How to Switch Between Windows in Windows 11: A Step-by-Step Guide

Switching between windows in Windows 11 is a breeze once you get the hang of it. Whether you have multiple programs open for work or you’re juggling between different browser tabs, being able to swiftly move from one window to the next can boost your productivity. So, let’s dive into how you can master this handy skill.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Switch Between Windows in Windows 11

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s understand why you’d want to switch between windows. Maybe you’re a multitasker with several applications open, or perhaps you’re copying information from one place to another. Whatever the reason, knowing how to switch quickly can save you time and frustration.

Step 1: Use the Alt + Tab Keyboard Shortcut

Press and hold the Alt key, then tap the Tab key to cycle through open windows.

The Alt + Tab shortcut is probably the most well-known method for switching windows. When you press these keys together, a small overlay appears, showing you all the open windows. Keep tapping Tab until you land on the window you want, then let go of both keys to bring it to the forefront.

Step 2: Use Task View

Press the Windows key + Tab to open Task View and click on the window you wish to switch to.

Task View gives you a thumbnail preview of all your open windows. It’s like spreading out all your documents on a table and picking the one you need. Plus, it’s a visual way to see everything you have open without cycling through each window.

Step 3: Click on the Window’s Taskbar Icon

Click the icon of the program you want to switch to on the taskbar.

This method is straightforward. Look at the taskbar (that’s the bar at the bottom of your screen with all the little icons), find the program you want, and click on it. It’s like tapping a friend on the shoulder to get their attention.

Step 4: Use the Alt + Esc Shortcut

Press Alt + Esc to quickly switch to the next window in line.

This shortcut is less known but super useful. Instead of showing you a preview, it just flips to the next window instantly. It’s like flipping through pages in a book without looking at the contents.

Step 5: Use Windows + Number Key

Press the Windows key + Number key that corresponds to the position of the app on the taskbar.

This one’s a bit like a secret code. Each program on your taskbar is assigned a number, starting with 1 on the left. If you know the position of the app, you can use this shortcut to jump straight to it.

After you complete these actions, your desired window will be front and center, ready for you to use.

Tips for Switching Between Windows in Windows 11

  • If you have a lot of windows open, keep pressing Tab to cycle through all of them.
  • Task View also allows you to create and manage virtual desktops for even more organization.
  • Hovering your mouse over a taskbar icon shows you a preview of the open windows for that program.
  • The Alt + Esc shortcut is great when you know the order of your windows and want to switch quickly.
  • You can also right-click on a taskbar icon to see a list of open windows and select the one you want.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I switch between tabs in a browser using keyboard shortcuts?

Press Ctrl + Tab to move to the next tab, or Ctrl + Shift + Tab to move to the previous tab.

Can I close a window using a keyboard shortcut?

Yes, press Alt + F4 to close the active window.

Is there a way to switch to a specific window without cycling through all of them?

Yes, use the Windows key + Number key based on the app’s position on the taskbar, or click directly on the window’s preview in Task View.

Can I switch between windows of the same program?

Yes, use Ctrl + Click on the program’s taskbar icon to cycle through its windows.

How can I see all my open windows at once?

Press the Windows key + Tab to open Task View and view all open windows.


  1. Use the Alt + Tab keyboard shortcut.
  2. Open Task View with Windows key + Tab.
  3. Click on the window’s icon on the taskbar.
  4. Use the Alt + Esc shortcut.
  5. Press Windows + Number key.


Mastering the art of switching between windows in Windows 11 is like learning to drive a stick shift – it gives you more control and can make your workflow smoother and more efficient. There’s something satisfying about flicking through windows with keyboard shortcuts, almost like a productivity ninja moving undetected through a sea of tasks. And let’s not forget the visual pleasure of Task View, lining up your windows for your perusal like a digital buffet of your ongoing projects.

For those who enjoy a good multitasking session, these tips and tricks can be game-changers. They can transform a chaotic jumble of windows into a well-oiled machine, where every window is just a keystroke away. And when you’re in the zone, with your fingers dancing across the keyboard, switching from one task to another with the grace of a pianist, you’ll wonder how you ever managed without these shortcuts.

So, whether you’re a seasoned Windows user or new to Windows 11, take a moment to practice these techniques. They might just make your computer use that much more enjoyable and productive. And who knows? Maybe you’ll find yourself teaching someone else how to switch between windows like a pro.

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