Windows 7 Tips and Tricks
With Windows 7 becoming the go to choice for new PC’s, many users may find themselves asking whats new with this version, or wondering how they can be more efficient with certain tasks. Below we’ll outline some tips and tricks to save you time while working and help make it easier to access the things most important to your daily duties.
Use Keyboard Shortcuts:
Keyboard shortcuts are probably the most underused part of any version of Windows and have been expanded in version 7. I’m sure most of you have seen the commercials advertising the “snap” feature, where you can dock one window to one side of your screen and another to the other side, but what they don’t tell you is this can be done with a series of keys as well. Below are some of the more helpful shortcuts for the everyday user.
- Win+Left Arrow and Win+Right Arrow dock the window to the left and right side of the screen
- Win+Up Arrow and Win+Down Arrow maximize and restore/minimize
- Win+M minimizes everything
- Alt+Up, Alt+Left Arrow, Alt+Right Arrow navigate to parent folder, or browse Back and Forward through folders in Explorer
- Win+Home minimizes/restores all open windows except the active window
- Middle mouse click a task bar icon while not a keyboard shortcut, this will open a new window of whatever the application you click on is, for example opening a new word document, email, or web browser page.
Quick access to Taskbar Icons
A lot of people are used to putting shortcuts to their most frequently used programs on their taskbar. What most don’t realize is you can access these with the keyboard as well. You can rearrange icons on the taskbar as you wish and start new, or switch to running programs of the first ten taskbar programs using Win+1, Win+2, and so on.
Create Keyboard Shortcuts for Programs
You can create keyboard shortcuts for any program in Windows 7. Right-click the program icon and select Properties. Then select the Shortcut tab, click in the Shortcut key box, and then enter the keyboard shortcut you would like for that programa.
Pin Frequently Used Folders to the Taskbar
Right-click, drag, and pin your favorite folders to Windows Explorer on the taskbar. They will now show up in the Jump List when you right click on Explorer giving you quick access to your favorite folders.
Adjust Screen Text with Clear Type
Often we will see users with nice monitors, that aren’t using them at the proper resolutions or have other features out of focus, making them look grainy and distorted. Use Clear Type Tuner for the best look on your LCD monitor or laptop screen. Type ‘cttune’ in the Start Menu search box, or go to the Control Panel Display applet, and select Adjust ClearType Text from the left.
Customize the Power Button
If you restart your computer more often than you shut it down, change the default Shutdown power button to Restart. Right-click on Start, select Properties, and choose the Power button action that you use the most.
Add Videos to Start Menu
Windows 7 does not place a link to your videos on the Start Menu by default. To add a link to your videos on the Start Menu, right-click Start, select Properties, click on Customize. In the Videos section at the bottom, choose Display as a link
View Expanded ‘Send To’ Menu
To get a more comprehensive menu when right clicking on a folder/file your trying to modify hold down Shift while right-clicking on the file or folder.
Some of these tips may not be helpful to you, but if even a few of them peaked your interest, then they will likely help increase your productivity and optimize your windows 7 experience.