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10 Useful Mac Keyboard Shortcuts Most People Don't Know

Tuesday April 30, 2019. 03:00 PM , from MacMost
When looking for useful Mac keyboard shortcuts you'll come across the same ones over and over. Here are 10 that haven't gotten as much attention, but can seriously increase your productivity. Learn how to quickly switch between windows, get typing suggestions, access app preferences and menu items, rename files and more.


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Video Transcript: Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. In this episode let's take a look at ten keyboard shortcuts that are very useful but most Mac users don't know them.
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So there's plenty of advice, posts, videos, and lists about common keyboard shortcuts on the Mac. You may already know the most useful, most common ones. However there are some more obscure ones that can be extremely useful once you know them.
One of the most useful keyboard shortcuts is, of course, Command Tab to switch between apps. But what if you don't want to switch between apps but between windows in the app that you're currently using. For instance here in Pages I've got three windows and I can't even see them all at the same time. As a matter of fact this one obscures the others. I can easily use a keyboard shortcut to jump between those windows. That is Command and the key that's above the Tab key on US keyboards. That has a backwards single quote there or the tilde is above that. So use that key and you can page between all of the open windows in whatever app you're using.
Now if you want to move between tabs you can do that as well. That's Control, instead of Command, and the Tab key. So Command Tab goes between apps but Control Tab goes between tabs in the current window. So I've got three tabs here and I can move between them with Control and Tab.
Now we often need to access the Preferences inside of the app we're using. You don't have to use the Menu Bar for that. There's a keyboard shortcut in almost all apps. To get to Preferences you look under the menu item in the app that you're using, like Finder in this case, and you go to Preferences. Notice that the keyboard shortcut is Command and Comma. So I can use that instead. This will bring up Preferences in almost any app. So, for instance, I can go to Pages and do Command Comma and it brings it up there. I can go into Safari, Command Comma, and it brings it up there.
Also the Help menu is useful to get to especially because of the Search field in there where you can search for menu items. So you can search, for instance, for a command and then actually down arrow to it. There's a keyboard shortcut to actually bring this up but you usually don't see it. That shortcut is Command and then the Shift key and the Slash key. Notice Shift and Slash gives you question mark so it's kind of like doing Command and question mark.
So years ago Apple changed how the file menu worked and got rid of the Save As feature. But it didn't go away. It's still there. You just need to know the keyboard shortcut to get to it. So if I wanted to use Save As here I go to File, and go to Duplicate. But if I hold the Option key down it changes to Save As. But notice that also has a keyboard shortcut. It's Option and then Shift and then Command and then S. So I can use that combination of keys to quickly get to Save As.
There are tons of keyboard commands to help you when you're typing. For instance Option Delete will delete a word instead of the last character. But there are some that are a little more hidden. So if you're ever typing and you're not sure how to spell a word or it's a really long word and you don't want to type it all out you can use Option and Escape. So I can start typing a word and instead of finishing it or maybe I don't even know how to spell it I can do Option Escape and it will bring up all of these suggestions. I can then go through it and pick the one I want and hit Return to finish typing.
So hopefully you already know, just like alternative characters and accent marks and things like that, you can press and hold the key and you get a list of options. However if you need to explore more characters do Control Command Space and it brings up all of the emoji. You can go through it and find different categories. You can go and look for symbols and sorts of things. So you can find almost anything here. Of course the best thing about this is you scroll down and you can search for something and then just select it and type.
While we're talking about typing there's a way to paste but not include the formatting. So if I were to format a bunch of text here, like this, select it copy normal. Just Command C. Then if I want to paste it in, you see regular Command V will paste it in with all the styling, but you can see here if I do Paste and Match Style, the keyboard shortcut is Option Shift Command V and it pastes it in the plain text format that fits in with whatever it is you're doing.
A lot of times you can figure out the keyboard shortcuts by looking at menu items. But sometimes there aren't menu items to look at. For instance when you have a dialogue box. So a common dialogue box would be the Save Dialogue. I'm going to do Command S to save and it brings up this dialogue box. Now suppose I accidentally hit this or I'm not ready to save right now. I can click the Cancel key with the mouse but there's also a keyboard shortcut for this. Actually two. One is just to hit Escape. So you hit the escape key. The other is to use Command Period.
The last one I want to show you is probably the simplest. But it's also the one that I'm surprised that most people just don't know. It's super common for people to ask how do you rename a file on the Mac. You can select the file and eventually you would find File and then Rename and then be able to type the name. However, there's a simple keyboard shortcut for this. Select the file, just click it, and hit Return. As soon as you hit Return you are now able to rename the file. This works for files. It works for folders. It works for anything that you can rename.
There are tons of other shortcuts that people don't know as well. I felt that these stood out because they are actions that we commonly do throughout the day and a lot of people just don't take advantage of those little shortcuts. Learning keyboard shortcuts is one of the primary ways that you can easily increase your daily productivity.
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