Windows Insiders share their favorite tips and tricks to improve workflow

Even the savviest of PC users could learn a thing or two from a quick peek at these Windows favorites.



Accidental tab closure:

  • Have you ever been working with 15 tabs open (by the way, that might be too many) and accidentally closed one? With that many tabs open do you know which one it was? Fear not, by pressing Ctrl+Shift+T your most recently closed tab will appear like magic. Jot this one down, it will happen eventually.

Speaking of too many tabs:

  • Each tab you open is looked at by your computer as a separate process. So, more tabs=less performance. We aren’t saying only use one tab, just close the ones you don’t need. Especially if your machine is running slowly.


Keyboard short cuts:

Here is a VERY short list of available keyboard shortcuts:

  • Ctrl+C  to Copy

  • Ctrl+V  to Paste

  • Ctrl+F  to open the find menu. This will search a document of webpage for a keyword(s)

  • Ctrl+S  for a quick way to save a document

  • Ctrl+P  to print a document or webpage

  • Ctrl+A  to select ALL parts of a document or URL or all files in a folder.

  • Ctrl+E  to open up your File Explorer, aka the manila folder icon on your taskbar.

  • Ctrl+W will close the current tab you have open in most browsers.

  • Alt+Left arrow  works as way to move to the previous page, +Right arrow takes you forward.

  • Windows key + pause break to open the system menu.

  • Windows key + “+” or “-“ to zoom in and out



 More than just scrolling:

You know that wheel in the middle of your mouse? It can open a link to a new tab instead of taking over the current one. You can also use it to quickly open another instance of a program by clicking the wheel while hovering over a program on your task bar.

Desktop access:

Need to get to your desktop quickly but you have 11 different windows open? Just hit the Windows key+D and all open windows will be minimized. Pressing it again will bring them back up. Not to be used to quickly close social media sites when your boss is approaching.


Repeat Excel commands:

New to Excel? By pressing the F4 button while in Excel you can repeat the last command. If you select and color a cell, you then can highlight any other cell(s) and color it the same by hitting F4.


Need a quick pic of the screen?

Windows comes with a handy built in program called the Snipping tool. This will allow you to grab a screen shot of part or the entirety of your monitor. This is useful as a documentation tool or a way to quickly reference a bit of information after a program or window is closed. We find it beneficial to be able to see pop up and error messages and the snipping tool is a terrific way to catch those messages before they disappear. You can type “snipping tool” into the search field built into the task bar on Windows 10 machines. Or, look in the start menu under Windows accessories to find it.


Default programs:

Windows has its own ideas as to what programs should be used as a default. For example, windows really wants you to use Edge as your default program to view PDFs. But most people would rather use something like Adobe, here is how to make that happen.

Press Windows key+I to open the Settings menu and select Apps. Next, scroll down to Default Apps in the left pane and click on it.

Next click on Choose default apps by file type and scroll until you see PDFs. Sitting immediately to the right you will see the default program for that file type, click it and change it to your preference.


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