As I never remember how to use all the facilities on the keyboard, I decided to place this information into a format that I can print out. As this is virtually “common knowledge” I trust that it is all right for others to make copies if they wish from this.
Mac Keyboard Shortcuts <http://www.danrodney.com/mac/>
I like to figure out the fastest way to do things. I hope these shortcuts will help you become the power user that lies within. These keystrokes should work on Mac OS 10.6 Snow Leopard and 10.5 Leopard (many also work on 10.4 Tiger). I add new shortcuts as I find them, so check back!
Please note that Cmd is short for the Command key (otherwise called the Apple key).
Guide to the Mac’s Menu Symbols
|Key on Keyboard||
|Key on Keyboard|
||Command/Apple key (like Control on a PC)||
||Option (like Alt on a PC)||
||Control (Control-click = Right-click)||
||Enter (on Number Pad)||
|Open Sidebar item in a new window||Cmd-Click it|
|Switch Finder views (Icon, List, Column, Cover Flow)||Cmd-1, Cmd-2, Cmd-3, Cmd-4|
|In List view, expand a folder||Right Arrow|
|In List view, collapse a folder||Left Arrow|
|Rename the selected file/folder||Press Return (or Enter)|
|Go into selected folder or open the selected file||Cmd-Down Arrow|
|Go to parent folder||Cmd-Up Arrow|
|Go Back||Cmd-[ (that’s left square bracket)|
|Go Forward||Cmd-] (that’s right square bracket)|
|Select the next icon in Icon and List views||Tab (Shift-Tab reverses direction)|
|Alternate columns in Column View||Tab (Shift-Tab reverses direction)|
|Instantly show long file name (for names condensed with a “…”)||Hold Option while mousing over long filenames|
|Resize current column to fit the longest file name||Double-Click column resize widget|
|Resize all columns to fit their longest file names||Option Double-Click resize widget|
|Copy and Paste files||Cmd-C, then Cmd-V|
|Move a file instead of copying. (Copies the file to the destination and removes it from the original disk.)||Cmd-Drag file to disk|
|Move selected files to the Trash||Cmd-Delete|
|Empty the Trash (with warning)||Cmd-Shift-Delete|
|Empty the Trash (without warning)||Cmd-Opt-Shift-Delete|
|Cancel a drag-n-drop action while in the midst of dragging||Esc|
|Show Inspector (a single, live refreshing Info window)||Cmd-Opt-I|
|Undo the last action (such as rename file, copy file, etc.)||Cmd-Z|
|Hide/Show Sidebar (on the left)||Cmd-Opt-T|
|Move or Remove item in toolbar (at the top of the window).
This works in most programs.
|Open Quick Look (Mac OS 10.5)||With file selected, tap Spacebar (or Cmd-Y)|
|Zoom In/Out on a Quick Look Preview||Cmd-Plus(+) or Cmd-Minus(-)|
|Find by File Name (Mac OS 10.5)||Cmd-Shift-F|
|Quickly switch between 2 programs
(such as: InDesign & Photoshop)
|Press Cmd-Tab to switch to the last used program.
Press Cmd-Tab again to switch back.
NOTE: Press keys quickly and do NOT hold them down.
|Switch between programs (but you choose which program to switch to)||Press Cmd-Tab and continue holding Cmd.
While holding Cmd, to choose which program you want to switch to you can:
• press Tab (several times if needed) to scroll right
• press Shift-Tab or tilde(~) to scroll left
• use the left/right arrow keys
• aim with the mouse
• use end/home keys to just to first/last item
|Quit a program using the application switcher||When in the app switcher you’re already holding Cmd.
Once the program is selected hit Q to quit.
|Hide a program using the application switcher||When in the app switcher you’re already holding Cmd.
Once the program is selected hit H to hide.
|Cancel out of the application switcher once it’s open||When in the app switcher you’re already holding Cmd.
