An access key gives you access to a command by pressing a specific key on the keyboard. Access keys appear on the menu by displaying the underscore character under the shortcut letter.
To use access keys, first press ALT or F10 to highlight the specific menu or dialog box, press the underlined letter of the specific menu or dialog box you want to open, and then press the TAB key to navigate through the menu or dialog box. Alternatively, you can use the arrow keys to navigate through menus, or you can press the specific access key for the menu or command that you want to access.
To see underlined access keys in context menus, you would normally need to Shift + right click instead of just right clicking.
This tutorial will show you how to turn on or off always underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys in menus when they are available for your account in Windows 10.
- Option One: Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus in Settings
- Option Two: Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus in Control Panel
- Option Three: Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus using a REG file
EXAMPLE: Underline access keys in menus turned on and off
Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus in Settings
This option is only available starting with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update version 1709.
3. You can now close Settings if you like.
Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus in Control Panel
3. Under Make it easier to use keyboard shortcuts, check (on) or uncheck (off default) Underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys for what you want, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)
Turn On or Off Underline Access Key Shortcuts in Menus using a REG file
The downloadable .reg files below will modify the string value in the registry key below.
HKEY_CURRENT_USERControl PanelAccessibilityKeyboard Preference
On string value
0 = Off
1 = On
This is the default setting.
5. Double click/tap on the downloaded .reg file to merge it.
6. When prompted, click/tap on Run, Yes (UAC), Yes, and OK to approve the merge.
7. Sign out and sign in to apply.
8. You can now delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.