The Ultimate Guide for switching from a PC to a Mac
(Part 2 - coming soon)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Shortcut for dialog boxes!

When a dialog box pops up in applications such as Safari, the shortcut is usually pretty obvious. "Enter" will be "OK" and "Esc" will be "Cancel". But, it does happen that some dialog boxes don't have the obvious OK and Cancel. One that annoys me in particular is the one to remember my password. I nearly always want to click "Not Now", but there is no obvious way of doing that. Even for that, the Esc shortcut works. In this case, there are three options, so you'll have to try it once to see which option will "Esc" do for different dialog boxes. It didn't make sense to me at first, because I always see Esc as a way of stopping a web page from loading, but it is really useful when you start using it.


Blogger Denver said...

Your post is kind of vague. Another good option is to look at the highlighted and soft highlighted buttons you can choose from. If you push tab, the soft highlighting will rotate through the options, pushing space bar will select the soft highlighted option. The full highlighted one (should be either blue or dark grey) is what will be selected if you push 'enter'.

January 16, 2008 at 9:59 PM  
Blogger lucas said...

also, in some applications (but not all)
you can push "command-D" for "do not save"

at least, that's how it happens in text-edit.
i use it alot

January 17, 2008 at 12:16 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Thanks denver, that was a helpful comment.

January 17, 2008 at 2:53 PM  
Blogger Pirate Pinion said...

What Denver describes is indeed very useful. I discovered it recently, and the good thing is that some dialogue boxes actually have the OK button highlighted and the Cancel button soft highlighted. That way you can inmediately accept (Enter) or cancel (Space), without even having to cycle through the options with your tab!

January 17, 2008 at 10:01 PM  
Blogger jan said...

Often [command] followed by the first letter of the dialog option letter will work.
e.g. [command]+[m] when you want to "Move to trash" a song you've just deleted from iTunes.

January 18, 2008 at 4:20 AM  
Blogger greg said...

I have found that pressing command is redundant, at least for some dialog boxes. When the choices are 'Yes/No,' pressing 'Y' or 'N' (without command) will make your choice. With the 'move to trash' example, simply press 'M' to move the files to the trash.

January 18, 2008 at 11:15 AM  
Blogger said...

Denver, How do you enable soft highlighting? I had it enabled before, but I cannot find it again.

January 22, 2008 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger mardini said...

You enable soft highlighting by pressing ^+fn+F7. Alternatively, you can go to System Preferences | Keyboard & Mouse | Keyboard Shortcuts and select the radio button at the bottom of the dialog box in the "Full Keyboard Access" section.

January 26, 2008 at 3:57 AM  

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