Keyboard Shortcuts to Streamline Your Workflow17th May 2017
Having the keyboard do half the work is a quick and easy way to boost productivity. With keyboard shortcuts, a long list of daily IT tasks are done faster and with more accuracy. Instead of executing a series of menu searches and clicking through icons, memorise a couple of keys, press them in sequence and you will complete jobs faster than you ever thought possible.
There are options for Windows and Apple computers in this list, so nobody misses out.
Note: the use of + does not refer to the plus symbol key. The keys before and after the + should be pressed one, then the other in sequence.
E.g. Windows Key+E = press the Windows Key followed by the E key.
Shortcuts for Windows
Windows Key+E – Allows you to open Windows Explorer in an instant. Access all your files and computer systems info in two handy taps.
Windows Key+M – If you have sensitive information on screen or are simply procrastinating when you shouldn’t be, use this shortcut to immediately minimise your open windows. To maximise the windows again, hit Windows Key+Shift+M and all your previously opened windows will reappear. Go on, give it a try!
Alt+Tab – Scroll through all your open windows with ease. This shortcut brings up a mini window displaying your open windows; use the arrow keys to navigate and remember to dust off your mouse when it’s been sat idle for a while.
Shift+Delete – This deletes a highlighted file permanently. If you dislike having to empty the recycling bin to delete things forever then this will save you a lot of time.
Windows Key+Pause – The systems properties menu is useful for accessing the windows update centre, the action centre and various security settings. Using this shortcut takes you straight there.
Ctrl+B, Ctrl+I, Ctrl+U – For the bloggers, copywriters and journos out there, make bolding, italicizing and underlining text a cinch. Use B for bold, I for italics and U for underliners.
Shortcuts for Mac
Command+F – Search your entire computer, including Documents, Drives and Safari, in one fell swoop. Command+F will bring up a small search bar dedicated to this task.
Command+C, Command+V, Command+X – It’s well known among Windows users, but Mac computers provide exactly the same shortcut. With Command+C, V and X, you can copy, paste and cut highlighted information in an instant.
Command+Q – To enhance the performance of your computer, it helps to quit applications that you are not using. To fully close an application quickly on a Mac, press Command+Q. It is quicker and more effective than clicking the red X in the top left of a window, as this will only remove the open window and not fully quit the app.
Command+Shift+3, Command+Shift+4 – Some jobs require screenshots to be taken daily, other times screenshots are a nice quirk that can illustrate IT problems effectively. Whatever your reasons, on a Mac a shot of the entire screen can be taken using Command+Shift+3, and you can select a portion of the screen using Command+Shift+4.
Command+Option+Esc – This is a handy shortcut if an app becomes unresponsive (known colloquially as ‘the pinwheel of death’). It will shut down that particular app and then you are free to reopen it, or free up the CPU in other ways before reopening the app.
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