Keyboard shortcuts in Windows 2000, NT, XP

Most of the people do not know that there are different ways to launch task manager, or change directories without typing the name, or closing parent windows automatically. In this article I am giving the list of key board short cuts for some of the functions in Windows 2000, NT and XP

Here are some of the keyboard short cuts for some of the functions in Windows 2000, NT and XP.

  • Launching the Task Manager quickly:
    Some times it is very difficult to launch the Task Manager. Most of the people do not know that the Task Manager can actually be launched by different ways.

    First Method:
    Press CTRL + ALT + DELETE and the Task Manager application opens up.

    Second Method:
    Right click on the Windows taskbar and chose 'Task Manager...'

    Third Method:
    Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC and the Task Manager will be launched instantly.

  • Changing Directories without typing the whole name:
    Some times it is very difficult to change the directories when long file names are involved. But there is a simple way to change the directories even though the file names are long.

    To change a directory quickly you can use wildcards, for example, to change to the 'C:\Program Files' directory simply type:

    cd c:\prog*

    Note: This works only in alphabetical order, so if you have two directories named 'c:\dir1' and 'c:\dir2' and you type cd dir*, you will be moved to the 'c:\dir1' directory.

  • Expand and Contract the folders easily:
    It would be a time-consuming process to expand a folder by clicking on the (+) for each and every sub-directory. We can expand and contract all at once with one key stroke.

    While in any application that is based on the explorer interface (e.g. Windows Explorer) simply highlight the parent folder that you want to expand and press '*' (asterix on the keypad) and all the sub folders will expand out, press '-' (minus on the keypad) and they'll all contract back again. This short cut works in Regedit.exe also.

  • Closing Parent Windows Automatically:
    Some times you might have opened lot of windows on your desktop and you see a screen full of explorer windows on the desktop after going through a number of directories. But you can close the current window and all its parent windows in one easy step. Let us see how to do it.

    To close a folder and all its open parent folders, simply press the SHIFT key while clicking on its Close box or alternatively press ALT + SHIFT + F4. That is all, all the parent windows will be closed.

  • Making the columns fit in explorer:
    Do you want to quickly see all the column in explorer without having to resize them individually? Yes it can be done easily. Let us see how to do it.

    You need to Simply press CTRL + + (press the plus button twice on the numeric keypad), this will adjust the column width so you can view the info in each column. This tip may also work with programs based on the Windows explorer interface. You can try it out!

  • Re initialize the Registry without re booting:
    Some of the registry changes require that you have to re boot the computer before they are enabled. But there is a way to re initialize the registry without re booting the PC. Let us see how to do it.

    First of all save your work before attempting this tip!

    Press CTRL + ALT + DELETE, to bring up the Windows task list. Highlight 'Explorer' and click on 'End Task', if the Shutdown screen is shown, click 'Cancel'. After a few seconds an error message will popup, click on 'End Task' and the Windows explorer will be reloaded along with any new registry settings.

    For Windows NT or 2000, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete and select "Task Manager". Choose the "Processes" tab and locate the "explorer.exe" process, highlight it and click "End Process". Select 'File -> New Task', then enter 'explorer' and click OK.

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    Author: Prashant Sultania17 Jun 2010 Member Level: Gold   Points : 1

    Hi Raghav,

    Thanks for giving such an important information on Keyboard short cuts for Windows 2000, NT, XP.

    Thanks & Regards,
    Prashant Sutlania

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