Super UserWindows 7 tips and tricks
[+63] [15] Pyrolistical
[2009-07-17 23:26:24]
[ windows-7 tips-and-tricks ]

Related Question:
Which windows tweaks do you use and they actually work? [1]

Tell us your favorite Windows 7 tips and tricks.

Here's some I bet you never have heard of:

From The Bumper List of Windows 7 Secrets [2]

And a few more off the top of my head:

What tips and tricks do you have?

search didn't find that question, and its not a dupe. this is tips and tricks not tweaks - Pyrolistical
Pyrolistical: Question is reopened. - TheTXI
(2) Was unaware of some of these thanks! +1 - Copas
Launch a pinned icon again by holding Shift and clicking on it, too. - GreenReign
This makes me almost want to dump my sans-winkey Ibm Model M, but not quite. - Peter Turner
[+51] [2009-09-01 09:05:57] Martin

Windows 7 Keyboard Shortcuts

Managing Windows

  1. [Win+M] – Minimize all open windows
  2. [Win+Shift+M] – Undo all window minimization
  3. [Win+D] :- Toggle showing the desktop
  4. [Windows+Up] – Maximize window
  5. [Windows+Down] – Minimize windows / Restore
  6. [Windows+Left] – Dock window to the left side
  7. [Windows+Right] – Dock window to the right side
  8. [Windows+Shift Up] – Maximize vertical size of window
  9. [Windows+Shift Down] – Restore vertical size
  10. [Windows+Shift Left] – Move window to left monitor
  11. [Windows+Shift Right] – Move window to right monitor
  12. [Win+Spacebar] – Aero desktop peek
  13. [Win+Home] – minimize/maximize all inactive windows
  14. [Alt+F4] - Close the active window
  15. [Alt+Tab] - Switch to previous active window
  16. [Alt+Esc] – Cycle through all open windows
  17. [Win+Tab]- Flip 3D
  18. [Ctrl+Win+Tab]- Persistent Flip 3D


  1. [Win+Any number (1, 2, 3, .., 0)] – open the corresponding taskbar pinned program
  2. [Ctrl+Click a pinned taskbar icon] – cycle through the program’s open windows
  3. [Shift+Click a pinned taskbar icon] -run a new instance of the program
  4. [Ctrl+Shift+Click a pinned taskbar icon] – run a new instance of the program as administrator
  5. [Shift+Right-click on icon] – Show window menu (Restore, Minimize, Move etc)
  6. [Shift+Right-click on grouped icon] - Show window menu (Restore All, Minimize All, Move All etc)
  7. [Win+T] – Cycle through applications on taskbar (showing its live preview)
  8. [Win+Shift+T] – As above, but in reverse order
  9. [Win+R] - Opens Run dialog box


  1. [Win+P] – show presentation mode projector options
  2. [Win+G] – show desktop gadgets
  3. [Win+L] – Lock computer
  4. [Win+X] - Mobility Center
  5. [Win++] - Zoom in
  6. [Win+-] – Zoom out
  7. [Win+=] – Magnifier

Windows Explorer

  1. [Alt+P] - Show/hide Preview Pane
  2. [Alt+Up] - Go up one level
  3. [Alt+Left/Right] - Back/forward

Thanks to Stefan Koell [1] for the list


[+33] [2009-07-20 23:06:10] pelms

As well as Windows Explorer featuring a 'New folder' button, you can also use 'Ctrl+Shift+N'.

(12) OMG - finally... - RedFilter
+1 - great tip! - Dave R.
Excellent tip, thanks! It's about time they added this. - Stewbob
(2) Yes. If nothing else (and there's plenty), this is the reason to upgrade. - bill weaver
There are a lot of Windows Explorer shortcuts that we don't know about, look them up if Windows Explorer is your daily place to be. :-) - Tom Wijsman
I've been using: Alt-F-W-F for years to do this. - Umber Ferrule
[+32] [2009-07-18 04:08:45] RCIX

Shake a window really fast (i mean really fast) to minimize all other windows.

+1, this is immensely useful when you have 10+ windows open and you only want to see one. - musicfreak
(13) The minimized windows come back if you shake the window again. - GreenReign
(6) needs too much shaking - Pyrolistical
Yeah i know... i guess they didn't want you to accidentally minimize the other windows when dragging one around. - RCIX
(1) @Pryolistical I tend to agree, but I think this was an "accessibility" thing designed to not harm the usability for users with motor problems / spasms. It'd be nice if this was a configurable setting though. - TM
Actually, if you shake it too fast, this function doesn't work ;-) - Stefan Thyberg
Love the shaking feature, didn't know that one - Edoode
This feature is for people like me who start frustrating when they don't find stuff. - Gab Royer
Excellent tip, thanks! - Stewbob
You're welcome. I found that you have to shake it in whatever the cneter is of your screen, so if you have two monitors you have to shake it back and forth across the screen borders. - RCIX
(3) Jerry: You gotta shake it up. Elaine: No. I'm sick of shaking. You've got to shake everything. Jerry picks up the bottle and shakes it gently. Jerry: Yeah, that's a real nuisance. This is killing me. - Zitrax
+1 for sensitivity, "I mean really fast", funny - tsilb
[+15] [2009-07-18 05:08:49] GreenReign

Win + T puts focus on the Taskbar. (Then use arrow keys to pick from your pinned apps.)

