Text-editing keyboard shortcuts also function similarly between Mac and Windows. This is a bigger difference than it seems at first glance.
Cut, copy, paste, and other common shortcuts
The Command key is directly adjacent to the Space bar on Mac keyboards, while the Ctrl key is in the bottom-left corner on Windows keyboards. The way you have to position your fingers is different, so your muscle memory can interfere with these shortcuts. As on Windows, you can press Shift to select text while using these shortcuts. For example, hold down Shift and Option and tap the left arrow repeatedly to select entire previous words. Mission Control How to Use Multiple Desktops on a Mac.
Read our our guide to using Mission Control for more keyboard shortcuts and tricks. Image Credit: But it's also possible to set up the Touch Bar so it always shows the function keys in those apps. You can then select the app s. This web browser tip can sometimes be a lifesaver. Got a story?
Use the Tab Key to Switch Between Dialog Buttons in Mac OS X
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Jonny is a freelance writer who has been writing mainly about Apple and technology since Current Job Listings. Command-W Closes the active window you are currently in. Command-Y A lot of people use QuickLook to preview items they're looking for. Command-M Press this combination to minimize the front app window to Dock, or press Command-Option-M to minimize all the windows belonging to the front app. Command-Space The combination that can change your life, Command-Space invokes Spotlight, just depress these keys and start typing your query.
Command-L The fastest way to make a search or navigate to a Website in Safari, Command-L instantly selects the address bar: Command-Tab Open application switcher, keeping Command pressed, use Tab to navigate to the app you hope to use.
Command-Option-D Show or hide the Dock from within most apps. Fn-left arrow or right arrow Jump directly to the top or bottom of a web page using the Function key and the right to the bottom of the page or left to the top of the page arrows on the keyboard. Option-Brightness Up or down Use this command to quickly launch Displays preferences. Touch Bar tip No. Since the s, "alt" typically appears on the key, as well, for use as an Alt key with non-Mac software, such as Unix and Windows programs.
However, the Option key in a Mac operating system functions differently from the Alt key under other Unix-like systems or Microsoft Windows. Most notably, it is not used to access menus or hotkeys, but is instead used as a modifier for other command codes, and also to provide easier access to various accents and symbols.
The use of the Option key is similar to that of the AltGr key on European keyboards of IBM-compatible PCs, in the sense that it can be used to type additional characters , symbols and diacritical marks. The options available differ depending on the keyboard input locale that the user has selected. For example, in the U. The Option key can also provide access to dead key functionality.
The accent then can be applied to associated letters both lower and uppercase. With this combination pressed the keyboard will now produce a different set or an uppercase version of the previous set in some cases. Notice that holding the shift key as well as the option key while pressing a letter key may create "capital" versions of what results when the same letter key is pressed while the option key but not the shift key is held. For example:. The key is also used to provide for alternative menu items and buttons when pressed down. The iPhoto example is an example of a control whose behavior is governed by a preference which is temporarily inverted by holding down the Option key.