Hidden Windows 11 Features That Will Change How You Use Your PC

Windows 11 began its sporadic rollout last year, and Microsoft has since said its latest operating system is ready for widespread deployment. This means that anyone with a computer that meets the minimum requirements should be able to download and install Windows 11.

whether you Using your computer at work Or your personal life, it’s a good time to master some Windows productivity features. These built-in tricks can help you do everything from setting taskbar shortcuts to saving battery power. Microsoft isn’t usually outspoken about its hidden features in the same way Apple tends to be, which can sometimes make it hard to know how to take advantage of all that Windows has to offer. But we got you covered here with the list of hidden features that you can start using right now to get the most out of Windows 11.


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So no matter which Microsoft, Dell, HP or other Windows compatible rig you have, these clever tips will help you stay organized and get more done. Plus, here’s everything you need to know about Windows 11, the best features in Windows 11 and how it compares to Windows 10

1. Minimize every window except the active one

If your desktop screen has gotten too crowded with open windows, you can quickly minimize them all except the one you are currently working in. You’ll need to turn this on in Windows 11 by heading to Settings, then System, then Multitasking and turning on Title bar window shake

Just click the title bar of the window you want to remain open to select it. Then, hold the mouse down and move the window back and forth quickly — shaking it, essentially. After a couple of quick shakes, all other open windows will minimize, leaving only the one you’ve shaken open. Neat, huh?

2. Open the ‘secret’ Start menu

You know that to get to the Start menu, you hit the Windows icon at the bottom over on the left of the screen or on your keyboard. But Windows 11 includes a lesser-known second Start menu that makes accessing important features like the Command Prompt, the Control Panel and the Task Manager much easier. You can access it two different ways, either by pressing the Windows key + X, or right click the Windows icon/Start button. 

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3. Take a screenshot on Windows 11

I know, it’s a basic one — but it’s amazing how easy it is to forget how to take a screenshot on your laptop or desktop when you don’t do it often. 

There are at least eight different ways you can take a screenshot with Windows. If you want to capture and save a picture of your entire screen, the easiest way is to hit the Windows key + Print Screen key, and that picture will be saved to the Pictures > Screenshots folder. 

Read more: Need a Productivity Boost? Give These Windows 11 Multitasking Features a Try

To capture just one part of your screen, hit the Windows key + Shift + S to open a tool called Snip & Sketch, which allows you to click and drag to create a screenshot, which is saved to your Clipboard.


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4. Open pinned items from your Taskbar with keyboard shortcuts

If you’ve pinned programs to your Taskbar at the bottom of your screen to create a shortcut, you don’t have to click the icons to open them. Instead, use the keyboard shortcut Windows key + [Number key], with the number key corresponding to the position of the pinned program on the taskbar. For example, Windows key + 2 will open the second item pinned to the taskbar.

This is especially useful if you type furiously and don’t want to take your fingers off the keyboard. It may be normal to access the Windows key.

5. Find out how much space apps take up space

Computers start to run slower due to lack of space. One quick way to speed up these apps might be to get rid of apps that take up more space than they should, especially if you don’t use them regularly.

To find out how much space apps, temporary files, and documents are taking up space, go to Settings > System > Storage. handle View more categories To see a full list.

To get an idea of ​​what you want to toss, click Cleaning Recommendations To see what Windows 11 suggests you probably won’t ditch your browser, but you may find that a game you haven’t played in years is a heavy burden to drop.

6. Close background apps to save battery

Apps running in the background can receive information, send notifications, and stay updated, even when you’re not using them — which can be useful, but it can also suck your battery and data.

To control which apps are running in the background and save some battery power and data, go to Settings > System > Power and Battery. handle Battery saver Then set when to run Battery Saver to limit certain notifications and background activity.

7. Use background scrolling for multiple windows

With Windows 11, you can scroll up and down any window — even if it’s not directly the one you’re working in. This is a useful tool when you have a lot of windows open that you want time to look through – for example, if you want to open new submenu options in new windows to save time clicking back and redirecting on the same page.

Try opening two programs – for example, an Internet browser page and Notepad or a Word document. Arrange both on screen so you can see at least some text on each. While in one window, move the mouse or use the touchpad to go to the second window, then scroll. Even if you are not active in that window, it should allow you to move up and down the page.

The feature should be turned on by default, but if it isn’t, go to Settings > Bluetooth & Devices > Mouseswitch Scroll through inactive windows when I hover over them to employment. Then, you can place your mouse over a window in the background and use the scroll wheel to scroll.

8. Show file extensions in File Explorer

Microsoft hides file extensions by default, which makes life difficult for people who need to search for certain types of files, such as JPEGs and JPGs. to See file extensions in File Explorerdo the following:

1. Using the search in the taskbar, type File Explorer Options, and click it. (There are other ways to get here as well, like using Start Menu search, but this method works just fine.)

2. In the pop-up window, click Opinion tab.

3. If it is checked, uncheck the box that says so Hide the extension of known files. click ProgressingAnd yes. You should now see file extensions for all files in File Explorer.

You can also use the File Explorer Options menu to choose to show empty drives, hidden files and folders, and more.

9. Reduce distractions with focus assist

It’s frustrating trying to get work done when the interruption continues with notifications. You can limit how many you get with the help of focus.

Set it up by going to Settings > System > Focus help. Choose from three options: on (Get all notifications from your apps and contacts), priority only (Only see selected notifications from the list of priorities you assign, and send the rest to your Action Center), and Warning Just (Hide all notifications, except for alerts).

You can also choose to turn this feature on automatically during certain hours, when you’re playing a game or when you’re using an app in full screen mode, for example.

For more Windows 11 laptop tips and tricks, check out How you can help extend the life of your computer’s battery.

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