Hit Esc or period(.)
|Hide all other applications (except the one you’re clicking on)||Command-Option click an App’s icon in Dock|
|Reveal a Dock item’s location in the Finder||Command Click on the icon in the Dock|
|Move and a Dock item to somewhere else on the hard drive||Command Drag the icon from the Dock to new destination|
|Force a file to open in a specific program||While dragging the file onto an app’s icon in the Dock, hold Command-Option|
|When in an app’s Dock menu, change the Quit to Force Quit||Hold Option while in Dock menu|
|Force the Dock to only resize to non-interpolated icon sizes||Hold Option while dragging Dock separator|
|Move Dock to left, bottom, right side of screen||Hold Shift and drag Dock divider|
|Temporarily turn magnification on (or off) It’s a toggle.||Hold Control-Shift (Mac OS 10.5 and later)|
Working with Windows
|Switch windows (works in most programs)||Next window: Cmd-tilde(~)
Previous Window: Cmd-Shift-tilde(~)
|See where the File/Folder is located (a menu will pop-up displaying the folder hierarchy). This works in “most” programs as well as the Finder.||Cmd-Click on name of the window in its titlebar|
|Move a window in the background without switching to it.
(Example: You’re in a dialog and can’t move a window in the background, so Cmd-Drag its titlebar.)
|Cmd-Drag on a window’s titlebar|
|Take picture of the entire screen||Cmd-Shift-3|
|Take picture of a selected area||Cmd-Shift-4 and Drag over desired area
New in Mac OS 10.5: While dragging:
– Hold Spacebar to move selected area.
– Hold Shift to change size in one direction only (horizontal or vertical)
– Hold Option for center-based resizing.
|Take picture of a specific window/object||Cmd-Shift-4, then press Spacebar, then Click on the window/object|
|Copy the screenshot to the clipboard instead of making a file||Hold Control with the above keystrokes|
|Screenshots are saved to the Desktop as PNG file in OS 10.4 and later (or a PDF file in OS 10.3 and prior).|
|Eject CD on boot||Hold Mouse button down immediately after powering on|
|OS X Safe boot||Hold Shift during startup|
|Start up in FireWire Target Disk mode||Hold T during startup|
|Startup from a CD||Hold C during startup|
|Bypass primary startup volume and seek a different startup volume (CD, etc.)||Hold Cmd-Opt-Shift-Delete during startup|
|Choose Startup disk before booting||Hold Option during startup|
|Start up in Verbose mode||Hold Cmd-V during startup|
|Start up in Single-User mode (command line)||Hold Cmd-S during startup|
|Force OS X startup||Hold X during startup|
|Shutdown immediately (no confirmation)||Cmd-Opt-Ctrl-Eject|
|Sleep immediately (no confirmation)||Cmd-Opt-Eject|
|Restart, Sleep, Shutdown dialog (like hitting the Power button on old Mac keyboards)||Ctrl-Eject|
|Put display to sleep||Ctrl-Shift-Eject|
|Open/Close Widget Dock||Cmd-Plus(+)|
|Cycle to next/previous “page” of widgets in widget dock||Cmd-Right/Left Arrow|
|Close a widget without having to open the widget dock||Hold Option and hover over widget (close box will appear)|
|Reload/Refresh a widget||Cmd-R|
Spaces Mac OS 10.5 and 10.6
|Activate Spaces (birds-eye view of all spaces)||F8|
|Consolidate all windows into a Single Workspace||After pressing F8, press C to consolidate (press C again to restore)|
|Move to a neighboring space||Ctrl-arrow key (left, right, up or down)|
|Move to a specific space||Ctrl-number of the space (1, 2, 3, etc.)|
|Move all windows of an app to another space||Cmd-Drag in Space’s birds-eye view (Control and Shift also work)|
|Open Spotlight Menu||Cmd-Space|
|Open Spotlight Window||Cmd-Option-Space|
|In Spotlight menu: Launch Top Hit||Return (In Mac OS 10.4 it’s Cmd-Return)|
|Reveal the selected item in the Finder||In Spotlight Menu: Cmd-click item or press Cmd-Return
In Spotlight Window: Press Cmd-R
|Skip to first result in each category||Cmd up/down arrow|
|Clear Spotlight’s search field||Esc clears to do another search.
Esc a second time closes the spotlight menu.
