[Did You Know] Collection of Some Simple and Easy to Use Tips and Tricks for Windows Explorer

Today in this topic we are going to share some simple and easy to use Windows tips which might be unknown to many Windows users. These tips will help you in accessing hidden features of Windows and at the same time, it'll also save your time in doing various tasks in Windows.

So without wasting time, here we start our "Did You Know" guide:

You can Select an Item in Context Menu by Right-Click on it?

Whenever we right-click on Desktop, file, folder or anywhere else, we use left-click to select an item from the context menu but did you know you can also use right-click to select the item? It'll work the same way.


You can Double-Click on Window Titlebar to Maximize the Window?

We generally click on Maximize button in a window titlebar to maximize the window but did you know you can double-click on the window titlebar to maximize it quickly?


You can Double-Click on Program's Icon in Window Titlebar to Close the Window?

Almost everyone clicks on Close button present in window titlebar to close the window. Some power users use keyboard shortcut "ALT+F4" to close the window but did you know you can double-click on the program's icon shown at the extreme left of the window titlebar to close the window?


You can Press "CTRL" key and Select Multiple Non-Consecutive Items?

Almost all of use know that we can use "CTRL+A" keyboard shortcut to select all items present in a folder. But if you want to select a few non-consecutive items in a folder and not all the items, you can simply press "CTRL" key and click on the desired items to select them.


You can Press "SHIFT" key and Click on "No" Button to Enable "No to All" Choice?

When you perform a copy or move operation on a file or folder in Windows XP and if the destination folder already contains a file or folder with the same name, Windows shows you following message:


If there is only 1 duplicate file, you can click on "No" button but if there are more than 1 duplicate files, you'll need to click on "No" button multiple times.

Did you know you can press "SHIFT" key while clicking on "No" button and Windows will consider it as "No to All" choice and will not ask you for remaining duplicate items.

You can Automatically Resize Columns in Details View by Double-Click on the Separator?

If you use Details view in Windows Explorer or any other program window and want to resize a column to see the whole content of that particular column, you'll drag-n-drop the column handler present in the header but did you know you can automatically resize the column to show full content by simply double-click on the column handler (separator between 2 columns)?


You can Press "CTRL" Key While Drag-n-Drop a File or Folder to Copy it?

When we drag-n-drop a file or folder to another folder in the same drive, Windows moves it to the destination folder. Did you know you can copy it instead of moving it by pressing "CTRL" key while drag-n-drop the file or folder?


You can Press "SHIFT" Key While Drag-n-Drop a File or Folder to Move it?

When we drag-n-drop a file or folder to another folder in different drive, Windows copies it to the destination folder in other drive. Did you know you can move it instead of copying it by pressing "SHIFT" key while drag-n-drop the file or folder?


You can Press "ALT" Key While Drag-n-Drop a File or Folder to Create Shortcut?

Above mentioned both tricks allow you to either move or copy the file or folder but did you know you can create a shortcut of the file or folder in the destination folder instead of moving or copying it by pressing "ALT" key while drag-n-drop the file or folder?


You can Reveal Hidden Secret Options in Context Menu by Pressing "SHIFT" Key?

Windows Vista and 7 contain some secret context menu items which are normally hidden but can be accessed by pressing "SHIFT" key while right-clicking. So just press "SHIFT" key when you right-click on Desktop, file, folder or empty space in Explorer and you'll be able to access some secret options in context menu which are not shown normally.

As you can see in following screenshot, "Open in new process" and "Open command window here" options are enabled in Drive's context menu because we pressed "SHIFT" key while right-clicking on it:


You can Access Classic Context Menu in Windows 7 Superbar by Pressing "SHIFT" key?

When you right-click on a program button in Windows 7 Superbar (Taskbar), the default jumplist is shown but did you know you can press "SHIFT" key while right-clicking on the program button and Windows will show classic context menu instead of new jumplist?


