Monthly Archives: April 2016

Chromebook Keyboard Shortcuts

One of the easiest ways to improve the speed in which you complete tasks on your primary device is to learn the various “shortcuts” available on the platform. When working with a keyboard-based device, like a Chromebook, there are many options hidden beneath the surface just waiting to help speed up common tasks.

Unfortunately, many users have to stumble upon these or learn them organically from others around them. Many times, you can find them lightly hiding next to the graphical user interface (GUI) menus you frequent like shown below:

Chromebook Shortcuts

Looking above, you can learn how to Open a New Tab (Ctrl Key + T) or go straight to your downloads folder (Ctrl Key + J).

However, many options don’t have a GUI menu to reference. For example, I know that in Chrome OS, I can drag a window to the left side of my screen and it will dock to the left half of my available screen to help keep my windows tidy. Unfortunately, it requires that I leave the keyboard to complete this function even though I may already be typing in the window I want to dock.  This costs me time and energy in the midst of an all-important blog post when my focus is already easily distracted.

Self Service

So if leaving the keyboard is distracting, how does one learn about keyboard shortcuts without leaving the keyboard? We use a keyboard shortcut!

If you’re on your Chromebook, go ahead and hit the Ctrl, Alt and ? key at the same time. Go on, I’ll wait.

Chromebook Keyboard Viewer

This lovely feature is an interactive shortcut viewer/keyboard map. As you press a modifier key (shift, ctrl, atl, or search) it will display the corresponding keyboard shortcut for the current keys that are depressed.

Using this, you can find out how to left-dock the window as mentioned above is accessible by pressing alt + [.

To exit this menu, just press the esc key.

ChromeOS doesn’t really have per-app shortcut settings like Mac OS or Windows, so remember these are all system-level shortcuts.