IT productivity tips: working with apps and docs

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Task Method
Start an application

Select Start  , type the first few letters of the application, press Enter or select the app to start it

You can select Start   in the taskbar, or press the Start   key on your keyboard

Open recent documents Select Start  , type the first few letters of the application you used to work on this document, when the application is selected the recent documents will be listed
in the right-hand pane and you can select one to open
Access common app features

Select Start  , type the first few letters of the application, select a quick action from the right-hand pane

These "jump lists" work well for Outlook, Chrome and Edge

Open File Explorer Press Start   + E
Open OneDrive in File Explorer

Double-click on OneDrive   in the taskbar



Working with apps

Task Method
Switch between open apps and recent docs

Press Start   + Tab

This will show a tile grid of all open apps, and list recent documents in a timeline below. Simply select the item you want to access

Managing app windows

Task Method
Maximise active app

Any of:

  • Press Start   + Up 
  • Double-click the app title bar
  • Drag the app title bar to the top of the screen

Drag the app title bar to the middle of the screen to restore the previous size

Snap active app to left/right of screen

Any of:

  • Press Start   + Left   or Start   + Right  
  • Drag the app title bar to the left/right of the screen

Drag the app title bar to the middle of the screen to restore the previous size

Fit two apps side-by-side on one screen

Select the first app, press Start   + Right   (or Start   + Left  ),
then select the second app from the tile grid

To change the % split, position the cursor over the line between the app windows, then drag this line left or right.

Resize an app that has been "fitted to screen"

Drag the app title bar to the middle of the screen

Working with multiple desktops

Virtual desktops (also called workspaces) allow you to switch between multiple desktops using a single screen.

Task Method
Create a second desktop
  1. Press Start   + Tab
  2. Select  New desktop
  3. If you want to move an existing app into the new desktop, simply drag the app preview into the relevant desktop
  4. Select the desktop you want to view
Switch between virtual desktops
  1. Press Start   + Tab
  2. Select the desktop you want to view

Alternatively, press Start   + Ctrl + Left   or Start   + Ctrl + Right   to cycle through your desktops.

Move app to another desktop
  1. Press Start   + Tab
  2. Drag the app preview into the relevant desktop
  3. Select the desktop you want to return to

Working with multiple screens

Task Method
Move an app window to a second screen Select the first app, press Start   + Shift + Right   (or Start   + Shift + Left  )


Task Method
Capture the whole screen

Press Ctrl + PrtScr

Capture the active window

Press Alt + PrtScr

Select and capture part of the screen

Press Start   + Shift + S to select a region to capture

After any screenshot, simply use Paste (Ctrl + V) to insert the capture into any suitable document including OneNote

Record a video/screencast (single app)
  1. Press Start   + G to activate the Xbox Game Bar
  2. Press Ctrl + Alt + R to start recording, and select the microphone if you want to record your speech
  3. Perform the action you wish to record
  4. Press Ctrl + Alt + R to stop recording

After a pause (which can be many seconds) a message will appear to confirm that the video clip has been saved. You will find it in your My Videos folders

Note that this method can only record applications - it cannot be used to capture the desktop or multiple apps.

Record a video/screencast (desktops / multiple apps)

Use the Panopto manual recorder app. On a managed staff PC this is available to install from the Oxford Applications Installer. On a self-managed PC you can install Panopto via Canvas.

Record a video (webcam / camera)
  1. Press Start  , type camera and select the Camera app
  2. Select Take Video   to start your recording. It can take a few seconds for the recording to start - you'll see the timer counting up when its ready 
  3. Complete your recording
  4. Select Stop   to end your recording. Your video will be saved into your Pictures\Camera Roll folder

NB The Camera app has limited functionality, and you cannot independently select the microphone that it will use. For greater functionality you can use the Panopto manual recorder app (see above).




Task Method
Quick lists

Type a bullet character (* or -), press Space and Word will automatically start a bullet list

Type a number (or letter) followed by a full stop, press Space and Word will automatically start a numbered list

Press Enter twice to end the list

Insert a horizontal line Type 4 hyphens ---- and press Enter


Task Method
Quickly calculate sum/average of cells

Select the cells; The SUM, AVERAGE and COUNT are displayed on the right of the bottom status bar

Right-click on the bottom status bar to select which calculations are displayed

Copy visible cells after a data filter
  1. Select Customise quick action toolbar  > More commands in the application title bar
  2. Show All commands, find Select Visible Cells  in the left-hand list and drag it into the right-hand list
  3. Now filter your data table, select the whole area, and select Select Visible Cells in the application title bar


Task Method
Start a presentation

Press F5 to start from slide 1

Pres Shift + F5 to start from the current slide

Move to the next slide

Press Right Arrow  to move to the next slide. You can also click the presentation remote or left mouse button, or press Page Down   or Space 

Move to the previous slide Press Left Arrow   to move to the previous slide. Alternatively press Page Up   
Blank the screen Press B to show a black screen, or W to show a white screen (can provide illumination in a dimmed room)
Record a narration

Select Slide Show > Record Slide Show

This will record audio and attach the relevant segments to each slide. The audio will play automatically in a slideshow, which provide a quick way to record presentations. You can later amend or remove the audio on a slide-by-slide basis

Select an object that is behind another

In some cases you can right-click the front object and select Send to back, enabling you to select your target object

Alternatively, select Home > Editing > Select > Selection pane, and choose your target object from the list provided

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