Geek Stuff

How to Effectively Use Windows 7 Sticky Notes

Sticky Notes is a new groovy little application included with . When I first tried Sticky Notes I wasn’t that impressed, however, after running Windows 7 for several months, I now find myself using this new app daily.  I guess you could say I’m “stuck” on Sticky Notes (sorry I couldn’t help myself.)

What is Sticky Notes?  Essentially it’s just like using real sticky notes minus the whole killing the trees thing.  The most appealing feature of Sticky Notes, however, is the convenience factor.  You can create a new sticky note, close the application and then reopen it later exactly as you left it.  No need to save and no hassle for coming up with file names.  It’s like clipboard meets notepad. A match made in heav.. err Seven, Windows 7 that is.

A few features to look at:

  • Change the color of your notes to help you organize them (right-click any note to bring up the color options menu.)
  • Stack notes to conserve space.
  • Resize notes by dragging corners or edges.
  • Scrollbar is on the right side for extra long notes, or copy/paste jobs. (Remember these are “notes” not books.) :)
  • FREE!!  Sticky Notes come with all version of Windows 7.  Very Groovy!

Windows 7 Sticky Notes : Screenshot

Let’s look at a few not so obvious features.

How to change Sticky Note font

Unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of options here; these are the offerings.

Windows 7 Sticky Notes Fonts : Screenshot

Size, bold, italic, underlined, strikethrough, and lists.  There is no menu to adjust these properties, so you’ll have to use Hotkeys.

Note:  First Select the Text in your sticky note, then use the Hotkeys Listed below:

  • Ctrl + b   Makes text bold
  • Ctrl + i   Makes text italic
  • Ctrl + u  Makes text underlined
  • Ctrl + t   Make strikethrough text
  • Ctrl + Shift +  >  Makes text larger
  • Ctrl + Shift +  <  Makes text smaller
  • Ctrl + Shift + L  To create lists or bullets, hit this key combination repeatedly to toggle between list types.

Another cool feature is – say you are a busy person and have A LOT of sticky notes like this:

Windows 7 Sticky Notes : Screenshot

This clutter can make a pretty big mess because you can’t minimize individual notes.  If you don’t want to fill up your entire desktop, you’ll have to stack them.  This situation causes a problem because managing a huge pile of sticky notes is still a mess whether it’s on the computer screen or your desk.  So here is the solution.

How to list your sticky notes and easily access or view all of them as a list

Windows 7 Create New Shortcut : Screenshot

1. Right-Click any open area on your Desktop, and Select New then Shortcut.  A Create Shortcut window will appear, in the empty white box Type or Paste the following address:



2. Click Next and on the following window enter a name for your shortcut.  I like just to keep it simple and Type in Sticky Notes.

Windows 7 Create New Shortcut : Screenshot


3.  Now Right-Click the Shortcut you just created and Select Properties.  Under the Shortcut Key, you can put whatever shortcut you like. I chose to do Ctrl + Shift + S.

Windows 7 Create New Shortcut Key Assignment Menu : Screenshot

Now here is the resulting window that will appear when you click on the shortcut or when you hit your Shortcut Key (Ctrl + Shift + S.)  Optionally, you can change to a detailed view to see the date and time of each note.  If you’re like me, you don’t like having clutter on your desktop, so you can always move your Sticky Notes shortcut to a folder anywhere on your computer.

Windows 7 Sticky Note Detailed Page : Screenshot

If you wanted to backup your sticky notes and send them to a friend, you can do so by browsing to:

C:\Users\YourUSERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Sticky Notes

Then make a copy of StickyNote.snt


That’s all folks; this is about as in-depth as we can go with this simple program.  I hope you enjoyed this How-To article regarding Windows 7 Sticky Notes. 



  1. 1upMushroom

    I never thought it would be possible to go this in depth with Sticky Notes, great article!

  2. MrGroove

    Hehheh agreed. Just one of the many hidden new apps I'm really diggin with Windows 7.

