Q. What are the most useful keyboard shortcuts?

Most computer programs have keyboard shortcuts – these are key combinations that substitute for commonly used commands – this avoids having to grab the mouse and taking the cursor up to the menus at the top of the screen.  Learning these key combinations can save you time and effort.

When you use a key combination, don’t try to hit both keys at once. Instead, press and hold the Modifier key(s) (Control, Alt, Option, Command, Shift) and while holding, press the letter key once amd release it, then release the modifier.  It’s the same technique that you use for using the Shift key to capitalize letters.

The single best time saving shortcut isn’t a keyboard combo at all – it is a mouse one.  Wherever you are, click the Right mouse button (or hold down the Control key while clicking the mouse button on a Mac). This will pop up a context-sensitive menu with the most likely actions you would want to do with the item you have currently selected.  If you have selected a file, it may suggest you can open. copy, delete or compress the file. If you have spelled a word incorrectly in a word processor, a right click can pop up spell-checking and replacement options.  Try it in various programs and see what it can do.

The most popular keyboard shortcuts are:

Command Windows Mac (On a Mac, the Command key is also known as the Apple key – earlier Mac keyboards had a symbol of an apple on it) 
Cut Control-X Command-X Mnemonic: the X looks like a pair of scissors, which you use to “Cut”. Hint, when you Cut something, it is added to the clipboard, so it is ready to Paste somewhere else. So Cut is like a Copy plus a Delete.
Copy Control-C Command-C
Paste Control-V Command-V
Undo Control-Z Command-Z If you make a mistake, first thing is to take your hands off the keyboard, and then press Undo. It will only undo the last action, so it is important not to type or click anything else before Undoing.
Save Control-S Command-S Get in the habit of Saving your documents regularly, every few minutes, with Control-S. This will minimize the wasted time if your machine crashes or you make an error and exit the document.
Print Control-P Command-P
New Control-N Command-N Context sensitive, depending what you have selected it will create a new document, new email or new folder
Do the last action again Control-Y Repeat the last menu action
Zoom in Control-+ (plus) Command-+ (plus)
Zoom out Control- – (minus) Command- – (minus)
Select All Control-A Command-A
Find Control-F Command-F Especially useful to find a piece of text on a long web page or a long Word document.
Stop or exit an action Escape Escape or Command-Period
Reload the page Control-R Command-R
Reload the page and force override the cached version Control-Shift-R Command-Shift-R When you load a web page, your browser first looks in its cache on your hard drive to see if it has a recent version to use. This makes loading faster, but for pages that update continually, loading the cached version could give you out of date information.
Back a page in history Alt-Left Arrow Command-Left Arrow
Forward a page in history Alt-Right Arrow Command-Right Arrow
Go to top of page Home Home
Go to bottom of page End End
Go to Google Search Control-K Command-K
Bookmark this page Control-D Command-D
Go to location bar Alt-D or Control-L Command-L Useful when you want to type in a web address manually


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