Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Join AITP
Community Search
News & Press: Feature

Windows Hotkeys - Tips and Tricks

Thursday, January 14, 2010   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Jim Henry
Share |
Recently, while working with a client on why one should lock their workstation when they walk away, I was surprised to hear "Well, it takes too long. I have to hit Ctrl + Alt + Delete, then click lock". My reply was a quick, "No, you just hit Windows + L". Blank stare! Taking this as an educational moment, I thought to myself "Huh, just because I, who have been doing IT for 25 + years, know these short cuts and use them daily, does NOT mean the average user does!" Obvious, but we're known to overlook the obvious!

We came up with a longer list of shortcuts and such, but I thought I'd start with this short list. Let me know if you find this useful or if this falls under the obvious for you.


Ctrl + Escape or Win: Display start menu.
Shift + F10 or AppsKey: Display context menu.
Win + E: Open Windows Explorer.
Win + R: Open Run dialog.
Win + D: Toggle minimize all windows.
Win + B: Activate system tray. Arrow keys select, Enter double-clicks, and AppsKey or Shift + F10 right-clicks.
Win + L: Locks keyboard. Similar to Lock Workstation.
Win + F or F3: Open Find dialog. (All Files) F3 may not work in some applications which use F3 for their own find dialogs.
Win + Control + F: Open Find dialog. (Computers)
Win + U: Open Utility Manager.
Win + F1: Open Windows help.
Win + Pause: Open System Properties dialog.
Win + Tab: Cycle through taskbar buttons. Enter clicks, AppsKey or Shift + F10 right-clicks.
Win + Shift + Tab: Cycle through taskbar buttons in reverse.
Alt + Tab: Display CoolSwitch. More commonly known as the AltTab dialog.
Alt + Shift + Tab: Display CoolSwitch; go in reverse.
Alt + Escape: Send active window to the bottom of the z-order.
Alt + Shift + Escape: Activate the window at the bottom of the z-order.
Alt + F4: Close active window; or, if all windows are closed, open shutdown dialog.
Shift while a CD is loading: Bypass AutoPlay.
Ctrl + Alt + Delete or Ctrl + Alt + NumpadDel (Both NumLock states): Invoke the Task Manager or NT Security dialog.
Ctrl + Shift + Escape: Invoke the task manager. On earlier OSes, acts like Ctrl + Escape.
Printscreen: Copy screenshot of current screen to clipboard.
Alt + Printscreen: Copy screenshot of current active window to clipboard.
Ctrl + Alt + Down Arrow: Invert screen. Untested on OSes other than XP.
Ctrl + Alt + Up Arrow: Undo inversion.

There are a ton of these out there. Again, some of these are very obvious, but in creating this list, I learned a few more myself!


Jim Henry
Project Manager / Tex R Us, LLC
(Also your 2009 Association Vice President)

Member Log In


Forgot your password?

Haven't joined AITP yet?

Latest News
Upcoming Events

9/10/2014
AITP Region Presidents Council Meeting

9/16/2014
AITP Executive Committee Meeting

9/17/2014 » 9/18/2014
Region 5 Fall 2014 Meeting

9/24/2014
AITP Board of Directors Meeting

10/8/2014
AITP Region Presidents Council Meeting

Online Surveys

Referral Campaign 2014


Copyright © 2011-2014 Association of Information Technology Professionals, All Rights Reserved.
Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
AITP Headquarters, 1120 Route 73, Ste 200. Mount Laurel, NJ 08054-5113
Phone: 1.800.224.9371 or 856.380.6910 · Fax: 856.439.0525 · Email: aitp_hq@aitp.org