There are two ways of quickly starting an application directly from the keyboard, either create a shortcut on the desktop and give it a key combination, or to use the start menu with the use of the Windows key. The two methods are written below: Method 1: Desktop Shortcut
You will need to copy an applications shortcut to the desktop, so for our example we will use “Microsoft Word”. Once the shortcut has been copied or created on the desktop then by right clicking on the shortcut you should select “Properties”.
The properties window should display as below:
Go to the “Shortcut Key” field which by default will display nothing. It is here that you should input the key combination that you want to use. We will enter the following key combination for our example: CTRL + ALT + W and click on OK to save the change.
Now you should see that by using this key combination, “Microsoft Word” will automatically open.
Method 2: Start Menu
For Windows 2000 and XP (with the classic Start menu)
In the top part of the Start menu, located just above the separation bar, you will find a few shortcuts that have been chosen by programs that are frequently used by you. We have the habit of using the mouse to access these shortcuts but you should also know that you can access them from the keyboard. These are actually available by using the Windows key and the first letter of the shortcuts name. In the example below, to start the “Notepad” application you would use the key combination of Windows + the letter B.