A modifier key is a part of many key combinations. A modifier key alters the way other keystrokes or mouse clicks are interpreted by Mac OS X. Modifier keys include: Command, Control, Option, Shift, Caps Lock, and the fn key (if your keyboard has a fn key).
Here are the modifier key symbols you can see in Mac OS X menus:
(Command key) - On some Apple keyboards, this key also has an Apple logo ()
(Option key) - "Alt" may also appear on this key
(Caps Lock) - Toggles Caps Lock on or off
fn (Function key)
Startup keyboard shortcuts
Press the key or key combination until the expected function occurs/appears (for example, hold Option during startup until Startup Manager appears, or Shift until "Safe Boot" appears). Tip: If a startup function doesn't work and you use a third-party keyboard, connect an Apple keyboard and try again.
Key or key combination What it does
Option Display all bootable volumes (Startup Manager)
Shift Perform Safe Boot (start up in Safe Mode)
C Start from bootable media (DVD, CD, USB thumb drive, and so forth)
T Start in FireWire target disk mode
N Start from NetBoot server
X Force Mac OS X startup (if non-Mac OS X startup volumes are present)
Command-V Start in Verbose Mode
Command-S Start in Single User Mode
See also: Startup key combinations for Intel-based Macs.
Finder keyboard shortcuts
Key combination What it does
Command-A Select all items in the front Finder window (or desktop if no window is open)
Option-Command-A Deselect all items
Shift-Command-A Open the Applications folder
Command-C Copy selected item/text to... [continues]
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