Alt+3: Search the web instead of using the file dialog (Office)

I have to admit I never use this one.

But, just suppose: You’re in Word or Excel or PowerPoint. You’ve opened up a file dialog box. It could be an Open file dialog box (by pressing Ctrl+O or using the File | Open menu, or by pressing Ctrl+F12). Or it could be a Save As file dialog box (by pressing F12, or selecting File | Save As).

And then you change your mind, and want to search the web instead. Instead of hitting Esc to cancel the file dialog box, and then pressing Ctrl+Esc to get the Start menu and then running your web browser, and then opening up a search engine, you can do all of that with one button. You could just use your mouse to hit this button, the “Search the Web” button:

[Screenshot of Save As dialog box with Search the Web button circled]

Or, you could press Alt+3. When you do so, instantly the dialog box closes (with no action taken), and your web browser comes up, with a search engine displayed.

(Note to readers: If you know how to change the search engine used here from MSN Live to something else, please let me know. The standard methods don’t seem to work.)

It’s a pity this keyboard shortcut only works in Office apps and not all apps that use a file dialog box.

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