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10 Keyboard Shortcuts Every Chromebook Owner Should Know

Chrome Keyboard

Do You Know These?

So you own a Chromebook — but do you know how to use it like a pro? 

Just like Windows and Mac OS X, Chrome OS supports a variety of keyboard shortcuts. Some of these reveal extra functionality, some simply speed up repetitive tasks.

In the rundown below you’ll find ten shortcuts we think are worth knowing about. If you like what you see do give this article a share!

10. Take a Screenshot on a Chromebook

To take a screenshot of the entire screen press the Ctrl key and the Switcher key at the same time:

chromebook screenshot

Just need a bit of the screen? Pressing the following keyboard combo will allow you to select a section of the screen to snap:

chromebook partial screenshot

9. Open File Manager

Opening the file manager in Chrome OS is easy using a trackpad or mouse (especially if you pin it to the app shelf) but keyboard aficionados aren’t left out: just tap the following pairing.


8. Open Task Manager

Is Chrome suddenly running slow? it could be a rogue extension or webpage sucking up your resources.  Identify the culprit using the task manager.


7. Launch Apps on the Shelf

Applications pinned to the Shelf (the bar at the bottom of the screen in Chrome OS) can be opened using a keyboard shortcut.

The first app in from the left – count the Chrome icon as 0 – is 1, the next 2, and so on until you reach 8.


6. Lock the Screen

If you’re going to leave your computer unattended for a short period (say, whilst you go grab a coffee refill) you may wish to lock your screen to prevent anyone else meddling with your session.

To do this just press the following key combo:

lock chrome os screen

5. Open the Hotdog

Opening the Hotdog menu in Chrome isn’t exactly hard, but if you’ve hooked your device up to a huge monitor it can be a fair ol’ scroll up. Save some time and open it with the following command/


4. Toggle Caps Lock On/Off

Most Chromebooks don’t come with a dedicated Caps Lock key. So how do you turn it on when you need to rant in the internet type in capital letters?

Just hit the following key combo to turn it on, and turn it back off when you’re done.


3. Logout

In a rush to quit your session? Some finger gymnastics will have you out in a snap.


2. Mirror Monitor

If you plan on connecting your Chromebook to an external monitor (or TV) at some point then the ‘Mirror Monitor’ shortcut is a neat one. Rather than add an additional workspace it simply mirrors the Chromebook’s screen.


1. Show Keyboard Shortcut Overlay

It’s a little bit meta, but the ultimate keyboard shortcut is the one that reveals all keyboard shortcuts!


Now read:


  • Graham Brand

    Ctrl-m doesn’t open the file manager any more, it minimises the windows to the desktop. Also, do any Chromebooks have an F4 key, rather than a Full Screen key?

    • Devon Garber

      On my Chromebook you can do the same thing by pressing Search+F4.

      • Paul

        Chromebooks have no F4. No F keys at all, come to that.

    • fuzetsu

      Ctrl-Alt-m should open the file manager.

  • Samuel Horne

    For locking the Chromebook, at least on the Series 5 550, I just have to hold down the POWER button and a nice animation zooms me out of the session, and you can play with how long you hold it down to not quite lock it. Very fancy.

  • Splinky

    Maybe I missed something obvious but if you mirror your screen to a tv, is there a way to close the chromebook screen so I can watch netflix without a distraction? Or is the only choice turning the computer the other way?

    • Joey-Elijah Sneddon

      I’m not sure if it’s arrived in the Stable channel yet, but ‘docked’ mode lets you do just that.

      • Mattia Giorgini

        That mode is in the Dev channel yet

    • Louis Chavez

      You can decrease the brightness of your screen while mirroring to a TV or monitor.

      • Timothy Meade

        On the ARM Chromebook you can actually turn the screen all the way off with the Brightness keys.

  • KentuckyFox

    Is there a Page Up or Down shorcut?

    • fuzetsu

      Alt+up arrow / Alt+down arrow provide that functionality (at least on the Samsung Chromebook).

      • KentuckyFox

        PERFECT! Now I f I could just find a reasonably easy to use Excel editor!

        • Yam Borodetsky

          Google Sheets will get the job done.

    • Devon Grier

      alt+up arrow allows for faster scrolling.

  • Devon

    Very Nice but you forgot the full screen combo which is shift + minimize/maximize button

    • Parma

      Hi – On my Asus C300 the max/min button along the top row just max/mins by pressing it alone (and it still works if you do shift + max/min)

  • chrome newbie

    I wanna get an hp chromebook bit not sure what the difference is between c 050 and c 010
    Can anyone help?

  • shadowguy14

    So helpful thanks!

  • musoleK

    Thanks for the tips!

  • scoon83

    I had no idea it was called the hotdog menu… oh wait, I see why now lol

    • maclifer

      Me too… I just got it too… funny.

    • Ellie

      Hamburger would be a better name for it.

    • blabla

      Or you could just call it the Chrome Menu. Most vegetarians do.