Working with Text (some only work in Cocoa apps like Safari, Mail, TextEdit, etc.)
|Go to end of line||Cmd-right arrow|
|Go to beginning of line||Cmd-left arrow|
|Go to end of all the text||Cmd-down arrow|
|Go to beginning of all the text||Cmd-up arrow|
|Go to end of current or next word||Option-right arrow|
|Go to beginning of current or previous word||Option-left arrow|
|NOTE: Add Shift to any of the above keystrokes to make a selection to that point.|
|On Laptops: Delete Text to the right of the cursor (like the Del key on a full keyboard)||Function(fn)-Delete|
|Non-touching (Discontinuous) text selections||Command-drag|
|Select non-linear areas||Option-drag|
|Delete entire word to the left||Opt-Delete|
|Look up word in dictionary||Position mouse over a word and hold Cmd-Ctrl-D|
|Auto completion word||Start typing the word. Press Esc (or F5) to open suggested word list|
Emacs Key Bindings (only work in Cocoa apps like Safari, Mail, TextEdit, iChat, etc.)
|go to start of line (puts cursor at beginning of current line)||Ctrl-A||A = Start of alphabet|
|go to end of line (puts cursor at end of current line)||Ctrl-E||E = End|
|go up one line||Ctrl-P||P = Previous|
|go down one line||Ctrl-N||N = Next|
|go back one character (moves cursor left 1 place)||Ctrl-B||B = Back|
|go forward one character (moves cursor right 1 place)||Ctrl-F||F = Forward|
|delete the character to the right of the cursor||Ctrl-D||D = Delete|
|delete the character to the left of the cursor||Ctrl-H|
|delete to end of the line (or delete the selection)||Ctrl-K||K = Kill rest of line|
|center the current line in the window||Ctrl-L|
|insert line break after the cursor without moving the cursor||Ctrl-O|
|transpose letters (swaps letter on the left and right of cursor)||Ctrl-T||T = Transpose|
|Force Quit (opens list so you can choose application)||Cmd-Opt-Esc|
|Force Quit Frontmost Application (without confirmation)||Hold Cmd-Opt-Shift-Escape for about 4 seconds|
|On Laptops: Scroll (like a mouse’s scroll wheel)
(Works on newer laptops if enabled in System Preferences)
|Slide 2 fingers on the trackpad|
|On Laptops: Right-click (like on a 2 button mouse)
(Works on newer laptops if enabled in System Preferences)
|Place 2 fingers on the trackpad and Click|
|Quickly find any menu item and launch it. (Mac OS 10.5)||1. Press Cmd-? FYI: That’s Cmd-Shift-/
2. In the Help menu Search that opens, start typing a few letters of your desired menu command.
3. Arrow key down to the item you want and press Return to choose it.
|Change system volume without the confirmation beeps||Hold Shift while changing volume|
|Completely smooth scrolling—one pixel at a time.
(Only works in Cocoa apps.)
|Hold Option while dragging scrollbar|
|Open System Preferences:
NOTE: These launch directly into a preference pane.
Two examples are given.
|To open “Sound” Preferences:
Hold Option and press any Sound key
(Mute, Volume Up or Down )
To open “Displays” Preferences:
|Open Front Row||Cmd-Esc|
|Quickly Exit Front Row||Press any F key, like F5. In 10.5 and later, non F keys also work.|
|Customize the toolbar at the top of a window.
Works for toolbars like in Safari, Apple Mail, Preview, Finder, etc. But it doesn’t work in all programs, like Firefox.
|– Rearrange icons:
Hold Cmd and drag the icons around.
– Remove icons:
|Switch Tabs||Next Tab: Ctrl-Tab (or Cmd-Shift-Right Arrow)
Previous Tab: Ctrl-Shift-Tab (or Cmd-Shift-Left Arrow)
|Go to one of the first 9 bookmarks (not folders) in the Bookmarks Toolbar||Cmd-1 through Cmd-9|
|Move between found items (in Safari 3 and later)||Cmd-F, enter your search text and Press:
Return to Move Forward
Shift-Return to Move Backward
|Cancel current Find||Press Escape or Cmd-Period(.)|
|Scroll a webpage by a screenful||Scroll Down: Spacebar or Option-Down Arrow
Scroll Up: Shift-Spacebar or Option-Up Arrow
|Reply to Message||Cmd–R or
Option-Double Click Message
|Go to the next/previous email in a thread even if you haven’t organized by threads||Option-Up/Down Arrow|
|Scroll the listing of emails at the top (not the actual contents of an email)||Ctrl-Page Up/Down|
|Choose the Scroll/Move tool||Cmd-1|
|Choose the Text tool||Cmd-2|
|Choose the Select tool||Cmd-3|
|Zoom in or out||Cmd-Plus(+) or Cmd-Minus(-)|
|Scroll Large Images||Hold Spacebar and drag on the image (like you do in Photoshop)|