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 What the F-key? (F1 to F12)

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kotelinie
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PostSubject: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Mon Apr 13, 2009 10:56 am

What the F-key? F1 through F4

See that line of keys ranging from F1 to F12 at the top of your keyboard? Wonder what all of 'em do? Yeah, so do I, and that's why today we're going to take a trip down funky f-key lane to discover the fun of Function Keys!

Function keys have many, many uses, some of which are specific to the program that's running at the time. They're mainly used as shortcuts or in conjunction with the CTRL, ALT, and Shift keys, which I'll get more into in another article.

For now, here are the basics of function keys F1 - F4.

F1- Typically pressing this brings up the help file for the program you're currently in. To test this, go ahead and left click on a blank area of your desktop, then press F1. The help file should spring to life, offering it's bounty of knowledge!

F2 - This F-key is used to rename stuff. Click on a file or folder and strike the F2 key; you'll be able to rename it with ease! This is a good one to know if you're zipping through a bunch of files you're archiving and you have a specific naming convention in mind. Click the file, press F2 and rename it! - wash, rinse, repeat!

F3 - Used to bring up the search function in Windows, but varies for other programs. Great for Internet Explorer and Firefox users who want to find a specific word or phrase on a web page with ease!

F4 - In Internet Explorer the F4 key opens the address bar. Even though I said I wouldn't be mentioning any extra key commands until later, I must mention that pressing ALT + F4 will close any active program. Careful with this one! Smile

~Andrew
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kotelinie
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PostSubject: Re: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:02 am

What the F-key? F5 through F8

In part 2 of "What the F-key?" we'll be covering Function Keys F5 through F8. Some useful ideas here for function keys, folks! Just to recap let's discuss what F-keys are used for:

Function keys have many, many uses, some of which are specific to the program that's running at the time. They're mainly used as shortcuts or in conjunction with the CTRL, ALT, and Shift keys, which I'll cover in a later article.

Continuing on, here are the basics of function keys F5 - F8.

F5 - Refresh key. Use this key to reload a web page or refresh your desktop. This is a good one for both the Internet (good for Ebay bid battles) and apparent computer freezes which you can read about here.

F6 - Cycles the cursor from field to field in the active program. In MS Word you can use this F-key to go to the next pane or frame.

F7 - This F-key is program-specific. Experiment in different programs to see what it can do, but remember to save your work first!

F8 - This key is used to boot Windows in Safe Mode. Read about Safe Mode here.

We're almost done, everyone! Check back for the exciting conclusion of "What the F-key?". Same Worldstart time, same Worldstart channel!

~Andrew
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kotelinie
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PostSubject: Re: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:05 am

What the F-key? F9 through F12

Our semi-final exploration into function keys might surprise some of you out there. There's really not a whole lot of "functionality" at the end of the row, but let's look anyways.

Just to refresh:

Function keys are pretty versatile, but some only have purpose specific to the program that's running at the time. They're mainly used as shortcuts or in conjunction with the CTRL, ALT, and Shift keys. We'll talk about that soon.

For now, here are the basics of function keys F9 - F12.

F9 - Another program-specific function key, I just call it "lazy", though... Well, if you're using MS Word the F9 key will update the selected field, so that's one thing it can do!

F10 - This key is used to access the Menu Bar in programs (File, Edit, View, Etc.). Good for zapping up there if you need to access some of the menu functions.

F11[ - Is used in Internet Explorer to toggle the full screen view, also known as "KIOSK" mode.

F12 - Another "lazy" key, although some individual programs may have functions assigned to it. In MS Word this can be used as the "Save As" command.

And there you have it! I feel pretty functional, personally, but next time around we'll extend the use of the F-keys to include the ALT, CTRL and Shift commands!
Woo! Exciting! Smile

~Andrew
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kotelinie
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PostSubject: Re: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:09 am

What the F-key? F1 through F4 (Extended!)

As promised I'm back with more function keys! This time we'll be talking about extended combinations like ALT, CTRL and Shift, and how they alter each F-key's function. Just to recap, the function keys are the line of "F" keys going across the top of your keyboard going from F1 to F12.
Today we'll be covering F1 through F4.

