General Tricks

Bring back a closed tab – We have dedicated a section to web browsing further down below, but this one is too useful to be missed. Accidentally closed a tab? Simply press Ctrl + Shift + T to reopen the most recently closed tab and get back to what you were doing (Cmd + Shift + T on Macs).

Window snapping and multiple monitor control – Pressing the Windows Key + Arrow Keys will cause a window to quickly snap to each side of either monitor. Alternatively, hitting Shift + Windows Key + Arrows will cause the window to jump to the other monitor. While pressing Windows + P will allow you to quickly set up a second display or projector.

Password-protect files – A simple way to lock down access to certain files is to create an encrypted archive. Odds are you already have installed a copy of 7-Zip, WinRAR, or The Unarchiver (Mac) or some equivalent. Create a new archive, select to encrypt its contents and password protect them.

Password protect files A simple way to lock down access

Undo everywhere to fix those little mistakes – Did you know you can undo almost any action? Ctrl + Z is the ultimate hot key, and for sure you knew about it already, however note that undo doesn’t just apply to typing. If you accidentally delete or move a file, you can hit Ctrl + Z to bring it right back to where it was (Ctrl + Y will redo whatever you undid).

YouTube keyboard shortcuts – If you thought using the spacebar to pause a YouTube video was effective (except when focus is elsewhere and it doesn’t work), instead try using K for pausing, while J and L will step backward/forward 10 seconds. M works for mute. Super handy.

Find your Wi-Fi password – In Windows, go to the “Network and Sharing Center.” Right click on the Wi-Fi network connection icon > Wireless Properties. Click on Show Characters box to show your Wi-Fi password.

  • In macOS all passwords are stored in the Keychain app. Use Spotlight to find “Keychain Access.” Open the app and find your Wi-Fi network name in the list of saved credentials. Double click it and then click the box to show your password (it will require your OS level password).
mac os

Windows hidden “god mode” folder Windows offers a centralized Control Panel for all of the OS settings, making it easy for users to tweak everything from desktop background to setting up a VPN. To enter this mode, create a new folder with this exact name (copy and paste it): God Mode.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}. The folder icon will change to a Control Panel-style icon, and you will be able to jump in and change all kinds of settings.

windows

Typing Tricks

 

Paste the plain text of what was copied When you copy text from any source, programs will usually include any formatting that comes with it. To paste this as plain text, press Ctrl + Shift + V instead of the standard Ctrl + V, and the system will paste unformatted text. This also works on Mac: Cmd + Shift + V.

Note that many but not all programs follow this parameter, particularly Microsoft programs like Word or Outlook don’t, which is annoying. There are a few alternatives that go beyond copying and pasting in Notepad: 1) Ctrl + Alt + V will show a ‘paste special’ dialog box. 2) Ctrl + Spacebar will remove formatting in already pasted text. 3) Download Puretext and choose a hotkey to always paste plain text with it.

Delete an entire word Instead of deleting a single letter, pressing Ctrl + Backspace will delete the entire word behind the cursor. This makes deleting text quicker if you screw up a whole word.

Move cursor to beginning of the next or previous word Moving the cursor around manually while typing is a great way to make your work take longer than it needs to. To speed up the process, move the cursor around with keyboard shortcuts. To move it to the beginning of the previous word, use Ctrl + Left Arrow. To move it to the beginning of the next word, use Ctrl + Right Arrow. In macOS you can accomplish the same using the Option key. To select words/paragraphs as you’re going, hold Shift + Ctrl + Arrow (up or down will select entire bodies of text).

File Management Tricks

Rename a file quickly Right-clicking and selecting rename is not very efficient. Instead press F2 while a file is selected to change its name. To alter the name of another file, type Tab without deselecting the current file. On Macs, hitting Enter will rename (which may sound counter-intuitive to Windows users) while Cmd + O is used to open.

Cloud backup important files If you’re working on a critical project, make sure you aren’t backing up locally only. Services like Dropbox, Google Drive, or any of the other popular cloud storage solutions will do the legwork for you in the background. Of course, you can also throw the files on a thumb drive or external HDD to be extra safe, but backing up to the cloud can be done seamlessly.

cloud backup

Updates.