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What If You Lost Your Mouse?

By Paul Vaccarelli

The computer tool we take most for granted is the mouse. Whether you are a Mac or PC user, the mouse is an integral part of your computer interface. In fact, we rely on it so much we sometimes abandon the keyboard and use the mouse even it is more efficient not to do so. For example, we have all logged on to our email by keying in our user name, then reached for the mouse, clicked on the password field, then keyed in our password. A much faster way is to key in your user name, press the TAB key, which will put the curser on the password field, then key in the password.

Here are a few more short cuts that might come in handy:

  • If you are finished with a program, such as MS Word or Excel, rather than reach for the mouse and click on the X in the upper right of the screen, simply press the ALT key and, while holding it down, press the F4 key (denoted by ALT + F4.)
  • If your mouse fails and you want to shut down, don’t power off the computer. Press CNTRL + ESC. Then use the up, down, left and right arrows to move the curser to the Turn Off Computer button. An even quicker way is to press the key with the Windows logo on it. It is in the lower left of the keyboard.
  • If you have a number of programs and folders minimized and you need to alternate between them, instead of reaching for the mouse and clicking on them, you can press ALT + TAB. While holding the ALT key down, keep pressing the TAB key until you come to the program you need, and let go.

You can find more of these useful shortcuts by Googling “Keyboard shortcuts for Windows.”

Paul Vaccarelli is general manager of PC-911, LLC. He can be reached at 303 807 2911. Phone consultations for computer service  problems are free.