Show Keyboard Shortcut Access Keys in Windows Vista

Since moving to Windows Vista, a lot of the keyboard shortcuts that I was used to just don’t work quite the same anymore. As a keyboard junkie, I find it imperative to learn the shortcut keys, so it’s good that there is a quick way to enable underlining of all shortcut keys.

When you underline the shortcut keys, it helps reinforce them in your mind every time you start to do any task that could be done with the keyboard instead. This is why I enable this option when I first start learning a new version of Windows.

To turn this on, open up Control Panel, and type the word “underline” into the search box. You’ll be presented with a link for “Underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys”, which you’ll want to click.


In the resulting screen, scroll down until you see “Make it easier to use keyboard shortcuts”, and check the box there.


Now you’ll notice that the menu options have the access key underlined by default:


The more keyboard shortcuts you learn, the easier it will be to get around in Vista.

Lowell Heddings is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He spends all his free time making sure this site can bring you fresh geekery on a daily basis, and has been doing so for over eleven years.