Cycle between applications

by Wayne Maples [Published on 20 April 2004 / Last Updated on 20 April 2004]

This is a productivity tip for Windows NT / W2K / XP. Watch other people work with Windows. Everyone does things differently. How do you handle the situation when you have 5 or 6 or more applications going at once? How do you switch? Some people use task manager:
  • Right click on task bar
  • Select Task Manager
  • Select Applications tab if it is not already selected
  • Double click on the application you want in the foreground
    -- or --
    Click on the application you want in the foreground and click Switch To button
Of course that leaves Task Manager on the Task Bar.

Some people just double click on the application on the Task Bar

The method I prefer is uses Alt-Tab:

  • Hold down Alt key
  • Keeping the Alt key depressed, click the Tab key

This brings up an application window. There will be an icon for each application. Each time you press the If you release the Tab key, the selected application, the box, will move to the next application. Try it. Tab Tab Tab Watch the selection box move. When you release the Alt key, whatever application is selected will pop to the foreground.

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