Windows 10 notifications can be turned off, or they can be set to show on your screen for as little as 5 seconds. If you find this too much, you can set notifications to go straight to the Action Center and not show on the desktop at all or to only show on the desktop and stay out of the Action Center.
These notifications aren’t useless. They serve the same purpose as they would on any other desktop OS, and like any other OS, they can be dismissed manually. You can click the arrow button at the top right of a notification to dismiss it, you can click, hold and drag toward the right to dismiss it, or if you’re on a touch screen device, you can swipe it away.
You can also dismiss Windows 10 notifications with a keyboard shortcut, an incredibly unintuitive one but it does exist.
Dismiss Windows 10 notifications
The trick to this is being able to select the notification, and recognizing that it has been selected. When you see a desktop notification appear, use the following keyboard shortcut to select it.
A white outline appears around the notification to indicate that it has been selected. Once selected, you can dismiss it by tapping the Delete key. This is the equivalent of swiping the notification away. It won’t mark it as a ‘read’ notification and you will be able to view it again in the Action Center.
These notifications have been designed to work more intuitively on a touch screen, there’s no mistaking it. They’re incredibly rigid in terms of customization options and the keyboard shortcut that can dismiss them has to be executed in two steps. It might be possible to execute it with one shortcut but you’d need a script to do the job.
The script itself shouldn’t too hard to write and AutoHotKey will be up to the job. It will need to first select the notification with the Win+Shift+V shortcut, and then after a short delay, execute the Delete key. The script itself will have to be executed with a shortcut to simplify the process.
It’s surprising that Windows 10 has come this far without improving its notifications. It’s not the worst feature on the OS, and it doesn’t break like the Start menu and search used to so perhaps that’s why it has been neglected. A dedicated, universal keyboard shortcut that can dismiss the current notification on the desktop cannot be that hard to implement.