[WINDOWS] Everyone has their favorite keyboard shortcuts to shave a bit of time off computer tasks. There are probably a handful that you use every day to make your work easier.

We have our favorites too and in this tip we’re looking at both Shift and Ctrl Clicking. Most likely either you:

  1. Haven’t used this shortcut before, it’s new to you. Or
  2. Are already familiar with these keyboard combos… but please keep reading as there are different ways to use them that you may not have tried.

TT745Ctrl+Shift+Click1To summarize what these shortcuts do:

  • Shift + Clicking allows you to select a chunk of text or a list of files in order.
  • Ctrl+ Clicking lets you select/highlight text or files in non-contiguous order.

Working Within DOCUMENTS

Let’s take a look at how useful both of these shortcuts can be in your daily work when you’re in programs like Word, PowerPoint and even Excel.

SHIFT+ Click in Documents 

When you’re inside a document, and you want to highlight a chunk of text to move it, delete it, or maybe add some formatting. To easily select the text you want using the Shift + Click shortcut:

  • Click at the beginning of the text you want to highlight.
  • Hold down the Shift key, move to the end of the text you want to highlight and click.


CONTROL (CTRL) + Click in Documents 

You may want to copy, delete or format chunks of text that are not in order. There are items in between that you don’t want to include. That’s when you use the Ctrl + Click combo.

  • Highlight the first chunk of text you want to include.
  • Then hold down the Ctrl key, and highlight the next block.
  • Continue doing this until you have all of the text you want highlighted.
  • Now you can delete, move, or add formatting to all of the selected text.


Working With FILES

When you are working in your Windows Explorer structure, attaching files in emails, or uploading multiple documents to cloud storage — both Shift and Ctrl + Clicking can come in handy.

For example, we use these shortcuts two different ways when working with files:

  1. When you are viewing your Windows Explorer file structure, you may want to highlight a block of documents that you want to move to a different folder or perhaps delete altogether. You could do this one-by one for each document, but these keyboard shortcuts allow you to streamline the process.
  2. When you are attaching files to an email, or uploading to cloud storage (or a web tool), you can select multiple files that are in order in your file structure — or not.

So here’s the key: When you want to highlight a block of files that are in order, you hold  Shift, then Click, and when you want to include files that are not all in order you hold Ctrl, then Click.

SHIFT + Click in Files 

 In the image below, we clicked on the first file name, held down the Shift key and clicked on the last file we wanted. Now we can drag and drop all of the files to a new location or delete them. Or, if inside an email, we can attach several at once, or upload to a file server in one action.


CONTROL (CTRL) + Click in Files

When you need to select files that are not in order (but are still in the same folder), you use the Ctrl key. In the image below, we clicked on the first file name, held down the Ctrl key and selectively clicked on the individual files we wanted to include – even though they were not in order.



In the next scenario, it shows the use of Ctrl + Click to highlight multiple files to upload to a website (or could be added as an attachment to an email) – that are not listed in order.