Shortcut keys for PC: 80+ keyboard shortcuts for your Windows laptop/ PC that will help you work faster

Windows shortcuts are key combinations that can drastically improve your usage experience, and here are all the essentials that you need to know.

Keyboard shortcuts on Windows PCs can drastically change your user experience, and make your life smoother and far less challenging. No longer do you need to look around for options across bars and menus and access the features you need in a combination of keys. While some Windows shortcuts give you access to the very basic features, others offer essential key combinations for navigating and browsing on your PC. Without further ado, here’s looking at what Windows shortcuts are, and the pick of the pile that you must know.

What are shortcut keys in Windows?

Shortcut keys on Windows are combinations of sticky keys, such as Ctrl, Alt and Shift, with a range of keys. From basic tasks such as accessing the Start menu without needing the mouse, to shifting across browser tabs, keyboard shortcuts can cover a wide range of tasks without needing mouse or trackpad pointers.

Here, we break down the Windows shortcuts into three types, based on the tasks that you may require to do on Windows PC.

Basic Windows shortcut keys

The basic Windows shortcuts include the most basic tasks and are shortcuts that you would require on an everyday basis. Here’s what they are.

ShortcutsTask
Ctrl+XCut selected item
Ctrl+CCopy selected item
Ctrl+VPaste selected item
Ctrl+FFind the phrase in the current page
Ctrl+ASelect all text or items on screen
Ctrl+ZUndo last action
Ctrl+YRedo last action
Ctrl+WClose folder or browser tab
Ctrl+SSave current file or page
Ctrl+PPrint current file or page
HomeGo to the beginning of the current line on text editor
Ctrl+HomeGo to the beginning of the text editor
EndGo to the end of the current line on text editor
Ctrl+EndGo to the end of the text editor
Shift+HomeSelect line on text editor till the start of line
Shift+EndSelect line on text editor till the end of line
Ctrl+Left arrowMove cursor one word to the left
Ctrl+Right arrowMove cursor one word to the right

Essential shortcut keys for Windows PCs

Beyond the basic navigation on Windows PCs, there are a host of navigation and additional shortcuts that are essential as well. Here’s what they are.

ShortcutsTask
Win+DShow the desktop OR minimise all windows
Win+AOpen Action center
Win+Left arrowSnap windows to the left
Win+Right arrowSnap windows to the right
Win+Up arrowMaximise windows
Win+Down arrowMinimise windows
Win+TabOpen multitasking view
Alt+TabChange apps
Ctrl+EscOpen Start menu
Ctrl+Shift+EscOpen Task Manager
Win+LLock desktop
Win+ROpen Run command
Win+MMinimize all windows
Win+R+”control”Open Control Centre
Win+S (or Q)Search through Start menu
Win+BSet focus notification area in the Taskbar
F2Rename a selected file
Win+PrntScrnTake instant screenshot
Win+Ctrl+DAdd virtual desktop
Win+XOpen hidden menu from Taskbar
F1View help information on browsers and apps
F5Refresh the current window
Ctrl+DBookmark browser page
Ctrl+NCreate new document, open new browser window or add new folder
Ctrl+OOpen new file
Alt+F4Close file or app

Quick access shortcut keys for PC

Finally, there is also a range of quick access Windows shortcuts that help you access a range of functions, where a direct shortcut view is not apparent. Here’s our pick.

ShortcutsTask
Alt+FAccess File menu
Alt+EAccess Edit menu
Ctrl+BBolden selected text
Ctrl+IItalicise selected text
Ctrl+UUnderline selected text
Shift+DelPermanently delete file
Ctrl+KInsert hyperlink to selected text
Alt+EnterOpen properties menu on the selected file
Ctrl+Shift+EscOpen the task manager
Win+COpen AI virtual assistant Cortana

Other shortcut keys for laptop/ PC (Windows)

Shortcut keysTask
Win+FLaunch Feedback Hub app
Win+GLaunch Game bar app
Win+YChange input between desktop and Mixed Reality
Win+OLock Device orientation
Win+TCycle through apps in Taskbar
Win+ZSwitch input between the desktop experience and Windows Mixed Reality
Win+JSet focus
Win+HOpen dictation feature

Windows laptop/ PC shortcuts for special characters

Here are some of the shortcut keys for laptop/ PC, powered by Windows, to add special characters:

ShortcutsSpecial characters
Alt+0128€ (Euro currency)
Alt+0153
Alt+0162¢ (Cent symbol)
Alt+0163£ (British Pound currency)
Alt+0165¥ (Japanese Yen currency)
Alt+0169©
Alt+0174®
Alt+0176° (degree symbol)
Alt+0177± (plus/minus symbol)
Alt+0191¿
Alt+0198Æ
Alt+0223ß
Alt+0224à
Alt+0228ä
Alt+0231ç
Alt+0232è
Alt+0236ì
Alt+0241ñ
Alt+0242ò
Alt+0246ö
Alt+0248ø
Alt+0252ü