Top Keyboard Shortcuts for Everyday Use to Save You Time

Basic Shortcuts

Whether you use Word, blog, or email, you will find these shortcuts useful. These are easy to learn and use. Some of these shortcuts won’t work in certain programs, like your browser, because they’ve been assigned by the program to do other tasks. For example, Ctrl+I in Firefox 3 will open your Bookmarks in a sidebar. In some programs you can change the default keywords to suit your needs, but in others they are what they are.

Shift+Arrow

Select specific text. Use the directional arrows to guide the selection.

Ctrl+ A

Select All

Ctrl+ X

Cut

Ctrl+C

Copy

Ctrl+V

Paste

Ctrl+B

Bold

Ctrl+I

Italic

Ctrl+U

Underline

Ctrl+ F

Find

Ctrl+Z

Undo

Windows

Did you know you can use keyboard shortcuts to navigate your desktop, too? If you didn’t, you’ve been missing out. When using Windows, you can navigate quickly to items you want, rename files without right-clicking, and tab through open programs.

F2

Rename a File

Ctrl+Esc

Bring up Start Menu

Shift+Ctrl+Esc or Ctrl+Alt+Delete

Opens Task Manager

Alt+Tab

Tab between open windows

Start+Tab

Tab between items on the taskbar

Start+R

Opens Run window

Internet Explorer

Windows keyboard shortcuts can be used with IE as well. There is also some overlap between IE shortcuts and Firefox shortcuts. Once you learn the most common keyboard shortcuts, you will be able to try them out in different programs and see which shortcuts do what. For a complete list of all IE shortcuts, go here.

Ctrl+D

While browsing, adds a site to your favorites.

F11

Toggle Full Screen view

Ctrl+N

Open current page in a new window

Ctrl + or Ctrl –

Zooms in/out on a page

Ctrl+J

Opens feeds

Firefox

Firefox has a very useful set of keyboard shortcuts. A complete list can be found here. These are the shortcuts you will likely use the most while browsing. If you’re new to keyboard shortcuts, start by learning these.

Alt+Arrow (left or right)

Back or Forward page

F5

Reload

Ctrl + or Ctrl – or Ctrl 0

Zooms in/out on a page, Ctrl+0 returns to default size

Ctrl+F

Find

‘ or /

Find as you type link or text

Note About Shortcuts

Depending on which programs you’re using, some or all of these shortcuts won’t work or will do different things. Many keyboards now come with shortcut keys that can be assigned to open a program or open a browser and go to a certain website. If you’re trying to use one of the listed shortcuts and they won’t work, check out your keyboard settings and the keyboard shortcuts for the program you’re using. As I mentioned earlier, most of the time they can be reassigned. So if an easy to remember shortcut opens something you never use, then reassign it.