When you’re working on a computer with a small screen, it’s amazing how much space the toolbars can take up. But web browsers and word processors have a little-known feature called “full-screen mode” that gets rid of them. Here’s how to use it.
The shortcut that you usually need is the F11 key. Occasionally, there might be a different shortcut, so if it doesn’t work, it’s probably worth exploring the menus. It’s probably near the zoom options, likely on a View menu if there is one.
To get out, you either need to press Escape or F11 again. If you’re in a browser, sometimes the key won’t work because your focus is in a Flash or Java applet (like a YouTube video or a game). In this case you should just be able to click on some blank space on the page and then try the keystroke again.
Most programs will temporarily display the toolbar if you bounce the mouse against the top of the screen. If you forget the keystroke to exit full-screen mode or it just isn’t working, there’s often an “exit full screen” or restore button as well.
Soren “scorchgeek” Bjornstad
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Copyright 2012 Soren Bjornstad.
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