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  • Topic: Computer keys, Keyboard, Shift key
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  • Published : December 9, 2012
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Using your keyboard

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Using your keyboard
In this article
How the keys are organized
Typing text
Using keyboard shortcuts
Using navigation keys
Using the numeric keypad
Three odd keys
Other keys
Tips for using your keyboard safely
Whether you're writing a letter or calculating numerical data, your keyboard is the main way to enter information into your computer. But did you know you can also use your keyboard to control your computer? Learning just a few simple keyboard commands (instructions to your computer) can help you work more efficiently. This article covers the basics of keyboard operation and gets you started with keyboard commands.

How the keys are organized
The keys on your keyboard can be divided into several groups based on function: Typing (alphanumeric) keys. These keys include the same letter, number, punctuation, and symbol keys found on a traditional typewriter.

Control keys. These keys are used alone or in combination with other keys to perform certain actions. The most frequently used control keys are Ctrl, Alt, the Windows logo key , and Esc. Function keys. The function keys are used to perform specific tasks. They are labeled as F1, F2, F3, and so on, up to F12. The functionality of these keys differs from program to program. Navigation keys. These keys are used for moving around in documents or webpages and editing text. They include the arrow keys, Home, End, Page Up, Page Down, Delete, and Insert. Numeric keypad. The numeric keypad is handy for entering numbers quickly. The keys are grouped together in a block like a conventional calculator or adding machine. The following illustration shows how these keys are arranged on a typical keyboard. Your keyboard layout might be different.

mshelp://Windows/?id=d33de1a1-42db-420c-8579-5299b82ccddd

12/4/2012

Using your keyboard

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How the keys are arranged on a
keyboard

Typing text
Whenever you need to type something in a program, e-mail message, or text box, you'll see a blinking vertical line ( ). That's the cursor, also called the insertion point. It shows where the text that you type will begin. You can move the cursor by clicking in the desired location with the mouse, or by using the navigation keys (see the "Using navigation keys" section of this article). In addition to letters, numerals, punctuation marks, and symbols, the typing keys also include Shift, Caps Lock, Tab, Enter, the Spacebar, and Backspace.

Key
name

How to use it

Press Shift in combination with a letter to type an uppercase letter. Press Shift in combination with another key to type the symbol shown on the upper part of that key. Press Caps Lock once to type all letters as uppercase. Press Caps Lock again to turn this Caps

Lock
function off. Your keyboard might have a light indicating whether Caps Lock is on. Press Tab to move the cursor several spaces forward. You can also press Tab to move to the Tab
next text box on a form.
Press Enter to move the cursor to the beginning of the next line. In a dialog box, press Enter Enter
to select the highlighted button.
Spacebar Press the Spacebar to move the cursor one space forward. Backspace Press Backspace to delete the character before the cursor, or the selected text. Shift

Using keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts are ways to perform actions by using your keyboard. They're called shortcuts because they help you work faster. In fact, almost any action or command you can perform with a mouse can be performed faster using one or more keys on your keyboard. In Help topics, a plus sign (+) between two or more keys indicates that those keys should be pressed in combination. For example, Ctrl+A means to press and hold Ctrl and then press A. Ctrl+Shift+A means to press and hold Ctrl and Shift and then press A.

mshelp://Windows/?id=d33de1a1-42db-420c-8579-5299b82ccddd

12/4/2012

Using your keyboard

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Find program shortcuts
You can...
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