Really Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

As requested by twitterers! Here’s a little list of some really useful keyboard shortcuts that can save your time/life:

  • Ctrl + T = New tab
  • Ctrl + Shift + T = Opens the last tab you closed
  • Ctrl + W = Closes the tab you’re on
  • Ctrl + F = Opens a find bar for you to search text in whatever window you’ve got open (not just internet browsers – works for word documents, PDFs etc.)
  • Ctrl + D = Bookmarks a page

Ooh, the Swiss Army Librarian already wrote about this here (thanks Annie!) – there’s even a downloadable document for people to use and adapt if they want to too.

And here’s a bunch more (thanks Hazel!)

Mouse Schmouse. (CC afu007 on Flickr)

Any other favourites? Leave a comment!


7 thoughts on “Really Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

  1. A couple I haven’t seen on the lists already mentioned:
    Ctrl+N starts a new document in Office or a new window (as distinct from a new tab) in a browser
    One I hit by accident and get confused is Alt (the left-hand one)+Shift: this often toggles through the language settings for your keyboard (if you have any available). So if you find your keyboard stops giving you the characters you expect, try this and see if it helps.

  2. Some of my favourites, I don’t know if these are obvious or not:

    Alt + left arrow = ‘back’ button – I ALWAYS use this, very handy with track pad as hardly have to move hands. And obviously then Alt + right arrow = forward button.

    Ctrl + Z to ‘Undo’ – not only in Microsoft Word but also internet text boxes e.g. Facebook (not this one alas) even if they don’t have an Undo button!

    Also one I use a lot is ‘Ctrl + shift + left arrow’ / ditto right arrow – to highlight text, backwards one word at a time (or forwards with right arrow), because then you can use Ctrl+B / Ctrl+I / Ctrl+U to bold/italic/underline it.

  3. Good call with back and forward in browsers, steph. You can also use the backspace key for back (further to move, but fewer keys to press!).

    And to go with Ctrl+Z to undo, Ctrl+Y will redo.

    Shift+arrow will highlight one character, or line (for up and down) at a time. You can also combine it with end or home, to go to end or beginning of line, or with ctrl+end or ctrl+home to go to end or beginning of document. Used without shift, ctrl+arrow just moves cursor to the next space, or with end/home to end/beginning of doc.

  4. And, and… (sorry could go on all night)

    To swap between tabs in browser use ctrl+tab (to go to the right) or ctrl+shift+tab (to go to the left). I find this a bit fiddly, though.

    1. Ah that’s really useful about swapping between tabs, cause I always use alt+tab to switch between windows when cross referencing, so that’s good to be able to do it just with tabs.

      And thanks for pointing out all the ‘select whole line thing’ as well 🙂

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