Saturday, January 20, 2007

Windows Vista Quick Launch Keyboard Shortcuts

Grabbed this tidbit over at Lifehacker today - Windows Vista Tip: Built-in Quick Launch Keyboard Shortcuts

If you store your favorite application icons in the quick launch bar in Windows, Vista has created a keyboard shortcut for each one of them: The Windows key + the number of the icon as listed in your quick launch bar.

For example, the first icon in my quick launch is Firefox, so Win+1 would open Firefox. Win+2 would open the second icon (Photoshop, in my case), etc.


I also learned that Win+Tab opens up a neat sort of 3D application switcher - kind of like Alt-Tab on steroids. And the shortcut I recently learned but haven't gotten in the habit of using yet... Win+D to minimize all apps and show the desktop.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Windows "Show Desktop" Quick Launch button

One of my most frequently used icons in Windows is the Show Desktop icon in the Quick Launch area of my taskbar. You see, I keep my desktop clear and store all of my frequently used application icons in the taskbar along the bottom of the page. I'm accustomed to having immediate access to a clear desktop by clicking the Show Desktop icon down there. This is particularly handy when I've got multiple programs open and need to quickly minimize them all. (I supposed I could use the keyboard shortcut Win-M to minimize, or Win-D to show the desktop, but if I'm on the mouse, I'd like to have a mouse option as well!)

If you accidentally delete your Show Desktop icon, or (in my case) Vista doesn't seem to display it by default, here's how you can get it back. This works in both XP and Vista (Business edition, anyway):

1. Create a plain text file called "Show Desktop.scf" and paste the following text into the file:
2. Drag that text file down into the Quick Launch area of your taskbar. (If the Quick Launch area isn't available, right-click on an open space on your taskbar and choose Toolbars - Quick Launch).

Voila. Show Desktop icon appears. If only the icon wasn't so ugly in Vista. They don't seem to have updated it since XP.