Note: Do not expect all of these key combinations to work. Some of them may be program specific, or obsolete. If you're slamming the keys and nothing is happening, move on! Smile

F1
Shift + F1 = This reveals the formatting of the current document (MS Word)
ALT + F1 = Go to next field
ALT + Shift + F1 = Go to previous field
CTRL + ALT + F1 = Display Microsoft System Info (Does not appear to work under Windows Vista)
CTRL + Shift + F1 = Change the font (Does not appear to work under Windows Vista)

F2
Shift + F2 = Copy Text
CTRL + F2 = Print preview command (MS Word)
ALT + Shift + F2 = Save command (MS Word)
CTRL + ALT + F2 = Open command (MS Word)

F3
Shift + F3 = Changes text case (MS Word)
CTRL + F3 = Program specific. Experiment with this one, but save your work first!
ALT + F3 = Creates a building block (MS Word)

F4
Shift + F4 = Repeat a find or Go To action (MS Word)
CTRL + F4 = Close the active window (MS Word)
Alt + F4 = Close the active program. If no programs are open you can shut your computer down with this combination!

Not quite as much functionality as I was expecting. Maybe the next set of F-keys will give us something a bit more substantial! Stay tuned!

~Andrew
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kotelinie
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PostSubject: Re: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Tue Apr 14, 2009 3:38 pm

What the F-key? F5 through F8 (Extended)

Welcome back to another exciting edition of “What the F-key?” Today our special guest stars are F5 through F8. Let's give them a warm round of applause! Just to recap, the function keys are the line of “F” keys going across the top of your keyboard going from F1 to F12. As before, we'll be covering the ALT, CTRL and Shift functions of these keys to see what they do.

Note: Do not expect all of these key combinations to work. Some of them may be program specific, or obsolete. If you're slamming the keys and nothing is happening, move on! Smile

F5
Shift + F5 = Move to a previous revision (MS Word)
CTRL + F5 = Unconditional Refresh (Refreshes Internet Explorer from Internet, not cache)
ALT + F5 = Closes the Word Program (although nothing happened for me)
CTRL + F5 = Restore document window size (Apparently not functional)

F6
Shift + F6 = Program specific. Experiment at your own risk, and don't forget to save your work first!
CTRL + F6 = Cycles forwards between open windows within a program
CTRL + Shift + F6 = Cycles backwards between open windows within a program

F7
Shift + F7 = Opens the Thesaurus command in MS Word.
CTRL + F7 = Program specific. Experiment with this one, but save your work first!
CTRL + Shift + F7 = Updates linked information in a Word document.
ALT + F7 = Finds the next misspelling or grammatical error.

F8
Shift + F8 = Shrink current selection (MS Word)
CTRL + F8 = Program specific. In Microsoft Project it resizes the project window.
Alt + F8 = Opens the macro menu (MS Word)

There are many more shortcuts to be had outside of what I've listed here. A lot of programs, like Adobe Photoshop, use combination functions all the time! It's all a matter of experimentation and remembering to save your work first!

~Andrew
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kotelinie
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PostSubject: Re: What the F-key? (F1 to F12)   Wed Apr 15, 2009 3:19 pm

What the F-key? F9 through F12 (Extended)

Our romp through form and function is nearing it's end, and we have but four remaining F-Keys to discuss. The ALT, CTRL and Shift combinations haven't really added a whole lot of usefulness as far as I can tell, but we'd better finish this off with F9 through F12, just to be thorough! Remember: The F-keys are not a curse word, but a row of keys at the top of your keyboard ranging from F1 through F12.
Without any further hesitation a-here-we-go!

Note: Do not expect all of these key combinations to work. Some of them may be program specific, or obsolete. If you're slamming the keys in frustration and nothing is happening, move on! Smile

F9 (Note: These combinations apply to MS Word and other programs)
Shift + F9 = Switch between field code and it's result
CTRL + F9 = Insert and empty field
CTRL + Shift + F9 = Unlink a field
ALT + F9 = Switch between all field codes and their results

F10 (Note: Yet another MS Word situation)
Shift + F10 =Displays the shortcut menu
CTRL + F10 = Maximizes the document window
CTRL + Shift + F10 = Activates the ruler (Non-functional for me)
ALT + F10 = Maximizes the program window

F11
Shift + F11 = Go to previous field (MS Word)
CTRL + F11 = Lock a field
CTRL+ Shift+ F11 = Unlock a field
ALT + F11 = Display Microsoft Visual Basic Code
ALT + SHIFT + F11 = Display Microsoft Visual Studio Code

F12
Shift + F12 = Choose the Save Command (MS Word)
CTRL + F12 = Choose the Open Command
CTRL+ Shift+ F12 = Choose the Print Command

Once again, there are many more shortcuts to be had outside of what I've listed here. A lot of other programs, like Photoshop, use combination functions all the time! It's all a matter of experimentation and remembering to save your work first! I hope you've enjoyed our trip down F-key lane. Rest assured that there are more fun and functional shortcuts and tips from me in the future. Until then, be safe, save often and don't be afraid of your computer!

~Andrew
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