I love the feeling of whizzing around my Windows 10 desktop, opening and closing windows, trashing files, renaming folders and more, all without touching a mouse. Read on for 10 ultra-handy things you can do using Windows keyboard shortcuts.

1. Open the File Explorer

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows key + E

Easily the most valuable utility on your PC, the File Explorer (formerly known as Windows Explorer) lets you view, sort, and inspect all the files and folders on your system, as well as any connected or networked drives. Launch File Explorer in a flash with this simple keyboard shortcut.


2. Minimize all open windows

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows + M

Got a bunch of open windows cluttering your Windows desktop? Use this keyboard shortcut to make them all hide in the Windows taskbar (the bar that sits at the bottom of your Windows desktop).

3. Peek at the desktop

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows key + comma

Just want to take a quick look at what’s behind your open desktop windows? Press and hold the Windows key plus the comma to take a peek. When you release the keys, your open windows will instantly reappear.

4. Lock the screen

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows key + L

Need to step away from your PC for a moment? Here’s a keyboard shortcut that lets you quickly shield your desktop from prying eyes.

5. Open Settings panel

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows + I

You can tweak everything from your lock screen password to your screensaver by diving into the Settings panel, and you don’t have to click to do it.

6. Rename a file or folder

Windows keyboard shortcut: F2

Nope, no need to right click a file or a folder to give it a new name. Instead, just select the file, then tap a single function key.

7. Put an item in the Recycle Bin

Windows keyboard shortcut: Control + D or just press the Delete key

Want to toss a file or folder into the Windows Recycle Bin without having to drag and drop? Just select it, then use this keyboard shortcut.

8. Delete the selected item immediately

Windows keyboard shortcut: Shift + Delete

Here’s a clever trick you might not know: rather than putting a file or a folder in the Recycle Bin for future deletion, you can instead wipe it instantly off your hard drive. All you have to do is use this simple keyboard shortcut.

9. Launch an app in the Windows taskbar

Windows keyboard shortcut: Windows key + a number key

Want to open or launch a pinned item in the taskbar using only the keyboard? Just press the Windows key, then press the number key that corresponds to the order of the taskbar item, counting from left to right (and not counting the Task View button, which sits immediately to the right of the search box.)

10. Move the cursor quickly between words and paragraphs

Windows keyboard shortcut: Control + right arrow, left arrow, down arrow, or up arrow

Here’s a powerful shortcut that’ll let you zoom around a document with ease. By pressing Control + the left arrow, you’ll zip the cursor to the beginning of the next word. Press Control + right arrow to move the cursor to the previous word. Control + up arrow sends the cursor to the beginning of the previous paragraph, while Control + down arrow make the cursor jump to the beginning of the next paragraph.

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