    • Annie

      Have used sticky notes happily for some time and then have had a gap of a few months without using them. They seem to have disappeared off my computer altogether!! Don’t remember getting rid of them as I find them useful. Can anyone throw any light on this and advise on how to get them back?

      Have tried start, sticky notes – nothing
      Right-click on desktop – nothing

      • grooveDexter

        Let’s check and make sure it’s still on your computer!
        Copy the following:

        Now paste that into the Start Menu and Press Enter. Sticky Notes should load. If it doesn’t that means it is missing or corrupted.

        • krishna

          I found it in this way.. tks a lot..
          the article is great.. giving detailed and useful knowledge to one who is looking for it… Tks a lot man.

        • HIMANSHU

          This is Correct way to write the path.

          C:\Users\YOUR PC NAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Sticky Notes

          SIR ! It’s only work when we use forward slash. Instead of


          If we don’t windows 7 shows invalid path error.


          • Steve Krause

            Thnx for the FYI. We had that in there but the slash must have been stripped from the article for some reason. Fixed!

  3. ShockerSH

    LOL OMG! Love the hotkeys. I've been using sticky notes since day 1 however I never knew about changing the colors etc… Nice find MrGroove!

  4. AlexMVP


  5. Daniel

    I'd use Sticky Notes, but that childish typeface simply turns me off. I want a standard typeface, like the one I'm using now.

  6. MrGroove

    I personally wish there was a way to minimize a few of them rather than all of them at once. I think it was a good idea for Microsoft but still needs a few tweaks!

    • walter

      hello I am wondering if you happen to know why my sticky notes keep moving to the center of my screen I move them other places but when I put my pc in to sleep mode and start up again they move I am running windows 8.1 pleas and thank you

  7. Harold Menzel

    I just have a couple of sticky notes and want to move them so I can see all of them.

  8. Harvey Clay

    Windows 7 Professional 64 bit.
    I created the Sticky Notes shortcut on the desktop, set the keyboard shortcut key, hit apply and OK. I moved the shortcut to a folder in My documents and it does not work there. I moved it back to the desktop and the shortcut worked but i had to delete the keyboard shortcut and recreate and reapply beofre it would work again. I would like to move the shortcut off my desktop as it is the only thing showing, but it does not seem to work when moved off the desktop.

    • Marco

      Have similar problem on my 7/64 –

      Launching StickyNotes from the desktop icon is a piece of cake. Moved this icon to the ObjectDock bar – the icon stops working THERE and gives “windows cannot find …… where the path is the right one!

      Next thing I’ve noticed is Windows explorer CAN’T SEE StikyNot.exe in c:\windows\system32. Couldn’t believe my eyes… I do: cmd, – cd c:\windows\system32 – dir Sti*.exe – yes, sirreee it’s there.

      Guess it’s all about command shell environment or silly variables.
      Sending a diarrhea beam to the unknown developer in India.

  9. msikdm

    Thank you!!!

  10. Raini

    I am on windows7 32 bit professional. How do I get the sticky note app to start at startup? I have looked in msconfig and it is not listed nor does it allow you to add.
    Thank you

  11. Harvey Clay

    Create a shortcut to the program executable: C:\Windows\System32\StikyNot.exe Put the shortcut in the startup folder:
    For an individual user:

    C:\users\%username%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

    For all users:

    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

    • Raini

      Thank you, works like a charm!


  12. Shane

    When i first saw Sticky Notes I thought. “Meh, Apple ripoff!” But then I actually had occasion to use it and now i drop little tidbits of information into stickies all the time :)

  13. Jonathan

    If you hate the (default and only) font of sticky notes, you can paste any font you want from Word or Wordpad. The font from the text you copied will stay there forever.

    It’s a little OCD, but you can copy a couple letters from any previous note into a new note, and the whole note can then be in the altered font.

    Yes, all my notes are in my preferred font.

