Assigning a Shortcut Key to a Start Menu Item

Written by Barry Dysert (last updated August 31, 2020)

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In an effort to keep your hands on the keyboard as much as possible, you may find it convenient to assign shortcut keys to items in your Start menu. The process is similar to adding a shortcut key to any other item. Follow these steps:

  1. Click on Start to display the Start menu.
  2. If you are using Windows 7, right-click on the option for which you want to create a shortcut. Windows displays a context menu. If you are using Windows 10, right-click on the option for which you want to create a shortcut, click More, then click Open File Location Windows displays the Windows Administrative Tools window for that option. Right-click on the option in the resulting list on the right side of the window to display a context menu.
  3. Choose Properties from the Context menu. Windows displays a Properties dialog box for that menu item.
  4. Make sure the Shortcut tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  5. Figure 1. Assigning a shortcut key to a Start menu item.

  6. Click once within the Shortcut Key box.
  7. Press the letter or number you want to use for your shortcut key. Windows automatically adds "Ctrl+Alt+" to the beginning of the character you press. Thus, you would press D if you wanted your shortcut key to be Ctrl+Alt+D.
  8. Click OK.

The shortcut key should be immediately available. All you need to do is press whatever shortcut key you created.

If you later want to remove the shortcut key, follow the same steps but press the Delete key in step 6.

 This tip (11818) applies to Windows 7 and 10.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 35 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer. He is currently a software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. When not working with Windows or writing Tips, Barry is an amateur writer. His first non-fiction book is titled "A Chronological Commentary of Revelation." ...

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What is three less than 3?

2020-09-08 07:54:44

Ron S MVP

That works for "traditional", "real" applications.
.
What about the "new & improved" Win10 UWP <cr>applets. Things like Weather or the new "Office" tile?


2020-08-31 10:22:22

Bob Ama

Is there a way to see which shortcuts have already been mapped for the computer I'm on? Say, for example, that I share a computer with someone and I want to utilize (and also not overwrite) shortcuts that they've already created, but they're on holiday for the next week and so I can't ask them directly.


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