20 OS X Keyboard Shortcuts You Might Not Know

Mastering the keyboard will not only increase your navigation speed but it can also help with wrist fatigue. Here are some lesser known OS X shortcuts to help you become a keyboard ninja.

After our article last week covering keyboard shortcuts for Windows that you might be unaware of, we had lots of requests for the best OS X shortcuts as well, so we’ve compiled a list of shortcuts you may or may not be aware of.

Image by Daniel Novta.

Global Menu Shortcuts

Fn-Arrow Keys is the equivalent of the Home/End and PageUp/PageDown buttons on a PC; Left-arrow and right-arrow for Home and End, Up-arrow and down-arrow for PageUp and PageDown.

Fn-Delete deletes one character to the right of the cursor, same as forward-delete on a PC.

Ctrl-F2 moves focus to the Menubar. You can use the arrow keys to select menu items and enter to apply them.

Ctrl-F3 moves focus to the Dock. You can navigate around with the arrow keys to select applications and enter to switch to them.

Ctrl-Cmd-D displays a popup dictionary for a selected word. Just hover over the word with the cursor and hit the shortcut. Useful for quick definitions.

Cmd-Q quits the current application.

Opt-Cmd-Escape opens the force quit menu where you can selectively force quit applications.

Holding Shift-Cmd-Opt-Esc for three seconds force quits the frontmost application (Leopard and Snow Leopard only).

Ctrl-Eject opens the shutdown/restart/sleep dialogue.

Ctrl-Shift-Eject puts the display to sleep immediately.

Opt-Cmd-Eject puts the computer to sleep immediately.

Ctrl-Opt-Cmd-Eject shuts down the computer immediately.

Finder Shortcuts

Enter renames selected file.

Cmd-O opens the selected folder in the Finder.

Shift-Cmd-N creates a new folder in the current directory.

Cmd-J opens the View Options panel, where you can tweak settings for how a specific folder appears in the Finder, such as icon size.

Cmd-I opens the Get Info panel for the selected item.

Cmd-Delete sends selected file(s) to Trash.

Shift-Cmd-Delete empties the Trash with confirmation.

Shift-Opt-Cmd-Delete empties the Trash without confirmation.

Alex is a Mac geek and former hackintosher, as well as other stuff.

  • Published 12/12/10
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