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Windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts [With Screenshots]

The new Windows 8 operating system was recently launched with a number of new enhancements. Other than the Metro based interface and other changes, it also came with a slew of new keyboard shortcuts. In this post we will show a number of Windows 8 hotkeys which can help you use Windows 8 more conveniently. These include keyboard shortcuts which are applicable on both the Metro interface and Windows desktop.

Important Update: We compiled this list of shortcuts when Windows 8 Developer Build was released, and since then Microsoft has made some major User Interface changes, therefore some hotkeys may not respond in Windows 8 Consumer Preview and next iterations. We’ve covered 30 most useful hotkeys for Windows 8 Consumer Preview, which you can check out here.

WIN + Z – This hotkey flips open application options. The below screenshot demonstrates how it displayed the Login option for Tweet@rama application.

Win Z

Win + Spacebar – Change the language / keyboard layout. This can be useful for toggling between different language layout for your keyboard (e.g. French and English).


Win + Y – Switches to desktop view. Using this hotkey you can temporarily hide all maximized windows to see the desktop.

Win Y

WIN + Q – Opens Search Apps menu.

WIN + W – Opens search for Settings menu.

WIN + F – Opens search for Files menu.


WIN + O – Disable screen rotation (allows turning off the Gyro reaction to the tablets)

WIN + C – Open Start Menu.

Win C

WIN + I – Opens Start Menu Settings.

WIN + K – Opens Start Menu Connections.

Win I

WIN + V – Allows switching between notifications.

WIN + Shift + V – Allows Reverse switching between notifications

WIN + Enter – Runs Utilities Narrator, which reads aloud the titles and contents of the open windows.


WIN + Page Up – Moves the Metro tiles to the left.

WIN + Page Down – Moves the Metro tiles to the right.

Win Page up and Down

WIN + Shift + Plus(+) – Open magnifier for maximizing the desktop.

Win + Shift + Minus(-) – Opens magnifier for minimizing the window.

Win Plus and minus

Old hotkeys are also functional in Windows 8 for example, WIN+D activates desktop, WIN+R opens “Run”, WIN+L locks the computer screen, etc.

Old Options

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  • pooya

    thnx for quick tips!
    but i’ve a problem.
    when i open fullscreen apps(like control panel)im not possible to close theme directly!(so i ve to keep theme open or use taskmngr to close app.)
    do u know a way to do closing full screen apps faster?

    • Craxo

      Got the same problem, help plz 🙂

  • Griffin

    Some of these are nonsense. Win+Y for that? That should be Win+Space. Win+Scroll should flip between apps (up and down). Win+W should close the window, and Win+Q should quit the application. I don’t care what they set it as default, but I hope they let US change them easily this time around. Why is it so hard to let us do that without third party applications?

  • Tnx dude 4 ur list

  • Vikas J2008

    how to close open window in windows 8
    without con+alt+del

    • fear.-

      ALT + F4

    • Arsum

      or you could move your mouse to the top until hand cursor appears, then drag down the app to the bottom of the screen

  • Ibraheem Osama

    Thanks 🙂 but some hotkeys doesn’t work