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  • Writer's pictureDawson Bodenhamer

44 Useful and Magical Windows Keyboard Shortcuts You Probably Don't Know

Updated: May 15

wizard learning keyboard shortcuts

In a world where efficiency is king, mastering these useful Windows keyboard shortcuts will turn you into such a power user you'll be bench-pressing yourself out of bed in the morning. At Wizard Electronics, we're here to guide you through this treasure map, turning everyday tasks into swift keystrokes of genius. Welcome to your first step towards becoming a computing wizard, where "Ctrl+C" and "Ctrl+V" are merely chilld's play in your journey of epicness.

Beginner's Gateway to Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

Dive into the basics with these essential shortcuts designed to streamline your Windows experience. Remember, every wizard starts somewhere, and these shortcuts are your foundational spells:

  • Ctrl + F: Find text within a document or webpage (you can use this to search this list!)

  • Ctrl + Mousewheel / Ctrl + (+/-): Zoom in or out on a webpage or document.

  • Ctrl + E (While Inside a Folder): Puts your cursor up in the search bar so you can begin searching for a certain file.

  • Ctrl + W: Close the current window or tab. (Be careful!)

  • Windows Key: Opens search. Just press and start your search!

  • Windows + Period: Open the emoji keyboard, which can be searched.

  • Windows + Shift + S: Capture a portion of the screen using the snipping tool.

  • Windows + G: Open the Game Bar for game recording and screenshots.

  • Windows + A: Open the Action Center for notifications and quick settings.

  • Windows + L: Lock your computer or switch users.

  • Windows + E: Open File Explorer for quick access to files.

  • Windows + U: Open Ease of Access Center for accessibility settings.

  • Windows + I: Open Settings to adjust your computer's settings.

  • Windows + X: Open the Quick Link menu for system management shortcuts.

  • Windows + C: Open Microsoft Copilot.

  • Windows + V: Access clipboard history to paste previously copied texts.

  • Windows + P: Switch between display modes when connected to multiple monitors or projectors.

  • Windows + K: Open the Connect panel to connect to wireless displays and audio devices. (Your computer must have wifi capabilities.)

  • Windows + R: Open the Run dialog box to execute commands.

  • Windows + T: Cycle through apps on the taskbar.

  • Alt + Tab: Switch back to the previous open window/application.

  • Hold Alt + Tab: Press Tab repeatedly to cycle through all open applications. Let go of Alt when you've chosen the one you want to switch to.

  • Alt + F4: Close the active item, or exit the active application.

  • Shift Key x5: Activate Sticky Keys for keyboard shortcuts without needing to press multiple keys at once.

  • Ctrl + Alt + Del: Access security options and sign out, lock, or change a password.

Ready to elevate your wizardry? Time for Power User Mode:

These advanced shortcuts are the arcane knowledge you seek, internet traveler. Control virtual desktops with ease and seamlessly manage your multitasking realm. Dive deeper with a shortcut to restart your graphics adapter—a trick for the most skilled of magicians facing display issues. And for those who wield the power of text, a shortcut to delete entire words in a single stroke is also in your future. BEHOLD:

  • F2: Rename a selected file or folder in File Explorer.

  • Windows + D / M: Show the desktop (D) or minimize all windows (M).

  • Control + Shift + Esc: Open Task Manager to view running applications and processes.

  • Windows. + Tab: Open the virtual desktop menu. If you want to delete unused virtual desktops, here is where you do it.

  • Windows + Ctrl + D: Create a new virtual desktop, perfect for organizing tasks and applications.

  • Ctrl + Windows Key + Arrow Key: Navigate between virtual desktops for better multitasking.

  • Windows Key + Left/Right Arrow: Snap the current window to the left or right half of the screen, useful for multitasking.

  • Windows Key + P: Choose a presentation display mode, helpful for setting up presentations or connecting to monitors.

  • Windows + Number Row (1-0): Open or switch to an app pinned to the taskbar in the position indicated by the number.

  • Windows + Shift + Arrows: Move the active window to another monitor, useful for multi-monitor setups.

  • Windows + X: Access the Quick Link menu for advanced system management tasks.

  • Windows + Ctrl + Shift + B: Reset the graphics driver, useful for troubleshooting display issues. Your screen will go black for a few seconds.

  • Ctrl + Backspace: Delete the previous word in a text field, faster than deleting character by character.

  • Ctrl + Arrow Left/Right: Move the cursor to the beginning of the previous or next word, making text navigation quicker.

  • Ctrl + Shift + V: Paste text without formatting, useful for copying text into different applications.

  • Control + Esc: Open the Start Menu, an alternative to pressing the Windows key.

  • Control + Shift + Click: Launch an app as an administrator directly from the taskbar for elevated tasks.

  • Shift + Click Restart on Start Menu: Boot into Advanced Boot Options for troubleshooting and system recovery tasks. This can be used to access UEFI (BIOS) Firmware settings without having to repeatedly press a key on boot.

  • Double/Triple Click: Select a word or paragraph with double or triple mouse clicks, streamlining text selection.

Wrapping Up

Feeling powerful yet? With these tools, your productivity and efficiency will have you feeling like a sumo wrestler at a tea party. And if ever you find yourself in need of further magical tech insights or assistance, remember to Summon the Wizard! At Wizard Electronics, our services are your grimoire for navigating the tech world, from computer repair to network installation and beyond.

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