A list of useful keyboard shortcuts I use in Google Chrome

It never ceases to amaze me when I see people (even programmers) who are not using their keyboards to save them time in any task they’re doing. I’m currently working using my small netbook which I usually try to use without a lot of mouse interactions*, writing this article on my favourite browser, therefore I’m going to list a set of keyboard shortcuts that I use every day while I’m working with Google Chrome.

*I do that when I’m using any of my machines, but my netbook’s touchpad is really annoying, so I had to point that out! :P

The shortcuts I’m listing are for Chrome running under Windows**, but most of them will work fine in other platforms (replacing the equivalent keys when they doesn’t exist), as well as in other browsers.

**Continuing the (completely unrelated) ranting I started in the previous side-note about my netbook, Ubuntu just stopped working a few days ago without any reason (no software update, etc.); this machine is falling apart…

Here they are:

  • ctrl + t ⇢ open a new tab
  • ctrl + n ⇢ open a new window
  • ctrl + w ⇢ close an active tab
  • ctrl + shift + t ⇢ open the last closed tab
  • ctrl + shift + n ⇢ open a new incognito window
  • alt + d ⇢ focus on address bar and select all text present there
  • ctrl + page up or ctrl + page down ⇢ navigate through open tabs
  • ctrl + a number from 1 to 8 ⇢ navigate to open tab 1-8
  • ctrl + + or ctrl + ⇢ zoom in or out
  • ctrl + 0 ⇢ reset zoom to 0%
  • ctrl + d ⇢ add bookmark
  • backspace (while not focused on text) or alt + left arrow ⇢ go back in history
  • shift + backspace or alt + right arrow ⇢ go forward in history
  • F5 or ctrl + r ⇢ reload page
  • ctrl + F5 or shift + F5 ⇢ reload page ignoring cached content

These are the ones I use every single day, but -of course- there are more. You can find them all here.

I’m going throw in here three more shortcuts, which have nothing to do with browser functions, but are extremely useful while working with text (and are present in probably every text editor as well):

  • ctrl + home or ctrl + end ⇢ move to start of end of text, ignoring lines or paragraphs
  • ctrl + left arrow or ctrl + right arrow ⇢ move to beginning of next word
  • ctrl + up arrow or ctrl + down arrow ⇢ move to previous or next paragraph

By the way, if you keep shift pressed along with any of the above three shortcuts, you can make very quick selections in your text.

Finally, I’ll add a mouse-related shortcut, which exists for several years in almost every browser. Fortunately (since it’s a huge time-saver) I see more people using it lately, but they’re never enough! You can open a link in a new tab by clicking the mousewheel (or middle mouse button), as well as close a tab if you click on its title in the same way.

If there is a keyboard shortcut that you can’t live without, feel free to post it in the comments.

Photo by bothmavt