Mac Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts can actually accelerate your work and performance. For any professional working on Windows computer or Mac, keyboard shortcuts come handy. Whether he is a designer, a software programmer or a CEO of any organisation, knowledge of shortcut keys helps you expedite process. So here is a list of Mac keyboard shortcuts for your perusal.

On your Mac, you need to press a combination of keys and you can easily perform all those tasks you might have done with mouse. The biggest advantage of using MacBook Pro Keyboard shortcuts is that you don’t need to take your hands off the keyboard to use mouse. This way, you can improve your typing speed, which is highly appreciated for any writer, programmer, or designer. A consummate professional would always like to use Mac keyboard shortcuts.

To use MacBook Air Keyboard shortcuts, you need to press and hold one or modifier keys while pressing the last key of the shortcut. For example, if you wish to use Command-C (to copy something), press and hold Command, and press C, and then release both keys simultaneously.

Mac Keyboard Shortcuts

Shortcut Description
Command-X You can cut the selected item and copy it to Clipboard.
Command-C Copy the selected item to the Clipboard. This also applies for files in the Finder.
Command-V Paste the contents of the Clipboard into the present document or app. This also applies for files in the Finder.
Command-Z This will Undo the previous command. You can then press Command-Shift-Z to Redo, reversing the undo command. In some apps, you can undo and redo multiple commands.
Command-A You can select All items.
Command-F Search items in a document or open a Find window.
Command-G Search Again: Find the next occurrence of the item previously found. To search the previous occurrence, press Command-Shift-G.
Command-H Hide the windows of the front app. To see the front app but hide all other apps, hit Command-Option-H.
Command-M Minimize the front window to the Dock. To minimize all windows of the front app, hit Command-Option-M.
Command-N New: Open a new document or window.
Command-O Open the chosen item, or open a dialog to choose a file to open.
Command-P Print the current document.
Command-S Save the current document.
Command-W Close the front window. To close all windows of the app, hit Command-Option-W.
Command-Q Close the app.
Option-Command-Esc Force Quit: Select an app to force quit. Or hit Command-Shift-Option-Esc and hold for 3 seconds to force just the front app to close.
Command–Space bar Spotlight: Show or hide the Spotlight search field. To perform a Spotlight search from a Finder window, hit Command–Option–Space bar. If you use more than one input sources to type in different languages, these shortcuts change input sources instead of showing Spotlight.
Space bar Quick Look: It shows preview of selected items.
Command-Tab Switch apps: Switch to the next most recently used app from the open apps.
Shift-Command-Tilde (~) Switch windows: Switch to the next most recently used window of the front app.
Shift-Command-3 Screenshot: Take a screenshot of the screen. Learn more screenshot shortcuts.
Command-Comma (,) Preferences: Launch preferences for the front app.

Mac Shortcut Keys for Sleep, Log out, and Shut down

Shortcuts Descriptions
Power button Press to switch on your Mac or wake your Mac from sleep.
Press and hold for 1.5 seconds while your Mac is awake to display a dialog box asking if you want to sleep, restart, or shut down. Don’t want to wait 1.5 seconds? Hit Control–Power button or Control–Media Eject .*
Press and hold for 5 seconds to force your Mac to switch off.
Control–Command–Power button This will force your Mac to restart.*
Control–Shift–Power button or
Control–Shift–Media Eject
This will put your displays to sleep.*
Control–Command–Media Eject Close all apps, then restart the Mac. If any open documents have unsaved changes, you’ll be prompted whether you want to save them.*
Control–Option–Command–Power button or
Control–Option–Command–Media Eject
Close all apps, then turn off your Mac. If any open documents have unsaved changes, you’ll be prompted whether you want to save them.*
Shift-Command-Q Log out of your macOS user account. You’ll be prompted to confirm.
Option-Shift-Command-Q Log out of your macOS user account at once, without being prompted to confirm.

