Macintosh Key Commands

Starting with the original Macintosh system software, key commands were available to speed up your work in the OS. However, they were not really fine tuned until System 7.x and the introduction of several new commands such as "make alias" (System 7.1.2). Many of the key commands from System 7 or 6 are still used in the latest Mac OS, version 10.1.

So, what are some of the key commands that might be considered useful?

The following is a list of key commands. Keep in mind that these are not all of the key commands, as it would be next to impossible to find and list every single command for every single program available. Most of these commands involve the Finder or Desktop.

Command- N new folder in the Classic OS, new window in OS X, new document in an application

Shift- Command- N new folder in OS X

Command- W close window

Command- M
makes an alias in Classic OS, miniturizes a window in the dock in OS X

Command- L makes an alias in OS X

Command- A selects all text or graphics

Command- C copies text or graphics

Command- V pastes text or graphics

Command- X cut

Command- Z undo

Command- S saves a document in an application

Command- I shows information for a document or application in the Finder of OS X and Classic OS

Command- T adds selected item to favourites.

Command- H hides an application in OS X

Command- J shows view options in OS X (when you have an icon selected in the finder. If you do not have an icon selected it shows view options for the folder you are in or the desktop folder).

Command- F opens Find File or Sherlock. In Systems 6 through 7.5.1, it opens a separate search box which finds files one by one and takes you to them. If the first file found is not the one you wanted, press Command- G to find another file that matches the search criteria you entered.

Command- D duplicate selected item

Command- O open

Command- K connect to server (in OS X)

Command- Q quits an application

Shift- Command- Q logout- OS X and OS 9

Command- E ejects a disk in OS X

Command- Y ejects a disk in the Classic OS (command- E works too, but leaves a shadow on the desktop that you must manually bring to the trash)

Command- Shift- Delete Empties the trash in OS 9.1 and later (including OS X)

Hopefully these key commands will be useful to you. I find that using key commands instead of the mouse lets you do things faster on your computer. I no longer use the "Quit" menu option, or the close window box because I find the key commands to be much easier.

There are several that you should know well. You should know how to copy text, how to paste text, how to save a document, how to quit a program, and how to close a window using the keyboard. Go ahead and start using these commands a bit, see if it doesn't make your computing experience a little easier and faster.