable to Windows 95 and 98. For the sake of simplicity, these have been classified into several categories :

System Key Combinations
Function Key Combination


Open Start menu 

Switch between open programs

Quit program

Delete items permanently (without taking to recycle bin)           


 Ctrl + Esc

Alt + Tab

Alt + F4

Shift + Delete

Windows Program Key Combinations










Ctrl + C

Ctrl + X

Ctrl + V

Ctrl + Z

Ctrl + B

Ctrl + U

Ctrl + I

Specific Key Combinations
General Keyboard Commands

F1 Starts Windows Help.
F10 Activates menu bar options.
Shift + F10 Opens a context menu for the selected item. This is the same as right-clicking an object.
Ctrl + Esc Opens the Start menu. Use the ARROW keys to select an item.
Alt + Down arrow Opens a drop-down list box.
Alt + Tab Switch to another running application. Hold down the Alt key and then press the Tab key to view the task-switching window
Shift: Press down and hold the Shift key while you insert a CD-ROM to bypass the auto-run feature.
Alt + spacebar Displays the main window's System menu. From the System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimise, maximise, or close the window
Alt + - (Alt + hyphen) Displays the multiple document (MDI) sub-window's System menu. From the MDI sub-window's System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimise, maximise, or close the sub- window.
Ctrl + Tab Switch to the next sub-window of a Multiple Document Interface (MDI) application.
Alt + <underlined
 letter in menu>
Opens the corresponding menu.
Alt + F4 Closes the current window.
Ctrl + F4 Closes the current Multiple Document Interface (MDI) window.
Alt +F6   Switch between multiple windows in the same program. For example, when the Notepad Find dialog box is displayed, Alt + F6 switches between the Find dialog box and the main Notepad window.
General Folder/Shortcut Control
Key Result
F4 Selects the Go to a different folder box and moves down the entries in the box (if the toolbar is active in Windows Explorer).
F5 Refreshes the current window.
F6 Moves among panes in Windows Explorer.
Ctrl + G Opens the Go To Folder tool (in Windows 95 Windows Explorer only).
Ctrl + Z Undo the last command.
Ctrl + A Select all items in the current window.
Backspace Switch to the parent folder.
Shift + click close button For folders, close the current folder plus all parent folders.
Windows Explorer tree control
Key Result
Numeric Keypad * Expands everything under the current selection.
Numeric Keypad + Expands the current selection.
Numeric Keypad - Collapses the current selection.
Right arrow Expands the current selection if it is not expanded, otherwise goes to the first sub.
Left arrow Collapses the current selection if it is expanded, otherwise goes to the parent.
Windows key associated key combinations
Key Result
Windows Start menu
Windows + R Run dialog box
Windows + M Minimise all
Shift + Windows + M Undo minimise all
Windows + F1 Help
Windows + E Windows Explorer
Windows + F Find files or folders
Windows + D Minimises all open windows and displays the desktop
Ctrl + Windows + F Find computer
CTRL+ Windows + Tab Moves focus from Start, to Quick Launch bar, to System Tray. Use right arrow or left arrow to move focus to items on Quick launch bar and system tray
Windows + Tab Cycle through taskbar buttons
Windows + Break System Properties dialog box 
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