Mac os finder keyboard shortcuts

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Mac OSX: Shortcut key to Open Any Application

Read our privacy policy. Scroll down for the next article. Column View: Select first item if no item selected, otherwise select item below. Gallery View: Select last item if no item selected, otherwise select first item on the left. Gallery View: Select first item if no item selected, otherwise select first item on the right.

If you don't already know this, the first thing to learn is that you can get to the Finder very quickly by pressing a couple of keys on your keyboard. Instead of clicking the Finder icon in the Dock, or clicking on a window, just press Command-Tab to bring up the macOS application switcher.

Keep holding the Command key, and press Tab repeatedly to cycle through the apps you see in the bezel that displays on-screen. When you see the Finder icon—or the icon for any app you want to use—release the keys to switch to that app. You can tell whether you're currently in the Finder app by looking in the top-left corner of the screen, to the right of the Apple logo; you'll see "Finder" next to the Apple logo if the Finder app is in the foreground. If you don't currently have a Finder window on screen, first ensure that the Finder is in the foreground, and then you can open a new window by pressing Command-N.


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The macOS Finder offers four different ways for you to view your content. You can switch to one of these views from the Finder's View menu, or you can click on of the View buttons in the Finder's toolbar.

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Keyboard Shortcuts for Finder Windows

Most people stick with just one view, but if you want to change views quickly, you can use keyboard shortcuts that show in the View menu: Command-1 for Icons view, Command-2 for List view, Command-3 for Columns view, and Command-4 for Gallery or Cover Flow, in versions of macOS prior to Mojave. Once you're in a specific view, you can move around using the arrow keys, sometimes in combination with modifiers keys mainly the Command key.

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Here's how this works for the different views. When you're in Icons view, you can quickly move around, enter folders, select files and more, just from the keyboard. Open a folder with some files, and you'll see that none of them are selected. If you press the right-arrow key, or the down-arrow key, the top-left item is selected. To select a different file, just use the arrow keys: you can arrow up or down, right or left, and select any item. To open a file, press Command-down arrow. Or to open a folder, use the same shortcut. Once you're inside a folder, you can move around in the same way, but you can also go back up to the enclosing folder; the one you came from.

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Select all items in the front Finder window or desktop if no window is open. Navigate to the search field in an already-open Spotlight window. Open the folder that contains the current folder in a new window. Open a folder in a separate window, closing the current window. Key or key combination. What it does. Display all bootable volumes Startup Manager. Show or hide the Spotlight search field if multiple languages are installed, may rotate through enabled script systems.

Transpose the character behind the cursor and the character in front of the cursor. Delete the word that is left of the cursor, as well as any spaces or punctuation after the word. Show the Spotlight search results window if multiple languages are installed, may rotate through keyboard layouts and input methods within a script. Move forward to the next most recently-used application in a list of open applications.

How to navigate the macOS Finder from the keyboard | The Mac Security Blog

Move backward through a list of open applications sorted by recent use. Move focus to the next grouping of controls in a dialog or the next table when Tab moves to the next cell. Eject from secondary optical media drive if one is installed.


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Activate the previous open window in the frontmost application. Highlight every item in a document or window, or all characters in a text field.

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Boldface the selected text or toggle boldfaced text on and off. Copy the formatting settings of the selected item and store on the Clipboard. Display the definition of the selected word in the Dictionary application. Display a dialog for choosing a document to open in the frontmost application. Display a dialog for specifying printing parameters Page Setup. Apply the style of one object to the selected object Paste Style. Apply the style of the surrounding text to the inserted object Paste and Match Style.

Apply formatting settings to the selected object Paste Ruler Command. Undo previous command some applications allow for multiple Undos.