Free Tech Tip…How to Switch Between Open Computer Programs

Today’s free tech tiphelps people use the tab key to get between open programs without having to go to the bottom of the computer screen each time. Sometimes you need to switch back and forth between two Windows programs.  Or you may need to go to another program that is already running.  Rather than doing this with your mouse (which takes longer), you can do this with the keyboard. This is done by using the keyboard shortcut ALT+TAB.  Before you try this, make sure you are running more than one program.  In fact, to see how this works it is best to have three or more programs running.


You don’t have to close a computer program to open or switch to another application. By using the Alt+Tab key to cycle between the programs, you will be able to see all open programs by looking at the Windows 7 taskbar. Just click any running program on the taskbar to display that window and make it the active tech tips


To switch between open programs on your computer:

  1. Open two or more programs.The last program that you open is the active program.
  2. Press Alt+Tab.You move from one open application window to another.
  3. Press and hold Alt+Tab.A small box reveals all opened programs.
  4. Release the Tab key but keep Alt pressed down; press Tab until you reach the program you want.Each time you press tab, you cycle through the icons representing open programs.
  5. Release the Alt key.Windows 7 switches to whichever program is selected.
  6. To switch back to the last program that was active, simply press Alt+Tab.That program becomes the active program once again.

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