If you have a Windows computer at home, whether it’s a laptop or a desktop, you’ll have noticed that there are a number of keys on your keyboard from F1 to F12. These keys, known as function keys, are not usually used much by users because many do not know how to use them, but they can be quite useful.
Function keys are a quick access for certain functions in Windows, which browser or program is used. They are configured for each “software”, although in some cases can be modified to make them more personalized as needed.
Discover how to use the function keys F1 to F12 to be much more efficient and fast with your computer during the working day:
F1: the first function key is used to open a help tab for the current Windows program or menu. In cases of the operating system, such as in file browser, a tab opens in the default browser that shows search for Internet help.
F2: Use this button as a shortcut when renaming a file or folder on your computer. Instead of right-clicking and choosing the “Rename” option, just select the file and press F2 to do the same.
F3: Once you are in Windows menu, press the F3 key to open the search option. It’s especially useful in file explorer or control panel when something can’t be found.
F4: This key is a shortcut to open any menu’s address bar. The address bar can be used to type the path to a folder (e.g. D:Documents\My stuff) and then go directly to that folder by pressing ‘Enter’.
Using the combination ALT + F4 you close the program currently open on screen. The reason we name this is because in terms of efficiency is one of the most used shortcuts.
F5: The fifth function key is used to refresh a file view in a folder. In this way, if any changes have been made and the display varies, simply press F5 to bring it up to date.
F6: is used to navigate between the different menus of any program that is opened and of Windows itself. In this way, it acts as a kind of “tabulator”; every time you press F6 you reach a new section or menu. Very useful for those who navigate the interface with the help of the keyboard.
In a browser it is used to go to the address bar so you can write a new one, do a search or paste whatever you have prepared.
F7: If you are busy typing in a Word document, click F7 to run a spell check. Press Shift+F7 to open a thesaurus on a highlighted word. If you’re using Firefox, this key will activate Caret browsing.
F8: this is one of the most important keys from a purely IT point of view. When you turn your computer on, just before the Windows logo is displayed, it serves to access the fail-safe system mode or “safe mode” to fix problems with the PC software.
F9: The F9 key will send an email in Outlook, open a measurement toolbar in Quark 5.0 and reduce the screen brightness in some laptops. On OS 10.3, the F9 key is used to display thumbnail images of workspaces. Click Fn+ F9 to open Mission Control in Mac OS X.
F10: This key can be used to navigate through a menu of any active program; pressing it accesses the main menu bar. In the case of the Windows file explorer, pressing F10 displays a series of letters on the screen; depending on where you want to access, you just need to execute the corresponding key as shown in the screen.
F11: It is used to display any open folder in full screen mode. In the case of browsers, tapping F11 also serves to execute this function and exit from it in the running tab.
F12: Although this function does not explicitly work for Windows, it is worth knowing that it opens the console of any of the most popular browsers to access developer options.