Simple Mouse Pointers Revisited
This tip is for Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10 (all versions)
These tips and tricks can save you time, frustration and open your eyes (and fingers) to new ways of managing your computer and programs. And please forgive the pun (mouse pointers), I couldn’t help it.
These easy mouse pointers…err I mean tips and tricks will make your computer life easier, I tells ya! Here, all on one page, we’ve put together a comprehensive list of our favorite mouse tips and tricks.
Mouse wheel / Middle button tricks
You can use your mouse wheel as a button. Pressing down on the wheel will act like a third mouse button. This can be used to open a web page in a tab by clicking the wheel on any link and can also be used to close a tab by clicking the wheel on any open tab.
Zoom in and Out on a web page, word document, excel spreadsheet, etc. by holding down the Ctrl key and moving the mouse wheel away from you (up)to zoom in and toward you (down) to zoom out.
You can move forward and backward while browsing the Web by holding down the Shift key and scrolling up and down. Scrolling down goes back and scrolling up goes forward.
And did you know that some mouse wheels can be pushed left or right to also move backward and forward on a web page?
So whether you have a middle button or a scroll wheel on your mouse, you have a middle-click option.
Use the mouse and Shift key to select text
Most of you know that you can select files and folders by holding the Shift key and clicking on the first and then the last file/folder. But this also applies to selecting text in documents like MS Word docs as well as text files (and Web pages).
All you have to do is click on the first character in the text you want to copy, then point to the last character, click and release the shift key. All the text between the first click and the last click is selected. Now just press CTRL + C to copy the selected text and CTRL+V to paste it wherever you want…like a Word doc or an email or a text file.
Maximize any program with a double-click
Instead of fumbling around looking or the maximize button between the – and the X in the top-right corner of program and file windows, just double-click anywhere on the title bar to maximize the window. (The title bar is the topmost part of the program window and usually contains the program name.)
Another Middle-Click Trick
Now we’re going to show you a middle-click trick we’re sure you’ll use often.
For this example, we’re going to have you open Notepad, so go ahead open Notepad. If you’re using Windows 10 type Notepad in the taskbar search and click on Notepad (Desktop app) when it appears at the top. On any version of Windows, you can open Notepad this way:
Open a run command (Windows Key + R)
Type Notepad in the run box
When Notepad is open you’ll see its icon in the taskbar. Now middle-click the Notepad icon – you’ll see that it opens a brand new instance of Notepad. You can do this again and again (don’t get crazy) and each time you middle-click on its taskbar icon a new instance of Notepad will open.
You can see (above) that I have four Notepad windows open. I’m working in window #1. By middle-clicking the Notepad icon on my taskbar, I can open as many new Notepad windows as I need. Geeky people call this opening new instances. I call it opening a new program window. Want to be a geek? Call each new window a new instance. Impressive. So, take your choice.
If you think your mouse wheel is not a middle click button, try pressing down on it quickly, just like you would a left or right mouse button. Most of you will find that your mouse’s scroll wheel doubles as a middle mouse button. The mouse I’m using right now is a cheap $15 Wal-Mart wireless mouse – and the wheel doubles as a middle mouse button even on this cheap, cruddy old mouse.
This trick not only works for Notepad but many other programs as well. It will work with any program that lets you open multiple instances. If you have an icon on your taskbar for Chrome, middle-click it – a brand new instance of Chrome will open. Most of you have a File Explorer (Windows Explorer) icon on your taskbar – if you middle-click it, a brand new File Explorer (Windows Explorer) window opens. You do this with a lot of programs- but not all. Some programs allow only one instance to run at a time So try the middle-click trick right now and open multiple instances of programs with a middle-click.