How to Set Keyboard Shortcuts for Applications in Windows 10?
Why Do you Need to Access Applications Fast?
Efficiency is everything, especially in this modern society. If you use a computer in the workplace, your boss is going to want you to do jobs as fast as you can and to the best of your ability. If you are at home, you’re still going to do some of those menial tasks, like taxes and checking emails, as quickly as possible. Luckily, there are several ways that we can boost productivity on the computer to make your life that much easier.
One of these “efficiency hacks”, if you will, is setting your own keyboard shortcuts for your favorite applications. This removes the need for the long and drawn out process that is minimizing all your programs, and finding, then double clicking the shortcut on the desktop or in some other folder. As you can probably imagine, this would be incredibly useful in any scenario that you’re using the computer. The last thing you want to do when you’re in the middle of a train of thought is close everything down and find another program that you could just open in a second.
Set Keyboard Shortcuts for Applications in Windows 10
Setting your own keyboard shortcut to any application is easy and quick to do in Windows 10. To begin with, let us take an example that you want to set keyboard shortcut to launch WordPad. You need to follow the below two steps:
- Create a desktop shortcut
- Set keyboard shortcut
Creating a Desktop Shortcut
First step is to navigate to the executable file location. In our example WordPad app is located in the path “C:\Program Files\Windows NT\Accessories“. There are three ways to create a desktop shortcut for an app:
- You can drag the “wordpad.exe” application file to the desktop.
- Right click and select “Create shortcut”.
You will be prompted to create a shortcut on desktop as you can’t create a shortcut on the folder. Click ok to proceed.
- Right click and select “Send to > Desktop (create shortcut)”.
Assigning a Keyboard Shortcut
Now that you have created a desktop shortcut, but it still needs to go the desktop and double click on it to launch the app. Right click on the desktop shortcut to view the properties window and navigate to the “Shortcuts” tab.
Here you can see the option to assign a shortcut key for launching the app directly using keyboard. Next, what we will want to do, is click in the box that says “Shortcut Key”. This is where you will need to enter the keyboard shortcut to open the application.
Using Correct Shortcut Keys
When you press “A”, the shortcut key will be set as”Ctrl + Alt + A” by default. You can use shift, function keys and all alphanumeric keys for the shortcut. It should be noted that, depending on your chosen keyboard shortcut, it may overlap and cause problems with an existing keyboard shortcut. This may not be an issue for shortcuts that you don’t use.
Due to this, its imperative that you choose a shortcut that’s unique to you, and won’t destroy any of your other shortcuts that you regularly use. If you can remember it and it doesn’t impede you, then go for gold.
Launching App with Shortcut Key
Once you’ve selected a keyboard shortcut, then press the “Apply” button, followed by the “OK” button. In our example, we have set “Ctrl + Alt + Z” as a shortcut for WordPad. Now pressing “Ctrl + Alt + Z” will launch WordPad without the need of mouse and going back to desktop or searching for the exe file.
Try out the shortcut and see how it feels. Will you be able to easily use it to improve productivity? Is using it faster than just using the shortcut itself? If you feel that you aren’t happy with the shortcut, you can easily go back at any time and change it again, using the same process. Keep going until the keyboard binding feels right and its something you can remember easily.