Let’s face it – the Windows Vista shutdown dialog is one of the worst pieces of UI nonsense ever. Just look at it… what were they thinking with that popup dialog?

What you might not realize is that you don’t have to use the mouse to access the functions on that ridiculous menu. Let’s start by first hitting the Windows key to pop up the start menu.

Now use the right arrow key, and you’ll see that the Sleep button is highlighted. If you hit enter, your computer will immediately enter sleep mode. That’s only 3 keystrokes… not too bad.

If you use the right arrow key 3 times, the menu will pop up, and then you can either use the up/down arrow keys, or you can use the quick access key on the menu to choose the item you want. Notice how the current menu item is highlighted.

So here’s the list of shortcut combos for your enjoyment:

Win + Right Arrow + Enter Sleep Mode
Win + Right Arrow (x3) + Enter Shut Down
Win + Right Arrow (x3) + U Shut Down
Win + Right Arrow (x3) + R Restart
Win + Right Arrow (x3) + W Switch User

Now keep in mind that there are much faster ways to perform these tasks if you really want to, but it’s important to learn keyboard shortcuts.

Profile Photo for Lowell Heddings Lowell Heddings
Lowell is the founder and CEO of How-To Geek. He’s been running the show since creating the site back in 2006. Over the last decade, Lowell has personally written more than 1000 articles which have been viewed by over 250 million people. Prior to starting How-To Geek, Lowell spent 15 years working in IT doing consulting, cybersecurity, database management, and programming work.
Read Full Bio »