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How Can I Make Ctrl+Alt+Del Go Right to the Task Manager in Windows 7?


Years of Windows use has Ctrl+Alt+Del ingrained in your muscle memory, however in Windows 7 and up it no longer takes you directly to the Task Manager, but the Welcome Screen instead. What to do? The solution is as simple as learning a new trick.

Today’s Question & Answer session comes to us courtesy of SuperUser—a subdivision of Stack Exchange, a community-driven grouping of Q&A web sites.

The Question

SuperUser reader Belgi has a very simple request:

I am using Windows 7 and when I press Ctrl+Alt+Del I first go into the Welcome Screen and only then I can go into the Task Manager.

I have no use for any other option on this screen, can I change it so the combination will get my directly to the Task Manager?

Surely there is a trick, registry hack, or some clever maneuver that can help poor Belgi, no?

The Answer

SuperUser reader Xander27 has exactly the kind of answer we like…

You can use Ctrl+Shift+Esc for this.

… the dead simple ones that teach us all a new trick or two. I can’t speak for the other distinguished members of the How-To Geek staff, but I will hang my head in shame at the realization that I’d been (for years!) using a keyboard shortcut and then a mouse click to achieve what a keyboard shortcut alone could achieve.


Have another clever keyboard shortcut to share? Sound off in the the comments. Want to read more answers from other tech-savvy Stack Exchange users? Check out the full discussion thread here.

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 05/28/13

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