Geeks in Phoenix

Geek Blog

Mastering Windows 11 Shortcuts

Are you tired of hunting for your favorite program, website, or feature in Windows 11? Why not utilize a shortcut to make navigating Windows 11 so much easier? In this article, I will show you how to master shortcuts in Windows 11.

Creating shortcuts in Windows 11 can significantly improve your productivity and efficiency. By allowing you to access your favorite apps and features with just a few keystrokes, whether you are a seasoned Windows user or new to the platform, learning how to create and use shortcuts can streamline your workflow and make navigating Windows 11 a breeze.

In this article, we will explore the various methods for creating and using shortcuts in Windows 11, as well as some valuable tips and tricks to help you get the most out of these powerful features. There are basically four (4) types of shortcuts we are going to look at. They are Desktop, Taskbar, Start menu and Keyboard.

When creating shortcuts, you have to know where the file or app you want to create a shortcut to is located on your computer. You usually will use File Explorer to make most of your shortcuts. You can access the File Explorer by either:

  • Left-clicking on the manilla folder icon (File Explorer) on the Taskbar.
  • Right-click on the Start Windows logo key button and select File Explorer from the Power User menu.
  • Press the Windows logo key Windows logo key + E.

Desktop Shortcuts

Desktop shortcuts are by far the most popular shortcuts. They are easy to create, can link to almost anything, and have the most options. Some of the following procedures require using both left and right mouse buttons and drag-and-drop functions.

Folder and file shortcuts

  1. Open File Explorer and make sure that its window is not maximized and that you can see the Desktop behind it.
  2. Locate any folder or file you would like to create a shortcut on the Desktop.
  3. Click and hold the right mouse button on the folder or file and drag it to the Desktop.
  4. Left-click on Create shortcuts here from
    Create shortcuts here context menu
    the context menu that appears.

By using the right mouse button instead of the left mouse button to create the shortcut, you are guaranteed to get the Create shortcuts here option.

URL shortcuts

Creating a link to a web page is as simple as it is for folders and files. We will use your favorite browser (Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, etc.) to create a Desktop shortcut.

  1. Open your browser, make sure that its window is not maximized, and you can see the Desktop behind it.
  2. Navigate to the web page to which you would like a shortcut.
  3. Click and hold the left mouse button on the
    Web browser address site information
    View site information icon to the left of the web address, then drag it to the Desktop.

Desktop shortcuts also have another cool feature: keyboard shortcuts. These keyboard shortcuts are limited to using the Ctrl + Alt keys along with your choice of a letter (A-Z) or number (0-9). They are handy when you want to open a Desktop shortcut, and your screen is full of open apps.

To set up a keyboard shortcut for a Desktop shortcut:

  1. Right-click on a Desktop shortcut and select Properties.
  2. For shortcuts to folders and files, select the Shortcut tab and scroll down to Shortcut key. For web page shortcuts, select the Web Document tab and scroll down to Shortcut key.
  3. Left-click in the Shortcut key box and press the letter or number you want to use. You will notice that Ctrl + Alt are automatically added.
  4. In the right-hand corner, left-click on Apply. Then click on OK.

To remove a Desktop shortcut, right-click on it and select Delete from the context menu that appears.

Taskbar / Start menu shortcuts

Since the Taskbar and Start menu shortcuts are created similarly, I have grouped them together. There is one difference between them: Taskbar shortcuts can only be to programs, not folders or files. However, creating and deleting them is the same.

  1. Using either Files Explorer or the Start Windows logo key menu, navigate to the program, folder, or file you want a shortcut to.
  2. Right-click on it to bring up the context menu for it.
  3. On the context menu, look for either Pin to Taskbar or Pin to Start. If there is a More options link at the bottom of the context menu, click on it. You should now have all available options shown.
  4. Left-click on the type of shortcut you would like to create.

To remove a Taskbar or Start Windows logo key menu shortcut, right-click on the shortcut and choose Unpin from Taskbar or Unpin from Start.

Keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts are another powerful way to streamline your workflow in Windows 11. Many built-in shortcuts can help you quickly navigate the operating system and perform everyday tasks. For example, pressing Windows logo key Windows logo key + D will minimize all open windows and show the Desktop, while Windows logo key Windows logo key + E will open File Explorer.

There are several categories of Keyboard shortcuts: Windows logo key, accessibility, dialog box, and general. And since I use my right hand for my mouse, I have keyboard shortcuts I use only with my left hand. Here are links to all of the different categories of keyboard shortcuts you can use with Windows 11.

Windows logo key shortcuts for Windows 11

Accessibility keyboard shortcuts

Dialog box keyboard shortcuts

General keyboard shortcuts

My favorite left hand Windows keyboard shortcuts

In conclusion, creating and using shortcuts in Windows 11 is a simple yet powerful way to enhance your computing experience. By taking advantage of Desktop shortcuts, Taskbar shortcuts, Start menu shortcuts, and Keyboard shortcuts, you can easily customize your workflow to suit your individual needs and navigate Windows 11. With some time and effort, you can create a personalized system of shortcuts that will help you work more efficiently and effectively.

Add comment

Free computer diagnostics

Repairing a PC can sometimes be expensive, and that is why we offer free basic in-shop diagnostics. Give one of our professional and experienced technicians a call at (602) 795-1111, and let's see what we can do for you.

Check out our reviews

Geeks In Phoenix LLC, BBB Business Review

Customer service is #1

Here at Geeks in Phoenix, we take pride in providing excellent customer service. We aim to give the highest quality of service  from computer repair, virus removal, and data recovery.

Bring your computer to us and save

Repairing a computer can be time-consuming. That is why we base our in-shop service on the time we work on your computer, not the time it takes for your computer to work! From running memory checking software to scanning for viruses, these are processes that can take some time.

Contact us

If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call at (602) 795-1111  and talk with one of our Geeks. Or you can send us a message from our contact page , and one of our Geeks will get back to you as soon as possible. Or you can stop by and see us. Here are our hours and location.

Like Geeks in Phoenix on Facebook

Follow Geeks in Phoenix on Twitter

Watch Geeks in Phoenix on YouTube