19 Keyboard Shortcuts You Should Know About

Doing things the traditional way always takes a longer time and requires a lot of patience. Our modern age really has been made so comfortable and easy by machines and shortcuts and this idea has entered even the world of computers and mobile devices in the form of keyboard shortcuts, mouse clicks and easy taps but only a selected few knows or cares to use these stuff which can save a lot of time when applied and used consistently.

Common Keyboard Shortcuts in Previous Windows Versions

Windows has contained shortcuts ever since its very first version was released but these only started to become more popular starting in Windows XP. Shortcuts have continued to exist down to Vista and Windows 7 and most of it never changed while there were a little bit more which were added as newer editions of Windows came. The list below shows the shortcuts that were available in the old Windows versions and are still available even in Windows 8.1.

1. Saving a File (CTRL + S)

When the autosave feature was not available yet, the CTRL + S keyboard shortcut combination was a handy tool in saving a document or updating it while you are in the process of completing it. Losing a very important document that you are working on was common before especially when the power suddenly goes off or something causes your computer to fail so you really needed to press on this keyboard shortcut combination to keep the file saved in its latest version.


2. Copying Something (CTRL + C)

Copying something from any location on your Windows computer is always done easier using this keyboard shortcut combination. Simply highlight the item that you want to copy from one location either the desktop, documents library, pictures, videos etc. and press on the CTRL and the C keys simultaneously then go to the next location where you want to paste it on. The next keyboard shortcut will show you how to paste the item to its new location.


3. Paste an Item Quickly (CTRL + V)

After pressing on the CTRL + C keyboard shortcut to copy something and going to the new location where you want to store it, simply press on the CTRL + V keys to paste the item to the new location. If you copied a relatively large file, the process of pasting will take a long time and a small Window showing the overall progress of the process will appear on the screen.


4. Quick Undo (CTRL + Z)

The next keyboard shortcut that you need to learn is the CTRL + Z keyboard combination. This allows you to undo any recent change which you have done on a document you are working on or a picture that you are trying to create or edit using the Paint tool.


5. Highlight Everything (CTRL + A)

While doing something on Microsoft Word, Powerpoint or even just on the Notepad tool, you can highlight things easily without the clicking, holding and dragging actions which are common mouse gestures when doing this action. Simply put the cursor anywhere inside the document that you are working on and press the CTRL + A keys simultaneously to select all the stuff that are currently displaying on the screen.


6. Delete Things Quickly (CTRL + X)

The backspace key works great in deleting some items on the screen especially when you are working on a document but when it’s a whole page of words that you need to delete, the backspace key may not be a good tool to use. You will need a button that can delete everything in just a single press. If this is the case, you can use the “CTRL + X” keyboard shortcut combination to delete all of the things that are currently on the screen.


Brand New Shortcuts for Windows 8.1

The Windows 8.1 operating system contains some brand new feature that are not found anywhere on some old Windows editions and these features are capable of being accessed by using some keyboard shortcut combinations which are not available in Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7. If you’re excited to know these keyboard shortcuts then here’s a list that would help you meet each one of them. You will also learn what each one of them does by going through each of the descriptions included below.

7. Access the Charms Bar (Windows Key + C)

If the common shortcuts in all of the previous Windows versions used the CTRL key, the ones in the Windows 8.1 operating system makes use of the Windows Key and most of them are set to access some brand new features that are never to be found in all of the previous Windows versions. One of these brand new features is the Charms bar. The Charms are a set of shortcuts that helps you access some brand new locations on the Windows 8.1 system which are mostly related to the Metro environment. To access these shortcuts, you can simply press on the Windows + C keys and the Charms bar will appear on the right edge of the screen.


8. Access the Second Screen Connectivity Options (Windows Key + P)

This keyboard shortcut helps you get access to some second screen connectivity options. It is most useful when you are projecting your screen on a second device. Simply press on the Windows + P keys and you will see a screen that will appear at the right-edge containing the “PC screen only ”, “Duplicate”, “Extend” and “Second screen only” options. This shortcut also works in all of the previous Windows versions.


9. Access a Hidden Menu (Windows Key + X)

There’s a set of hidden links and shortcuts right on the desktop screen which can only be accessed using a keyboard shortcut. Try pressing on the “Windows + X” keys while you are on the desktop screen and you’ll be able to open small menu that contains some very important locations within the Windows 8.1 operating system.


10. Locking the Screen (Windows Key + L)

Locking the screen would take some time if you do it in the traditional way on any of the Windows version and the old way won’t work on Windows 8.1 so you can just use the Windows + L keyboard shortcut combination to lock the screen quickly.


11. Search Everywhere (Windows Key + Q)

If you are looking for something which you forgot the location of then you can search for it everywhere within your computer’s hard drive. To perform a “Search everywhere” session, simply press the Windows + Q keys and a screen will appear at the right edge with a search input box where you can enter a keyword to use for the search.


12. Search for  Settings (Windows Key + W)

Searching for something within the PC settings section would take a very long time if you do it manually so why don’t you just press on the “Windows + W” keys to access the search input box which will appear on the right-edge of the screen that will help you initiate a search for the settings that you are trying to look for.


13. Search for Files (Windows Key + F)

Doing a search for a specific file is easily initiated by pressing the Windows + F keys on your computer’s keyboard and the resulting screen that will appear on the right-edge looks like the screenshot below.


14. Open the Settings Charm (Windows Key + I)

Accessing the Settings charm through the Charms bar would take a relatively longer time so why don’t you just press on the “Windows + I” keys to open the Settings Charm right away in just a single keyboard shortcut action.


15. Open the Search Charm (Windows Key + S)

In the same way, accessing the Search charm by opening the Charms bar will also take a long time so just press on the “Windows + S” keys to open this important feature quickly.


16. Access the Desktop Quickly (Windows Key + D)

You might be working with a lot of program and software Window on your screen but you want to access the desktop in just one action without having to minimize each Window. If that’s the case then you can simply click on the Windows + D keys and all of the open Windows will just be minimized altogether.


17. Open the Share Charm (Windows Key + H)

Found something worth sharing. Forward it easily via email or share it as a post on Facebook by using the “Share” charm and the fastest way of accessing it is by pressing the Windows + H keys.


18. Open the Devices Charm (Windows Key + K)

Want to Play, Print or Project something on a device that is connected to your computer? You can quickly do any of these actions simply by using the Devices charm and the fastest way of accessing it is by pressing the Windows + K keys on your machine’s keyboard.


19. Minimize a Window (Windows Key + M)

Tired of using the mouse and pointing it on to the usual place just to minimize a Window? You can use the Windows + M keys to minimize a presently highlighted Window quickly without using the mouse.