(3) Cool, I just tried it in vista and it works - hasen j
[+13] [2009-07-18 00:56:04] phuzion

Drag a window to the top, left, or right of the screen, and have it maximize to the entire screen (top), left half of the screen (left), or right half of the screen (right).

(5) You can also do this with the keyboard shortcuts: Win+Up, Win+Left etc. - pelms
[+7] [2009-07-20 22:47:08] pelms

Double-click the top edge of a window (or drag the top edge to the top of the screen) to maximize it vertically without changing the width (great for web browsers).
The window can then be moved horizontally by the title bar without it moving vertically.

How do you turn off vertical maximize? I do that by mistake all the time. - Pyrolistical
the double-click trick works on other versions on windows, and i LOVE this trick... - studiohack
[+6] [2009-08-09 17:46:51] Ole Lynge

Win+Home to minimize all windows apart from the active window. Press Win+Home again to restore the other windows.

[+4] [2009-08-16 06:54:41] Chris Pietschmann

Win+Arrow Keys to maximize, restore, minimize and to size/position the window to take up the left or right half of the screen.

  • Win + Up = Maximize
  • Win + Down = Restore/Minimize
  • Win + Left = Move to Left side of Screen
  • Win + Right = Move to Right side of Screen

Also, I love being able to maximize and restore windows by simply dragging them to and from the top of the screen. This is particularly useful when moving a maximized window from one monitor to another (in a dual monitor setup). You simple drag it from the top of one screen to the other and like magic it's still maximized but now on the other monitor.

[+4] [2009-08-29 09:06:11] MasterCorban

Win+space to take a glimpse at your desktop.

Win+m to minimise all windows.

Win+T to go through all open windows on your taskbar (like Alt+Tab but not)

I could reel them all off, and look clever, but here is my source:

And they have pictures!

[+3] [2009-07-18 05:04:35] GreenReign

Virtual PC [1] has good integration with Windows 7 -- its Windows XP mode is good for things that just refuse to run on 64-bit Windows or don't work well with UAC.


pfft yeah, except for the issue where it complains that your hardware doesn't support virtualization when it really does, and only after the first subsequent reboot after you've already set up your VMs... so you end up having to go back to VPC 2007... sigh... - tsilb
[+2] [2009-08-16 06:59:37] Chris Pietschmann

Launch another instance of an application by Middle Clicking on its icon in the Taskbar. Or, you can Right-Click and select the application name to launch a new instance.

(1) or hold shift and then click the app - Kip
[+2] [2009-09-03 17:24:54] Factor Mystic

Win+G doesn't just show Desktop Gadgets like Win+Space does, it puts focus on a gadget and cycles as you press it again and again. This is analogous to Win+Space behavior in Vista, and is very useful when you need to interact with your gadgets and not just look at them.

[+1] [2009-08-16 06:57:31] Chris Pietschmann

Win + Number Keys to Run an application from the Taskbar. You just press the number that corresponds to the application icon in the Taskbar according to the order they appear. The first one is 1.

Say the first Icon in the Taskbar is Internet Explorer, you just press Win + 1 and it opens up Internet Explorer. If an instance of the application is already running, then it just switches to that application just the same as if you pressed Alt+Tab or clicked on it.

[+1] [2009-08-09 18:06:10] Kris Erickson

When using Remote Desktop (connecting to a Windows 7 machine), using Dual Monitors (with the Remote Desktop /span command) if you use the Win+Left and Right Arrow the window maximizes to the screen not the entire desktop (which the Maximize button does). Fairly edge case, but I have been trying things like splitview [1] to get this working (which does, except with the occasional crash and the $40 price tag).


[-1] [2011-03-12 17:23:12] Merstzik
  1. Win+e - opens windows explorer.
  2. After opening run prompt (Win+r) type:
    • calc - opens calculator
    • notepad - opens notepad
    • cmd - command prompt
    • mspaint - paint

This is nothing new and surely not windows 7 specific. - fretje
question is not about only windows 7 tips and tricks. If it is then alt+f4 is not relevant too. - Merstzik