Few More Small Tips-n-Tricks:

  • Press "ALT" key and double-click on a file, folder or drive and it'll open its Properties.
  • You can press "ESC" key to quickly close a dialog box.
  • Press "CTRL" key and double-click on a folder or drive and it'll open it in a new window.
  • Press "SHIFT" key and click on a program button in Taskbar and it'll open a new instance of the same program.

Related AskVG Articles:

That's all for now. We'll keep updating this topic whenever we find a new tip or trick.

Did you enjoy the above mentioned tips? Is there any similar trick which you know and we didn't cover in this topic? Please let us know in your comment...


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Posted in: Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP

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  • Ctrl left click files within the same window lets you select multiple files individually,widows key + e open my computer.I thought i was the only one who knew about the clicking icon thing its been there since XP.Windows key and a number key opens the corresponding pinned icon on the superbar and windows key + r opens run dialog.I wish there was a shortcut to terminate a programs process

  • VG

    I really wonder how did I miss the Ctrl+click trick which I use almost daily. Thanks for reminding, I'll update the topic.

    Regarding WIN+E, etc, I didnt mention them because this topic is not about keyboard shortcuts.

  • also about shift+Lclick on the taskbar programs creates another instance, btw nice trick about the file move, etc. trick, that's the only thing idk about windows, xD

  • Work faster by doing VG tips

    Nice trick
    : )


    Very usefull

  • Ctrl+ "+"(numpad +) will automatically resize the whole columns in detail view.

    anyway, thanks for the "SHIFT key in the superbar" tip.

  • @soldier you can terminate a process! Use command prompt and type "taskkill -im *nameofprocress.exe*", and if you want to force termination, add "/f" to the end.

  • You can also, when using Windows 7 superbar, click the wheel of the mouse to open a new instance of a program

  • this is actually really easy; ive known how to do this already for long time
    no offense but still... GREAT POST VG!!

  • Familiar with a few of these but far away from all:D
    Thanks, when check things up closer Windows never stops surprise.

    Can share one helpful trick but believe many knows it.

    When Select multiple items inside a folder we saw above that CTRL working as a great help and particularly together with Left mouse click for instance. But :) it is also possible make the task rational and faster by only use the mouse with the cursor on screen in mark the items from top to bottom or left to right or vice versa. I've started to use this every time i need to select alot of files in folders quickly.
    If only single files or spread files then better use CTRL when selecting them one after another.

    First check out where the first file is in a group of more than one file....Choose a free space to pick next by (above or under first item or before or after first column of items), Then use the Left mouse button and keep it hold down during the time you move the mouse in select items for make them marked.
    Like it does when working with pictures you going to see a highlighted field will be created on screen with the cursor free of size and everything inside it will be selected.

    Afterwords just release the button and do what you want with the selected files, delete, move them, copy or paste new items in replace them.

  • VG

    ^^ Yeah, thats what I do always. It saves lots of time. :)

    No offense taken. Actually many times people dont pay attention on such small features which are really very useful. This topic was posted to remind these features. :)

  • thnx...:)
    bt i already know all of these..

    1 more..for Windows XP :
    windows XP doesn't have the option "No to all"...while copying more same items in a location.
    to resolve this...simply press alt key nd click on "No" on the dialog box...it will work as "No to all"...:)
    -Vinay Godara

  • wow. I did not know many of them. Thank you so much Vishal for sharing them. I love askvg. :)

  • VG

    ^^ You are welcome.

    @Vinay Godara
    Thanks for reminding the good old trick. I didnt remember it to add as its been long time since I left using XP. Added to main list. Thanks. :)

  • Windows 8.1 restarts when closing cmd promt by clicking close button

  • I think the double-click icon to close window one was a leftover from Windows 3, where there was a window menu button instead and you could double-click to close the window.

  • did you know there is a "hidden" "click to go back" button on the internet?
    1: click on an open space with nothing in it on the internet.

    2: click "Backspace" and it will go to the page you had before the one your on.

    3: enjoy!

  • @ gamer

    Lol, as if no one knew that by now...

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