Windows Keyboard Shortcuts

The Windows key

Posted in by estephen on February 23rd, 2007

Public domain image of the white four-segment Windows key icon shown on a black key.  From SXC via Wikipedia; artist or photographer unknown; creation date unknown.

The Windows key is a special key (not available on all keyboards). It’s usually down near the space bar, between the Ctrl and Alt keys.

When you press the Windows key by itself, it opens and closes the Start menu.

When you press the Windows key with certain other keys, you can accomplish different tasks:

12 Responses to 'The Windows key'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'The Windows key'.

  1. Dom said,

    on April 16th, 2007 at 6:17 pm

    Do you know how to change the WIN + (any number) shortcuts? I can’t find any literature regarding them on the internet.

    Here is what I found when I experimented:
    WIN+1: Nothing I can tell
    +2: Nothing
    +3: Runs my “Suspend.exe” program (which is located at C:\suspend.exe) – not sure why it runs this program… (I have this program set at a shortcut for my Fujitsu ECO button on my laptop)
    +4: Nothing
    +5: Nothing
    +6: Lauches “cdplayer.exe” – but it closes right after…if you pay attention to the taskbar, you will briefly notice a cd icon show up. I only found out that it was cdplayer.exe by opening task manager and then pressing the shortcut repeatably.
    +7: cdplayer.exe
    +8: cdplayer.exe
    +9: cdplayer.exe
    +0: Starts the screensaver

    Can you replicate these shortcuts? And also, do you know how to modify them? Thanks!


  2. estephen said,

    on April 17th, 2007 at 1:21 am

    I can’t replicate any of them. I suspect they’re set up by the manufacturer of your computer via some kind of proprietary software they install on the hard drive at the factory. Sorry that I can’t help any further.

  3. BMay said,

    on May 18th, 2007 at 12:54 pm


    Try the program WinKey, it is customizable and very user friendly.

  4. duncan said,

    on January 16th, 2008 at 8:21 am

    In Vista, the Windows key + ” will execute the program that is in the shortcut bar at the bottom fo the screen

  5. Cathy said,

    on August 26th, 2008 at 11:01 am

    My current went off today and when I turned on my comp I only got very small icons. also, my email was in v ery small print. How do I change it to be readable ?


  6. estephen said,

    on August 26th, 2008 at 11:15 am

    Vista or XP? Assuming XP, for big icons on the Start menu, try Ctrl+Esc -> Settings -> Taskbar and Start Menu -> Start Menu -> Customize -> Large Icons (or for Classic, deselect Show Small Icons)

    For your e-mail, try Ctrl+Plus a couple of times, or change the settings in Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Display -> Appearance and then choose a larger theme.

  7. ALi Naghavi said,

    on September 5th, 2009 at 4:58 am

    How to Close these Shortcuts ?
    please mail me !!

  8. shanu said,

    on December 22nd, 2011 at 4:45 am


  9. estephen said,

    on December 22nd, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Shanu, I just made a new post to go over Windows 7 shutdown shortcuts, hope they help!

  10. nimd4 said,

    on March 20th, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    @Dom, @BMay, besides WinKey, there’s also and its scripts are @

  11. Santosh Kumar said,

    on December 14th, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    When we use shortcut keys worked very fast.

  12. zohaib said,

    on May 9th, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    windows keys are very special for us PC so thanks for providing useful information

Leave a Reply