Some Important Mac Keyboard Shortcuts That You Need To Know

If you are a Mac user, you know that OS X provides many options for quick navigating so you can be more efficient with your work. They make a gesture system and of course the old trick: the keyboard shortcut. It can help you work faster, without using the cursor. Many users do not know the keyboard shortcuts and in this article, we will share with you some important Mac keyboard shortcuts that you need to know.

Firstly, if you are switching from the other OS, you will see the difference on the Mac keyboard. You don’t have to worry about the layout of the keyboard of different Apple devices because they are similar on various devices. Here are some keys in using the shortcut keyboard on a Mac. The modifier keys that are used as a combination are:

  1. Command ⌘
  2. Option ⌥
  3. Caps Lock ⇪
  4. Shift ⇧
  5. Control ⌃

Some applications have special shortcuts for faster and more efficient navigating and operating. We are going to discuss some of them.


Some important Mac keyboard shortcuts that you need to know

1. Shutdown

Command ⌘ + Option ⌥ + Control ⌃ + eject

This command can be used to shut down Mac fast, and it is suitable for Macs that still have the eject key on their keyboard. These Apple keyboard shortcuts cannot be used for MacBook Air, MacBook Pro Retina display, and the New MacBook because these MacBook series don’t have the eject key on their keyboard layout.

2. Cut, Copy and Paste Shortcut

Command ⌘ + X for a cut shortcut
Command ⌘ + C for a copy shortcut
Command ⌘ + V for a paste shortcut

I think these 3 shortcuts are the most used shortcuts for Mac users. These shortcuts can only be used for a writing, not for folders or files.

3. Undo

Command ⌘ + Z

Undo can save you when you make a mistake in writing or when you are working on a certain operation. You can use this shortcut for a fast undo and save your work.

4. Spotlight

Command ⌘ + Space bar

Spotlight is a super search engine in Mac that has transformed into your digital assistant on OS Yosemite and El Capitan. If you want to call it fast, just hit this shortcut.

5. Delete files or folders

Command ⌘ + delete

To delete files and folders you can click or highlight the file or folder, and then hit this shortcut.

6. Empty trash without warning

Shift ⇧ + Option ⌥ + Command ⌘ + delete

You can use this shortuct to empty the trash.

7. Cut and paste files and folder

Command ⌘ + C then Option ⌥ + Command ⌘ + V

This is a shortcut for paste. You can use this shortcut to cut the files or folders, and paste them in a new location.

8. Get info

Command ⌘ + I

Sometimes we need the further information of a file or folder. By using this shortcut, you can get the info of the files or folders quickly.

9. Rename folder or file

Click then enter

Just click the file or folder, and then hit the Enter button to rename the files and folders fast.

10. Quick look with files

Click then space bar

To see the file quickly without opening the related application, just click the file, and then click the Space bar.

11. Screenshot

Shift ⇧ + Option ⌥ + Command ⌘ + 3 to screenshot the entire screen
Shift ⇧ + Option ⌥ + Command ⌘ + 4 to screenshot the certain area

For the second method, you can drag the area you want to screenshot. If you want to cancel it, just hit Esc. The screenshot can be found on a desktop.

12. Quit apps

Command ⌘ + Q

If you only hit close the red button on the app window, it won’t actually quit the app. If you want to quit the apps properly, you can use this shortcut.

13. Close app window

Command ⌘ + W

This shortcut will not make you quit the application, but only close the window of the active app.

14. Close all apps window from the same app

Hold Option ⌥,  then click red x button on the app window

If you want to close all windows from the same application, just use this shortcut to save your time.

15. Enter and exit full the screen app

Control ⌃ + Command ⌘ + F

The full-screen app is the feature on OS X Lion or later, and you will love it. Use this shortcut to enter and quit full screen app.


These are some important Mac keyboard shortcuts that you need to know. Hope it can help you to work faster and be more efficient with your Mac.

Read also: How To Use Private Browsing On A Mac

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