Last Updated on April 3, 2023
I have been writing professionally for slightly over six years now. During this period, I have amassed incredible keyboarding talents, including the ability to type a couple of sentences with my eyes closed.
But when it comes to using keyboard shortcuts, I must admit that I could still use some lessons. No matter how many keyboard combinations I have learned, I occasionally find myself reaching for my mouse to navigate a menu on my Word Doc or Gmail account.
Recently, I decided to track my efficiency using a mouse compared to keyword combinations. I discovered that I’m thrice as fast when using keyboard shortcuts as when using a mouse.
Following this revelation, I resolved to hone my knowledge of keyboard combinations even further. I took the trouble of making a curated list of 100+ remarkably time-saving keyboard shortcuts, the same which I’m happy to share with you.
The shortcuts aren’t limited to word processors. You can also apply some of them in your Gmail account to reply to emails fast.
1. Ctrl + A – Select all items.
2. Ctrl + C – Copy the highlighted text.
3. Ctrl + D – Delete the selected item.
4. Ctrl + V – Paste the copied text into the current document.
5. Ctrl + N – Open a new word document.
6. Ctrl + P – Print the current document.
7. Ctrl + R – Refresh the active window.
8. Ctrl + S – Save the current document.
9. Ctrl + T – Open a new tab.
10. Ctrl + W – Close whatever you’re viewing, be it a browser tab or File Explorer window.
11. Ctrl + X – Cut the highlighted text.
12. Ctrl +Y – Redo an action.
13. Ctrl + Z – Undo an action.
14. Ctrl + Alt + Delete – Force quit an app.
15. Ctrl + Esc – Open the Start menu.
16. Ctrl + F4 – Close the open document (applicable in apps that let you run multiple documents simultaneously).
17. Ctrl + mouse scroll wheel – Change the size of desktop icons.
NOTE: While these shortcuts are typically synonymous with Windows, most of them also apply to macOS devices. All you need to do is substitute the Ctrl key with the Command key. For instance, Ctrl + A would become Command + A.
The following are other common Ctrl/Command-based shortcuts used on Mac devices;
18. Command + F – Find items within a document or open a ‘Find’ window.
19. Command + G – Find Again. In other words, you press this combination to find the next occurrence of an item previously found.
20. Command + H – Hide the windows of the front app. Meanwhile, you can still view the front app but hide all other apps by pressing Option + Command + H.
21. Command + M – Minimize the front window to the Dock. You can also minimize all the windows of the front app by pressing Option + Command + M.
22. Command + O – Open the highlighted item. The combination also allows you to open a dialog so you can choose a file to open.
23. Command + Comma – Open preferences for the display app.
24. Command + Control + F – Use the display app in full screen (this will only happen if the app supports full-screen viewing).
25. Command + Option + Esc – Force quit an app.
26. Command + Shift + 3/4/5 – Take a screenshot or make a screen recording. The last option, i.e., Command + Shift + 5, is only applicable for macOS Mojave or later.
27. Command + Space bar – Show or hide the spotlight search field.
28. Command + Space bar + Control – Show the Character Viewer where you can select symbols like emojis.
29. Command + Tab – Switch to the next most recently used application among the open apps.
30. Alt + F4 – Quit the current application.
31. Alt +Enter – Display properties of the highlighted item.
32. Alt + Esc – Cycle through items in the order in which you opened them.
33. Alt + Spacebar – Open the shortcut menu for the active window.
34. Alt +Tab – Switch between windows.
35. Alt + Underlined Letter – Perform the command for that letter (common in menus and dialog box options).
36. Alt + Left Arrow – Back.
37. Alt + Right Arrow – Forward.
38. Alt + Page Up – Move up one screen.
39. Alt + Page Down – Move down one screen.
40. Win – Display or hide the Start screen.
41. Win + B – Set focus in the notification area.
42. Win + C – Open Charms.
43. Win + D – Display or hide the desktop.
44. Win + E – Open File Explorer.
45. Win + F – Open the Search charm and search for files.
46. Win + F1 – Open Windows Help and support.
47. Win + H – Open the Share charm.
48. Win + I – Open the Settings charm.
49. Win + K – Open the Devices charm.
50. Win + L – Lock your PC or switch users/people.
51. Win + M – Minimize all open windows.
52. Win + O – Lock device orientation.
53. Win + P – Select a presentation display mode.
54. Win + Q – Open the Search charm so you can search everywhere or within the open app (ensure the application supports app search).
