Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/174952/the-20-most-important-keyboard-shortcuts-for-windows-pcs/
Keyboard shortcuts are practically essential for using any type of PC. They’ll speed up almost everything you do. But long lists of keyboard shortcuts can quickly become overwhelming if you’re just getting started.
Ctrl+Shift+Esc opens Task Manager directly
As an experienced computer user, I find the following rather ridiculous
For example, if you want to launch Firefox, you can press the Windows key, start typing the word Firefox, and press Enter when the Firefox shortcut appears. It’s a quick way to launch programs, open files, and locate Control Panel options without even touching your mouse and without digging through a cluttered Start menu.
Either the writer of this article has some sort of mouse allergy or he totally doesn't realize that (a) most people have desktop icons as shortcuts (b) simply double click on the icon opens the program.
So simple and absolutely no need to bother with the Windows key as he suggests.
Given that not everyone has a shortcut on their desktop for every single program they use, it tends to be more handy than you give it credit for. Some people get confused by having too many icons on their desktop, or others don't have enough real estate to keep everything there, due to low vision settings or something like that.
At work I use Windows + L to lock my computer. It's amazing how many people still do Ctrl+Alt+Del and click Lock this computer. But they've always done it that way, so...
I also like Windows Key + M. Minimizes all windows in order to easily reach desktop icons. It's the same thing as clicking the rectangle button on the right edge of the taskbar in Windows 7.
I also like using Windows + Arrow keys for arranging open windows. It's especially good for multi-taskers who are stuck to 1 monitor. It also allows you to snap screens to the inside edged of multi-monitor setups
Windows + Up Arrow: Maximize window
Windows + Down Arrow: Minimize window
Windows + Right Arrow: Snap window to right half of screen screen
Windows + Left Arrow: Snap window to left half of screen screen
If one does have a desktop full of icons it is easy to find one by simply hitting the first letter of it until the highlight falls on the one you want. To find the Firefox icon simply hit the F key until it finds it.
Thanks for that Wysir, I'll be using Win+M in future (that makes two uses I now have for the Windows key, the other being Win+L).
Re the article, the Windows key plus Tab gives a screen switching effect a bit fancier than Alt+Tab but no more functional. Ctrl+Win+Tab does the same, but then Tab or the arrow keys alone can be used to switch between screens and enter to select a screen. AFAIK these only work in editions of Vista and 7 that use Aero (ie Home Premium and upwards).
Could you do the same for Linux, and tell everyone about the FREAKING AWESOME MOUSE WHEEL SHORTCUTS ?
Select text → middle click somewhere else → copied & pasted. BOOM.
Select text → middle click on the Chrome New Tab Button → Googled. BOOM.
PS: it's not absolutely universal, some text fields don't support it 100%
In Firefox, you can go to Options --> Advanced, and set "Search for text as I start typing" to on, and you don't even need Ctrl+F. Just click in the page somewhere and start typing. F3 will then find the next instance.
I find the copy, cut, paste keyboard shortcuts both annoying and very useful. There has many times where I have copied some text and then wanted replace another piece of text. I would accidentally pressed Ctrl+C instead of Ctrl+V thereby coying the text I wanted to replace and therefore overiding the original copied text.
My desktop is empty of icons, besides the Recycle Bin. I find all my programs I want to run through the start menu or pinned to the taskbar. I have seen desktops where it is complete full of icons, actually no free space to put any new icons. I am unsure how anyone finds anything on that desktop.
I use Windows Key + D to get to the desktop.
Thank you Chris for these tricks to help us saving time.
A small correction : To go back or forward while browsing, we must hold the Alt key (not Ctrl) and press the left or right arrow keys .
Microsoft has a huge list of keyboard shortcuts.
It has Wndows 8/7/Vista categories so you won't be learning shortcuts for another operating system.
ctrl+z to undo on the desktop - ie you just deleted something, or renamed something, or selected a bunch of things to move and it suddenly gave you duplicates. Just ctrl+z to undo and get rid of all of them.
In ie and firefox - ctrl+d to save page to favorites and ctrl+shift+t to undo closing a browser tab.
one more on the desktop - win key to search then cmd for command prompt but instead of hitting enter do ctrl+shift+enter now click yes and it will open an Administrator Command prompt.