Windows 10 offers an extensive collection of Windows keyboard shortcuts that can help you quickly use a PC, if you remember them. Fortunately, thanks to PowerToys, you can quickly see a handy popup guide with many of the most useful. Here̵
The secret is Microsoft PowerToys
With a PowerToys module called Shortcut Guide, you can hold down the Windows key on your keyboard and see an overlay on the screen that shows you partially context-sensitive shortcut keys for Windows. You can use it as a reference when you forget some important shortcuts.
To get this handy shortcut popup guide, you must first install PowerToys, a collection of useful Windows 10 utilities from Microsoft. You can download it for free from Github.
Once you have installed PowerToys, launch PowerToys Setup and click on “Shortcut Guide” in the sidebar. Next, make sure that ‘Enable Shortcut Guide’ is turned ‘On’.
This is optional, but while in PowerToys settings you can change the opacity of the shortcut guide, whether it is in dark or light colors, and the time it takes you to hold the Windows key before you see the guide.
When you are satisfied, close PowerToys Settings. The shortcut guide is still active in the background. Anytime you need a handy reference for Windows Key commands, hold the Windows key for about a second and it will appear.
Here are some of the shortcuts that appear when you open the shortcut guide, conveniently listed in alphabetical order:
- Windows + A: Open action center
- Windows + D: Hide or show the desktop
- Windows + E: Open the file explorer
- Windows + G: Open the Xbox Game Bar
- Windows + H: Open the dictation bar
- Windows + i: Open Windows Settings
- Windows + K: Open the Connect sidebar
- Windows + L: Lock your PC
- Windows + M: Minimize all windows
- Windows + R: Open the “Run” window
- Windows + S: Open Search
- Windows + U: Show Ease of Access Center
- Windows + X: Open the “Power User” menu
- Windows + comma (,): Look at the desktop
Bonus Windows keyboard shortcuts
There are also entries referring to Windows key commands on the virtual desktop, how to snap windows to parts of the screen with the keyboard, and more. Overall, there are at least 30 essential Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts that most users would find useful, and this guide covers most of them.
Coolest of all, with the Shortcut Guide, calling up those shortcuts is now just a keystroke away, should you ever forget it. Have fun exploring and learning more powerful ways to use Windows 10.
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