55. Win + R – Open the Run dialog box.
56. Win + S – Open the Search charm so you can search Windows and the web.
57. Win + T – Cycle through applications on the taskbar.
58. Win + U – Open Ease of Access Center.
59. Win + V – Cycle through notifications.
60. Win + V + SHIFT – Cycle through notifications in reverse order.
61. Win + W – Open the Search charm to search for settings.
62. Win + X – Open the Quick Link menu.
63. Win + Z – Display the commands available in the application.
64. Win + ALT + ENTER – Open Windows Media Center.
65. Win + Comma (,) – Peek at the desktop temporarily.
66. Win + CTRL + F – Search for PCs (only works if you’re on a network).
67. Win + (NUMBER 1-9) – Open the desktop and launch the application pinned to the taskbar which corresponds to the position indicated by the number.
68. Win + ALT + (NUMBER 1-9) – Open the desktop and then open Jump List so you can access the app pinned to the taskbar that corresponds to the position indicated by the number.
69. Win + CTRL + (NUMBER 1-9) – Open the desktop and switch to the last active window of the app pinned to the taskbar which corresponds to the position indicated by the number.
70. Win + CTRL + SHIFT + (NUMBER 1-9) – Open the desktop and open a new instance of the app located at the given position on the taskbar as an administrator.
71. Win + CTRL + SPACEBAR – Change to a previously-selected input.
72. Win + CTRL + B – Switch to the application that displayed a message in the notification area.
73. Win + ENTER – Open Narrator.
74. Win + HOME – Minimize all except the active desktop window ( a second stroke restores all windows).
75. Win + PAUSE – Show the System Properties dialog box.
76. Win + SHIFT + Period (.) – Cycle through open apps.
77. Win + SHIFT + M – Restore minimized windows on the desktop.
78. Win + Slash (/) – Initiate IME reconversion.
79. Win + SPACEBAR – Change input language and keyboard layout.
80. Win + TAB or Win + CTRL + TAB – Cycle through recently-used apps (except for desktop apps).
81. Win + SHIFT + TAB – Cycle through recently used apps (except desktop apps) in reverse order.
82. Win + UP ARROW – Maximize the window.
83. Win + LEFT ARROW – Maximize the app or desktop window located to the LEFT of the screen.
84. Win + RIGHT ARROW – Maximize the app or desktop window located to the RIGHT of the screen.
85. Win + DOWN ARROW – Clear the current app from the screen or minimize the desktop window.
86. Win + +/- – Zoom in or out using Magnifier.
87. Win + SHIFT + UP ARROW – Stretch the desktop window vertically.
88. Win + SHIFT + DOWN ARROW – Restore or minimize active desktop windows vertically.
89. PrtScn – Take a screenshot of the whole screen.
90. F1 – Display Help.
91. F2 – Rename the selected item.
92. F3 – Search for a file or folder.
93. F4 – Display the address bar list in File Explorer.
94. F5 – Refresh the active window.
95. F6 – Cycle through screen elements in a window or on the desktop.
96. F10 – Activate the Menu bar in the active app.
97. ] – Archive email and proceed to the next email.
98. a – Reply all
99. c – Compose a new email.
100. e – Archive email or return to inbox.
101. g then i – Go to inbox.
102. r – Reply to sender.
103. +u – Mark unread
There are plenty of keyboard shortcuts and we cannot possibly exhaust them in one post.