  14. Robbie

    Cant get the short cut to work, just keep getting “windows cannot find”
    “make sure you typed the name correctly” (copied & pasted as above)

  15. Harvey

    Where it says “YourUSERNAME”, did you remove this and type in your user name?

    • Robbie

      Thanks for response. Yes I did. Here’s exactly what’s in the shortcut


      and this is the location C:\Windows\system32

  16. Harvey

    Is your “User Name” “CRobsLaptop-PC” or “CRob” or something else? Make sure you are using your “user name” and not the “computer name”. On Windows 7 your user name is found here C:\Users\”User Name”. It will also be the name used for the account that is set up that you log in on.

  17. Ken

    So how do I remove the sticky notes from my desktop? I figured out your handy folder, but it still doesn’t solve the problem of sticky notes all over my monitor! i cant delete them or it deletes them in both places !

    • Sam

      Either hit the Show Desktop button by your clock or click on the Sticky Notes button in your taskbar.

  18. ben

    this might sound stupid but how could you retore deleted sticky notes?

  19. marisa

    Hi !
    I have a lot of notes, this make my desktop so cluttered!

    Is this a way to save (or place) a stikie in one particuliar folder, so I see it only when I open this very folder ?
    Or to attach it to a particuliar file or doc ?
    That would be so handy, and so meore eficient !

    Thank you Mrisa

  20. Brian Peterson

    If you’re having trouble with the shortcut (mine stopped working after a while for some reason), you can create a saved search on your desktop that does pretty much the same thing.

    1. Go to C:Users[YOUR USERNAME]SearchesSticky Notes (Windows Sticky Notes)

    2. That will open a Win 7 search window to search only in the Sticky Notes folder. Type an asterisk * as your search term, and that will display all notes. Click on the details view to see the dates of each note (“date modified”).

    3. Click on “Save search” at the top and save the search to your desktop. Now, any time you want to see what date you created a note, just click on your search shortcut.

  21. Mandy

    I have copied and pasted the shortcut name with my user name replacing the “YourUserName” as you show & created a new shortcut. A double click on the shortcut results in the same error message as it did to Robbie on November 12, 2011.

  22. Alan

    I love Sticky Notes but have one issue. I use a laptop with three monitors at work and when I go back and forth from home the notes pile up and move between the two environments. Is there any way to snap to grid, auto-align, move all notes at one time, auto stack, or any other way to line my notes up other than grabbing and moving one at a time? I know this seems minor but I spend a minute or so every time I boot up positioning my notes.

    Thank you!

    • tx guest

      I am also looking for a solution for this problem.

  23. Ghazala

    somebody plz tell me how to restore a sticky note to a particular date or how can I see when I added a specific line to my sticky note.

  24. Mark

    1 Tip and 1 Question

    TIP: Programmers must get use to shorthand. The StickyNote.snt file is in C:UsersYourUSERNAMEAppDataRoamingMicrosoftStickyNotes.snt

    Question: Is there a way to open “one note” instead of all of them. I don’t see much utility in this list because when I click on one they all show up. It doesn’t even highlight the one I’m looking for. Any suggestions?

  25. Jim Smith

    I would like to put my notes into a folder and have them only display when that folder is open? (I can see myself having a folder for each of many projects I have to work on.)


    Good morning!!Thanks!!

  27. Joe Jones

    I found if you just put an * asterisk in the Sticky Note Search, In Windows 7 Search Connector, in the C:\Users\Owner\Searches, Folder; It brings up all the sticky notes on your computer :-)

  28. Britta

    Can I use the header space of the sticky note? I’d like to put key words in the header to easily identify my sticky notes.

  29. Harvey Clay

    I don’t think so. That area is used by the program to allow you to add a new note or delete that note.

  30. Mark Roda

    I was deleting a whole bunch of useless programs,
    and I must have deleted something that Sticky notes needed.
    Cuz now I can’t access my sticky notes !!

    HELP ME !!

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