7 super-quick Windows 10 tricks you probably didn't know about

How to make your Windows 10 experience even more convenient in less than 10 seconds.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal Freelance Writer
Sarah is a freelance writer and CNET How To blogger. Her main focus is Windows, but she also covers everything from mobile tech to video games to DIY hardware projects. She likes to press buttons and see what happens, so don't let her near any control panels.
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal
2 min read
Watch this: Windows 10 tricks you probably didn't know about
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You might think you know all the Windows 10 tricks by now, but you're wrong -- partly because Microsoft is continuing to drop new builds (Build 10565 went out to Windows 10 Insiders on Monday), and partly because most of Windows 10's little tricks haven't been publicized.

Here are several ultra-fast tips that you probably didn't know about:

Minimize all windows except the active one

Grab the title bar of the window you want to remain open and move it back and forth quickly (shake it). After a couple of quick shakes, all other windows will minimize, leaving only the window you're shaking open.

Quickly open the properties menu

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In the File Explorer, hold the Alt key and double-click a file, folder, or program shortcut to open that object's Properties menu.

New Windows key keyboard shortcuts

Win key + I opens the new Settings menu, Win key + A launches the new Action center, and Win key + X opens the "secret" Start menu.

Pin the Recycle Bin to the Start menu

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Want your Recycle Bin to be conveniently located in your Start menu? Right-click the desktop icon and click Pin to Start. It will appear on the right side of your Start menu.

Background scrolling

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In Windows 10, you can scroll any window -- even one that's not active (in front of the other windows). It's on by default, but if it's not working, go to Settings > Devices > Mouse & touchpad and toggle Scroll inactive windows when I hover over them to On. Then, simply place your mouse over an inactive window and use your scroll wheel to scroll.

Speed through the Start menu

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In the All apps section of the Start menu, click the numbers or letters above each alphabetical section to open a "speed dial" jump list. Click a letter (or number) to jump to that section of the Start menu.

Control your Taskbar with keyboard shortcuts

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If you've pinned programs on the Taskbar, you can quickly open them with the keyboard shortcut Win key + [Number key] (where the number key corresponds to the position of the program on the Taskbar). To cycle through the programs on your Taskbar (both pinned and open windows), Win key + T does the trick (tap "T" repeatedly to move through the programs).