      • X1011

        or the “tofurkey dog menu”

    • Ragin Acehole

      I always called it the girl riding a bicycle.

  • Aidan Cheddar


  • Helder Lopes

    Wow nice info!

  • brynn

    FINALLY A SITE that explains!!!!!!


  • LisIris Bleuet

    Merci ;)

  • Ben

    How can I do extended screen to a TV while at the login screen?

  • Ashish Kumar


  • Scott R Kerr

    I don’t get it, why ‘hotdog’?

    • hot diggity

      Because it looks like a hotdog in a bun? Actually it looks more like a hamburger.

      • X1011

        I’d say it looks more like 3 hot dogs on a grill.

  • Matheus Gonçalves

    CTRL + ALT + ?
    And suddenly, you answered all my questions. Thanks!

  • Luca122131

    Add Ctrl+Space for switching from keybord type!

    Thanks, very useful summary!

  • JPB

    I think the hotdog menu looks more like a Big Mac.

  • LS650

    CTRL + ALT + ?
    The only one you need to remember!

    • Sean


      • LS650

        Because it shows all the other keyboard shortcuts on-screen!

        • Bob


  • walter best

    where is the PC screen

    • Aaron Ingebrigtsen

      Uhm, presumably on or near the PC. :p Seriously, though, chrome://settings/display

  • Diane

    Thanks so much for sharing. You have made my learning curve alot easier

  • Jasmin

    I love the chrome book so much more from learning all the awesome information. Thank you for the help!

  • Mike

    I just got an Acer C720, but, no manual. How do I delete letters or characters since there is no “delete” key?

    • pawelkomarnicki

      alt + backspace :) press ctrl + alt + ? to see all of them :)

  • Danny McVey

    You guys should update your list considering some keyboard shortcut changes in Chrome OS.

  • Ray O’Driscoll

    how to cut/paste/move text, etc

  • Lauren

    copy- ctrl and c paste- ctrl and v

  • Ashly

    what is the thing at the bottom of your chrome called?(ya know, that has some of your apps on it?)
    and how do you add apps to it?

    • Nathan Bookham

      It’s called the shelf. Open the app drawer with the Search key then click and drag an icon to the dock.

  • samantha

    how do u copy and paste?

    • fartbubbler

      right click (two finger tap), and the cut/ copy/ paste options will be there.

    • Xypheras237

      Copy: ctrl + c
      Paste: ctrl + v

      • Aaron Ingebrigtsen

        Or, you know, use the Edit Menu.

  • Kenny Strawn

    #9 is outdated. Ever since Chrome OS was released, Ctrl+M was remapped to “minimize window” from what it was before… and unfortunately hasn’t yet been replaced.

    • Josh

      You can use Shift+Alt+M to open the files manager.

      • Kenny Strawn


        • Tom

          Is there a command to open File Manager anymore?

  • JJ ok

    So I am on a forum which shows up in its own window and I want to open a link but copy and paste only works for the main window, how do I open a link in the forum window??

  • Louisa Hassall

    How do I use the tumblr Alt click to reblog shortcut since it doesnt seem to work just comes up with menu

    • Victor Gutierrez Cuellar

      did you ever find out? does anyone know?

    • a

      you cant. it doesnt work, unfortunately.

  • mayan

    Machine is stuck o the chrome logo….how do I get out of this

    • Barry

      im not sure if this will help but u can force the laptop off by holding the power button down for 10 secs. count them while u hold it. if u get to 15 its not wrking. (or at least my samsung one does).

  • littleloop77

    my daughter’s chromebook is also stuck on “O” chrome logo can’t get out any suggestions?

    • Barry

      im not sure if this will help but u can force the laptop off by holding the power button down for 10 secs. count them while u hold it. if u get to 15 its not wrking. (or at least my samsung one does)

  • sue

    how do I do capital letters please

    • jose

      alt + search button to turn on, and to turn it off do it again , it said it clearly, smh.

  • Amena

    How do I access my screenshots once they have been captured? HELP!

    • Joey-Elijah Sneddon

      They’re stored in your Downloads folder

  • fatima

    i tried alt+search for caps lock, but its not working. any idea why ???

    • Mike

      Go to Settings > Device > Keyboard Settings and change Search to Caps lock or any other option you prefer.

  • Mike Sherman

    How do I lock the scroll bar on my Chromebook?

  • Jonathan Hindolo Kurabu


  • pa1

    what’s that symbol(first)

  • Crysti Caro

    thank you thank you thank you. i love my chromebook and have used it for 6 months. And now I finally know how to do some of the frustrating stuff!!

  • yannick

    How can I send a window to dock left/right rapidly with keyboard ?

    • yannick

      OK, it seems to be a new feature (Window Management/Docking), there’s a request for it through keyboard shortcuts here :, I’ll try to do without it :)

      • X1011

        It seems the shortcuts have been implemented (Alt+[ and Alt+]). I don’t know when they were, but I’m on Chrome OS 35 and they work for me.

  • Rita

    Is there any way to get the date to show up somewhere on the task bar (or a mini calender like the one that pops up in PC when you click on the time)?

