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Gmail keyboard shortcuts


On our quest to become keyboard warriors stands another mighty giant to conquer, Gmail! I have only recently started using these shortcuts myself but some have become invaluable already.

Keyboard shortcuts help you save time by allowing you to never take your hands off the keyboard to use the mouse. You’ll need a Standard 101/102-Key or Natural PS/2 Keyboard to use the shortcuts. These are from Google’s own help pages once again.

To turn these case-sensitive shortcuts on or off, click the gear icon at the top of any Gmail page and then Mail settings.

ShortcutDefinitionAction
cComposeAllows you to compose a new message. + c allows you to compose a message in a new window.
/SearchPuts your cursor in the search box.
kMove to newer conversationOpens or moves your cursor to a more recent conversation. You can hit to expand a conversation.
jMove to older conversationOpens or moves your cursor to the next oldest conversation. You can hit to expand a conversation
nNext MessageMoves your cursor to the next message. You can hit to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
pPrevious messageMoves your cursor to the previous message. You can hit to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
o or EnterOpen.Opens your conversation. Also expands or collapses a message if you are in ‘Conversation View.’
uReturn to conversation listRefreshes your page and returns you to the inbox, or list of conversations.
eArchiveArchive your conversation from any view.
mMuteArchives the conversation, and all future messages skip the Inbox unless sent or cc’d directly to you.
xSelect conversationAutomatically checks and selects a conversation so that you can archive, apply a label, or choose an action from the drop-down menu to apply to that conversation.
sStar a message or conversationAdds or removes a star to a message or conversation. Stars allow you to give a message or conversation a special status.
+Mark as importantHelps Gmail learn what’s important to you by marking misclassified messages. (Specific to Priority Inbox)
Mark as unimportantHelps Gmail learn what’s not important to you by marking misclassified messages. (Specific to Priority Inbox)
!Report spamMarks a message as spam and removes it from your conversation list.
rReplyReplies to the message sender. Shift + r allows you to reply to a message in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
aReply allReplies to all message recipients. Shift +a allows you to reply to all message recipients in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
fForwardForwards a message. Shift + f allows you to forward a message in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
EscEscape from input fieldRemoves the cursor from your current input field.
Ctrl + sSave draftSaves the current text as a draft when composing a message. Hold the Ctrl key while pressing s and make sure your cursor is in one of the text fields — either the composition pane, or any of the To, CC, BCC, or Subject fields — when using this shortcut.
#DeleteMoves the conversation to Trash.
lLabelOpens the Labels menu to label a conversation.
vMove toMoves the conversation from the inbox to a different label, Spam or Trash.
Shift + iMark as readMarks your message as ‘read’ and skip to the next message.
Shift + uMark as unreadMarks your message as ‘unread’ so you can go back to it later.
[Archive and previousRemoves the current view’s label from your conversation and moves to the previous one.
]Archive and nextRemoves the current view’s label from your conversation and moves to the next one.
zUndoUndoes your previous action, if possible (works for actions with an ‘undo’ link).
Shift + nUpdate current conversationUpdates your current conversation when there are new messages.
qMove cursor to chat searchMoves your cursor directly to the chat search box.
yRemove from Current View*Automatically removes the message or conversation from your current view.From ‘Inbox,’ ‘y’ means Archive
From ‘Starred,’ ‘y’ means Unstar
From ‘Trash,’ ‘y’ means Move to inbox
From any label, ‘y’ means Remove the label

* ‘y’ has no effect if you’re in ‘Spam,’ ‘Sent,’ or ‘All Mail.’

.Show more actionsDisplays the ‘More Actions’ drop-down menu.
Ctrl + Down arrowOpens options in ChatCtrl + Down arrow moves from edit field in your chat window to select the ‘Video and more’ menu.Next, press Tab to select the emoticon menu. Press to open the selected menu
?Show keyboard shortcuts helpDisplays the keyboard shortcuts help menu within any page you’re on. (Note: Typing ? will display the help menu even if you don’t have keyboard shortcuts enabled)
kMove up a contactMoves your cursor up in your contact list
jMove down a contactMoves your cursor down in your contact list
o or EnterOpenOpens the contact with the cursor next to it.
jMove down a contactMoves your cursor down in your contact list
uReturn to contact list viewRefreshes your page and returns you to the contact list.
eRemove from Current GroupRemoves selected contacts from the group currently being displayed.
xSelect contactChecks and selects a contact so that you can change group membership or choose an action from the drop-down menu to apply to the contact.
EscEscape from input fieldRemoves the cursor from the current input
eRemove from Current GroupRemoves selected contacts from the group currently being displayed.
#DeleteDeletes a contact permanently
lGroup membershipOpens the groups button to group contacts
zUndoReverses your previous action, if possible (works for actions with an ‘undo’ link)
.Show more actionsOpens the “More actions” drop-down menu.
lGroup membershipOpens the groups button to group contacts

Combo keys

ShortcutDefinitionAction
Tab then EnterSend messageAfter composing your message, use this combination to send it automatically. (Supported in Internet Explorer and Firefox, on Windows.)
y then oArchive and nextArchives your conversation and moves to the next one.
g then aGo to ‘All Mail’Takes you to ‘All Mail,’ the storage site for all mail you’ve ever sent or received (and have not deleted).
g then sGo to ‘Starred’Takes you to all conversations you have starred.
g then cGo to ‘Contacts’Takes you to your Contacts list.
g then cGo to ‘Contacts’Takes you to your Contacts list.
g then dGo to ‘Drafts’Takes you to all drafts you have saved.
g then dGo to ‘Drafts’Takes you to all drafts you have saved.
g then lGo to ‘Label’Takes you to the search box with the “label:” operator filled in for you.
g then iGo to ‘Inbox’Returns you to the inbox.
g then tGo to ‘Sent Mail’Takes you to all mail you’ve sent.
* then aSelect allSelects all mail.
* then nSelect noneDeselects all mail.
* then rSelect readSelects all mail you’ve read.
* then uSelect unreadSelects all unread mail.
* then sSelect starredSelects all starred mail.
* then tSelect unstarredSelects all unstarred mail.

About Schalk Burger

Schalk Burger is a Cape Town web designer and WordPress developer.

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