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Ask Max: Accessing the System Menus without a mouse

Asked on 09/10/2007:

How do I use keyboard to access Apple (Blue top left) ; or FILE ; EDIT : etc.Then how to select an item on the drop down list ?
If these things are in a tutorial supplied with OS X, I did not find them.Any place on WEB?
Tried three OS X books from local library,no discussion of keyboard control like these items.


I think I understand what you want to do. Like you, I do not like to take my hands off the keyboard to grab the mouse. Apple understands that not everyone wants to use, or can use, a mouse. There is of course a way to get to all of the menu items from the keyboard. The first thing to do is let the Mac OS know you want to use one of the menus along the top of the screen. You do this by pressing the ™Control™ and ™F2™ keys at the same time. The blue Apple menu will turn white with a blue box around it. Now you can use the Arrow keys to navigate the menus. The right and left Arrow keys will move you from menu to menu. The up and down Arrow keys will let you highlight menu items. The ™return™ key will select (click on) the highlighted menu item.

You can use a similar method for the Dock but use ™Control™ and ™F3™ keys to jump to the Dock. All the useful keyboard navigation shortcuts can be found by searching Mac Help for ™Full keyboard navigation keyboard shortcuts.™

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