Document Shortcuts on Mac

Shortcuts Descriptions
Command-B Boldface the chosen text, or switch boldfacing on or off.
Command-I Italicize the chosen text, or switch italics on or off.
Command-U Underline the chosen text, or switch underlining on or off.
Command-T Show or hide the Fonts window.
Command-D Select the Desktop folder from within an Open dialog or Save dialog.
Control-Command-D Show or hide the definition of the chosen word.
Shift-Command-Colon (:) This will show the Spelling and Grammar window.
Command-Semicolon (;) This command will find misspelled words in the document.
Option-Delete You can delete the word to the left of the insertion point.
Control-H It will delete the character to the left of the insertion point. Or use Delete.
Control-D Remove the character to the right of the insertion point. Or use Fn-Delete.
Fn-Delete You can forward delete on keyboards that don’t have a Forward Delete key. Or use Control-D.
Control-K This will delete the text between the insertion point and the end of the line or paragraph.
Command-Delete Choose Delete or Don’t Save in a dialog that has a Delete or Don’t Save button.
Fn–Up Arrow Page Up: You can scroll up one page.
Fn–Down Arrow Page Down: You can scroll down one page.
Fn–Left Arrow Home: This will scroll to the beginning of a document.
Fn–Right Arrow End: You can scroll to the end of a document.
Command–Up Arrow Shift the insertion point to the beginning of the document.
Command–Left Arrow Shift the insertion point to the beginning of the current line.
Command–Right Arrow You can shift the insertion point to the end of the current line.
Option–Left Arrow This will shift the insertion point to the beginning of the previous word.
Option–Right Arrow You can move the insertion point to the end of the next word.
Shift–Command–Up Arrow Choose the text between the insertion point and the beginning of the document.
Shift–Command–Down Arrow Choose text between insertion point and the end of the document.
Shift–Command–Left Arrow You can choose the text between the insertion point and the beginning of the current line.
Shift–Command–Right Arrow You can choose the text between the insertion point and the end of the current line.
Shift–Up Arrow This will extend text selection to the nearest character at the same horizontal location on the line above.
Shift–Down Arrow You can extend text selection to the nearest character at the same horizontal location on the line below.
Shift–Left Arrow This command helps you extend text selection one character to the left.
Shift–Right Arrow With this command, you can extend text selection one character to the right.
Option–Shift–Up Arrow You will be able to extend text selection to the beginning of the current paragraph, then to the beginning of the following paragraph if hit again.
Option–Shift–Down Arrow You can extend text selection to the end of the current paragraph, then to the end of the following paragraph if pressed again.
Option–Shift–Left Arrow This command lets you extend text selection to the beginning of the current word, then to the beginning of the following word if pressed again.
Option–Shift–Right Arrow This command will allow you to extend text selection to the end of the current word, then to the end of the following word if pressed again.
Control-A You can move to the beginning of the line or paragraph.
Control-E You can move to the end of a line or paragraph.
Control-F This will move one character forward.
Control-B This will move one character backward.
Control-L It will center the cursor or selection in the visible area.
Control-P You can move up one line.
Control-N You can move down one line.
Control-O This will insert a new line after the insertion point.
Control-T You can swap the character behind the insertion point with the character in front of the insertion point.
Command–Left Curly Bracket ({) Left align.
Command–Right Curly Bracket (}) Right align.
Shift–Command–Vertical bar (|) Center align.
Option-Command-F You can go to the search field.
Option-Command-T This will show or hide a toolbar in the app.
Option-Command-C Option-Command-C
Option-Command-V Option-Command-V
Option-Shift-Command-V Paste and Match Style: This will apply the style of the surrounding content to the item pasted within that content.
Option-Command-I You can show or hide the inspector window.
Shift-Command-P Page setup: You can show a window for selecting document settings.
Shift-Command-S Show the Save As dialog, or duplicate the current document.
Shift–Command–
Minus sign (-)
You can decrease the size of the selected item.
Shift–Command–
Plus sign (+)
You can increase the size of the selected item. Command–Equal sign (=) performs the same function.
Shift–Command–
Question mark (?)
You can launch the Help menu.

