Windows 7 Keyboard Shortcuts for Power Users

I read Tim Sneath’s blog and he had a massive post on some secrets in Windows 7.  He had some great tips around keyboard shortcuts so I thought I would consolidate them for everyone’s benefits.

Taskbar Shortcuts


In Windows 7, you now permanently pin applications to the bar, internally, we call this feature the “super-bar.”  In addition to clicking, you can push “WIN+[number key]” to run the applications.

  • Win+1 launches the first app on the left (Internet Explorer)
  • Win+2 launches the second app (Libraries Explorer)

Connecting to Projectors or Secondary Displays


  • Win+P is a no nonsense way to connecting displays to computers and switching from single monitor to dual-display
  • Win+Shift+Left Arrow – Move the window to the screen on the left
  • Win+Shift+Right Arrow – Move the window to the screen on the right 

Managing Windows

  • Win+Home – Minimize all windows except the current active window
  • Win+Left Arrow and Win+Right Arrow – Resizes windows based on the new Win7 window docking feature;
  • Win+Up Arrow and Win+Down Arrow maximizes and restores / minimizes;
  • Win+Shift+Up Arrow and Win+Shift+Down Arrow maximizes and restores the vertical size.
  • Win+T – This is like “alt-tabbing” through the Peek menus.  Once you hit Win+T you can use the arrow keys to navigate left right and up the windows tree.
  • Win+Space – By pushing this is and hold the Win-key, you can peek at your desktop without dragging it to the bottom right corner
  • CTRL+shift +click – when you click on an application while hold CTRL+shift, it will run with elevated permissions i.e. Administrator Privileges.
  • Win+E – opens Explorer

These are great keyboard enhancements.  One feature that needs to be improved is the Win+Up Arrow shortcut.  The problem is that if the user minimizes all the way with Win+Down Arrow to the taskbar, there is no way to re-maxmize the window in one easy shortcut.  Techincally, Win+Up Arrow should remember applications that were minimized, or as a last resort, go through a brute force approach restore windows to the desktop.  Beside this beta feature shortcoming, these are welcomed enhancements to Windows and just shows that Microsoft hasn’t forgotton about the keyboard users.