The essential Windows keyboard shortcuts for gamers

While your mouse is a PC peripheral you can’t go without these days, doing everything on your PC by using it exclusively is quite a laborious process.

Your keyboard is one of the most powerful tools at your disposal when it comes to multitasking, using multi-monitor setups, increasing your productivity, and increasing the speed at which you complete tasks.

Here are the essential keyboard shortcuts that you should commit to memory, as you’ll undoubtedly use them regularly.

Windows key shortcuts

  • Windows + E — Opens File Explorer
  • Windows + Number keys — Opens the app on the taskbar corresponding to the numbered position.
  • Windows + I — Opens Settings.
  • Windows + L — Locks your PC.
  • Windows + V — Opens your clipboard history (if it is your first time using this, you will need to enable it after pressing the keys.)
  • Windows + A — Opens Action Centre (where you can turn on Wi-Fi and Bluetooth).
  • Windows + K — Opens the Connect pane, allowing you quick access to any connected devices.
  • Windows + D — Minimise all windows, and repeat to bring them back. (You can also shake the active window from left to right using your mouse.)
  • Windows + P — Opens the Project panel for multi-monitor configurations.
  • Windows + X — Opens the Quick Link menu (which you can also access by right-clicking on the Start button), giving you access to Device Manager, Disk Management, and Task Manager.
  • Windows + arrow keys — Snap the active window to the different halves or corners of the screen. If you snap your window left or right first, then use the down arrow, you will move the window into your screen’s corner. Pressing the down arrow with a maximised window active will minimise it.
  • Windows + Shift + Left/Right arrow — Move your window to your other monitor.
  • Windows + Shift + S — Opens a quick menu for the Snipping tool.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Windows + B — Resets your video driver for when you are experiencing graphical glitches or display issues with multiple monitor setups.
  • Windows + G — Opens Xbox Game Bar.
  • Windows + Alt + G — Records the last 30 seconds of gameplay.
  • Windows + Alt + R — Starts/stops recording.
  • Windows + Ctrl + D — Creates a new virtual desktop. This is useful for multitasking and organising your workflow.
  • Windows + Ctrl + Right/Left arrow — Cycles through your virtual desktops.
  • Windows + Ctrl + F4 — Closes current virtual desktop.

General shortcuts

  • Alt + F4 — Closes the active window/app.
  • Alt + Tab — Let’s you switch between windows by continuously pressing Tab until you select the desired app.
  • Ctrl + Alt + Tab — Does the same as Alt + Tab but keeps the app view open after releasing the keys.
  • Shift + Click — Opens a new window of the selected app/browser tab.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Click/Enter — Runs an app as administrator.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Esc — Opens task manager.
  • Alt + Enter — Forces a windowed game to display full-screen. Press it again to revert to windowed mode.
  • Shift + Delete — Use at your own peril since this bypasses the recycle bin and permanently deletes a file.
  • Alt + double click — Displays the selected item’s properties.
  • F2 — Renames a file or folder.
  • F5/Ctrl + R — Refreshes the active page/app

Read: All the big updates from Electronic Arts Q4 financial results


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The essential Windows keyboard shortcuts for gamers

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