Finder Shortcuts on Mac

Shortcuts Descriptions
Command-D You can duplicate the chosen files.
Command-E You will be able to eject the chosen disk or volume.
Command-F This will initiate a Spotlight search in the Finder window.
Command-I Display the Get Info window for a chosen file.
Shift-Command-C Launch the Computer window.
Shift-Command-D You can launch the desktop folder.
Shift-Command-F This will launch the All My Files window.
Shift-Command-G You can launch a Go to Folder window.
Shift-Command-H Launch the Home folder of the current macOS user account.
Shift-Command-I You can launch iCloud Drive.
Shift-Command-K This will open the Network window.
Option-Command-L This can open the Downloads folder.
Shift-Command-O You can open the Documents folder.
Shift-Command-R This will launch the AirDrop window.
Shift-Command-T You can add chosen Finder item to the Dock (OS X Mountain Lion or earlier)
Control-Shift-Command-T This will add chosen Finder item to the Dock (OS X Mavericks or later)
Shift-Command-U Launch the Utilities folder.
Option-Command-D You can display or hide the Dock. This often works even when you’re not in the Finder.
Control-Command-T Add the chosen item to the sidebar (OS X Mavericks or later).
Option-Command-P You can hide or display the path bar in Finder windows.
Option-Command-S This will hide or show the Sidebar in Finder windows.
Command–Slash (/) You can hide or show the status bar in Finder windows.
Command-J This will show View Options.
Command-K Launch the Connect to Server window.
Command-L Create an alias of the selected item.
Command-N Launch a new Finder window.
Shift-Command-N You can create a new folder.
Option-Command-N You can create a new Smart Folder.
Command-R This will show the original file for the selected alias.
Command-T You can display or hide the tab bar when a single tab is open in the current Finder window.
Shift-Command-T You can show or hide a Finder tab.
Option-Command-T This will show or hide the toolbar when a single tab is open in the current Finder window.
Option-Command-V Move: You can move the files in the Clipboard from their original location to the current location.
Option-Command-Y You can see a Quick Look slideshow of the chosen files.
Command-Y Use Quick Look to preview the chosen files.
Command-1 You can see the items in the Finder window as icons.
Command-2 You can see the items in a Finder window as a list.
Command-3 This will show the items in a Finder window in columns.
Command-4 This will show the items in a Finder window with Cover Flow.
Command–Left Bracket ([) You can go to the previous folder.
Command–Right Bracket (]) You can go to the next folder.
Command–Up Arrow Launch the folder that has the current folder.
Command–Control–Up Arrow Launch the folder that has the current folder in a new window.
Command–Down Arrow You can launch the selected item.
Command–Mission Control This will show the desktop. This works even when you’re not in the Finder.
Command–Brightness Up You can turn Target Display Mode ON/OFF.
Command–Brightness Down You can turn display mirroring ON/OFF when your Mac is connected to more than one display.
Right Arrow Launch the chosen folder. This works only when in list view.
Left Arrow Close the chosen folder. This works only when in list view.
Option–double-click Launch a folder in a separate window and close the present window.
Command–double-click You can launch a folder in a separate tab or window.
Command-Delete This will send the selected item to the Trash.
Shift-Command-Delete This will empty the Trash.
Option-Shift-Command-Delete You can remove the Trash without confirmation dialog.
Command-Y Quick Look will preview the files.
Option–Brightness Up It will open Displays preferences. This works with either Brightness key.
Option–Mission Control This will open Mission Control preferences.
Option–Volume Up This can open Sound preferences. This works with any of the volume keys.
Command key while dragging You can move the dragged item to another volume or location. The pointer changes while you drag the item.
Option key while dragging You will be able to copy the dragged item. The pointer will change when you drag the item.
Option-Command while dragging You can create an alias of the dragged item. The pointer will change when you drag the item.
Option-click a disclosure triangle You can launch all folders within the selected folder. This works only when in list view.
Command-click a window title You can view the folders that have the current folder.

It is difficult to remember this long list of Apple keyboard shortcuts, and therefore, you can keep this link open while you are using your MacBook. Slowly and gradually, you will be able to remember frequently used MacBook keyboard shortcuts.

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