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Make Windows 10 Underline and Highlight Menu Shortcut Keys

menu items

Underlined keyboard shortcuts are not enabled by default in native Windows 10 programs and system utility menus.

Microsoft has always included keyboard shortcuts for navigating the operating system, but having to remember all of them isn’t practical. To make it easier, some of the programs do include shortcut keys in the menu. You can make it even easier by making Windows underline shortcut keys on menu items. This feature is disabled by default, but it’s easy to enable – here’s how.

Note: If you are still rocking an older version of Windows, check out our article on how to underline keyboard shortcuts in Windows 7. For more on getting your keyboard kung-fu chops up to snuff, bookmark our list of Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts. Also, thanks to Windows 10 forums member awaixjvd for starting a discussion thread on this topic.

Make Windows 10 Highlight Menu Shortcuts

Open Settings and select Ease of Access from the main menu.

2 Ease of Access Windows 10 Settings

Select Keyboard in the left panel and scroll down in the right pane and turn on Enable shortcut underline under the Other Settings section.

Enable Shortcut Underlines

After it’s turned on you will see the shortcut keys are underlined in native utility and program menus throughout Windows 10.

Underline Menu Enabled

Note that when this setting is enabled, other menu items in the modern UI in the Windows 10 menu system are highlighted. For example, in the shot below I opened the Battery menu from the taskbar, and you can see that the power level slider is highlighted.

When the setting is turned off the highlight box no longer appears.

You can also still access this from the classic Control Panel while it lasts. Microsoft is moving everything from Control Panel into the Settings app. Hit the Windows key and type: control panel and hit Enter and select Ease of Access Center.

Control Panel Ease of Access Center

Scroll down the list and click the “Make the keyboard easier to use” link.

Easy to Use Classic

Then scroll down all the way down and check “Underline Keyboard Shortcuts and Access Keys” and click OK at the bottom of the window to save the changes.

underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys

This may seem like a subtle setting considering everything new in Windows 10 these days, but for some, it’s a necessity. And sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference to your workflow when trying to get things done.

Do you like to have this setting enabled when working in Windows or prefer it to be off? Let us know in the comment section below or join us in the Windows 10 Forums for more discussion and troubleshooting advice.

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