    • Adrian

      Try the excellent, configurable extension: Clock for Google Chrome™

    • Gerri Detweiler

      I’d like this too! Design mistake IMO.

  • Rodney Brown

    On my Chromebook (Acer C720), Shift+Alt+M opens the file manager, not Ctrl-Alt-M

    • tuxy

      Same on HP Chromebook Shift+Alt+M

  • Bridgette Martins

    Where is the delete key? And how do you delete your search history?

    • tuxy


      • Bridgette Martins

        Well I have a Samsung chrome and shift + alt + backspace seems to work for me. And to delete you history follow these steps. 1) on the top line thing were the website and taps are there are three lines on top of each other click on those 2) click history 3) click what you want to delete 4) click delete marked items. that is how I do it. There might be easer ways but i like this one

      • Bridgette Martins

        lol nvm those were my questions. i figured it out

      • Gerri Detweiler

        Thank you!!

    • Greeny

      Delete – Alt + Backspace
      History – Ctrl + Shift + Backspace
      Also – In hotdog (Alt + F), More tool, Clear data.

  • Lawrence Sanchez

    how do i delete apps off my acer c720 chromebook?? the videos on youtube doesnt help there any other way that can help me delete unwanted apps??

    • Lacaura

      To delete apps, just put two fingers on the mouse, and click. Then, It gives you an option to delete it or not.

  • marc

    I have an HP Chromebook 11. The instructions for screenshot capture are not working. Do you have to do something different for the HP ?

    • Eric O. Carter

      The CTRL+Windows switcher instructions do work. I just used the keystrokes while creating a usb recover drive for my HP Chromebook 11.

  • Tom

    CTRL+ALT+M doesn’t open File Manager but the other commands work.

    • João Victor Schiavo

      The command now is ALT + SHIFT + M.

  • davelalande

    Is there a keyboard combination to turn the trackpad on and off on an HP 14 or Chromebooks generically?

  • Paulo

    Is there a keyboard combo, using a standard keyboard, to power off a chromebox?

  • Sam Ward

    Great guide. Thanks

  • Kevin

    Easter egg/treat hotkey: Ctrl-Alt-Shift-Refresh

    • Adrian

      Nice :)

  • Peggy Winters-Stevens

    How do you paste?

    • will

      you press ctrl then v

      • yolomoneyswag

        No you press ctrl shift q

  • dean

    how do you put icons on the desktop

    • dan the man

      u dont

      • dan the man

        they r on the bottom of the screen left-click or drag
        them to the bottom of the screen

  • jusnap27

    any news re. skype ?

    • Dan Ban

      You could Skype chat with the Outlook app

      • jusnap27

        i do dan. but i’m really on about the video part of the equation. i must say i’m getting quite fond of hangouts … seems to do as much as skype and just as well. problem is, not enough people use it. skype has almost become a verb !

  • Yash Garg

    Hey Joey. How about a similar guide for those who use standard non-Chrome specific keyboards? I’m sure there are a lot of those who do, including me.

  • Yogesh Mandell

    Don’t forge alt + d, it skips right to the address bar so you don’t have to take the time to select it first

    • RYNO

      And ctrl+l as well :D

  • novak djokovic

    So i am on a forum which has a link to youtube, how do I open that link? In windows its easy…copy and paste but on CB the cpy and paste function only wotrks on the address bar and not on the link within the page on the forum, very frustrating!

    • malaina williams

      highlight the link , then click ctrl c on it go up to the address bar and then paste it

      • novak djokovic

        Hi Malaina and thank you for your reply, I have tried what you say but I cannot get past the highlighting, the ctrl c seems to have no effect.

        Here is an example of what I am trying to do, it is the 3rd post down, see if you can open it up on CB…if you can please let me know where I am going wrong! Once again I thank you.

        • RYNO

          Right click>copy link address works (on a trackpad you can use alt+click or clicking with both fingers on the trackpad to “right click”). After you’ve copied it, go to where you want to paste it and press ctrl+v to paste. Or rightclick>paste works as well. Hope this helps.

  • Java

    Nice post admin, Thanks! Also Visit Cyber Programmers

  • Kathy Dempsey

    how do I activate overtype on an HP Chromebook 14?

  • Jack

    how do you create the trademark symbol on an acer 720?

  • snoop

    how can i have an on-screen keyboard?

  • TW

    How about a trackpad cheat sheet? I gave up and use a mouse since I right click and middle click a lot.

  • Vin

    Is Control+Alt+M (Open File Manage) still valid? I type that sequence and nothing happens.

    • Vin

      It’s Alt+Shift+M ! Joey, update this bit of OMG Chrome!

  • Darrie

    how to pull up desktop page for chrome book on an external monitor?

  • Ed

    how do you use ascii codes on Chromebook to type Spanish diacrtic marks?

  • maheadlioncourt

    The combination for caps lock isn’t working for me.

  • yolomoneyswag

    how do you clear your history ;)