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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


  1. 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?

  2. 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?

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