Navigating the user interface using the keyboard
The user interface is navigable using the keyboard. The Tab key is used to
iterate through the controls in a particular scope (for example, a dialog or a view and
its related icons). To navigate to the main controls for the Workbench window
or to tab out of views that use the Tab key (such as editors) use Ctrl+Tab.
Most menus are assigned mnemonics for each entry which allow you to
select them by typing the underlined letter instead of the mouse. You can also
select an item by moving through the menus and sub-menus with the arrow keys.
The various menus available can be accessed using the keyboard in the
- F10 accesses the menus on the main menu bar.
- Shift+F10 pops up the context menu for the current view. (Note: this
shortcut is actually dependent on your window manager, but for most people it
should be Shift+F10.)
- Ctrl+F10 will open the pull down menu for the current view if there is
one. For editors, Ctrl+F10 will open the menu for the marker bar on the left of the
- Alt+mnemonic will activate the Workbench menu for a particular entry
(e.g., Alt+W will bring down the Window menu).
- Microsoft Windows only: Pressing Alt will give focus to the menu
Mnemonics are assigned to most control labels (e.g., buttons, checkboxes,
radio buttons, etc.) in dialog boxes, preference pages, and property pages. To
access the control associated with a label, use the Alt key along with the
letter that is underlined in the label.
Navigation context is saved for the packages, navigator views, Workbench preferences and properties dialogs.
The selected page for the preferences and properties dialog is saved between
invocations of the dialog but are not saved between workbench invocations.
Cycling Editors, Views and Perspectives
To switch between editors, views and perspectives, the workbench provides a cycling
function that is invoked by Ctrl and a function key. All of these cycling
functions recall the last thing selected to allow for rapid cycling back and
forth between two items. The cycling functions are
- Ctrl+F6 - Cycle to Editor
- Ctrl+F7 - Cycle to View
- Ctrl+F8 - Cycle to Perspective
Also, Ctrl+E can be used to activate the editor drop-down, and Ctrl+PageUp
and Ctrl+PageDown can be used for switching between the open editors.
Many of the actions in Eclipse have an accelerator assigned to them. For additional
information on accelerators, see
To quickly access UI elements such as views,
commands, preference pages, and others, you can use the Quick Access dialog,
Window > Navigation > Quick Access
and bound to Ctrl+3 by
default. Start typing in the filter field to see matches. For example,
to open the help view, type Ctrl+3 followed by "help". One
of the first matches will be to open the help view; other matches show
commands and preference pages related to help. You can use the
arrow keys to select a different match for a given filter string. Press
Enter to select the highlighted entry. This will execute the command, or
open the view, perspective, or wizard etc.
You can navigate the help system by keyboard using the following key
- Pressing Tab inside a frame (page) takes you to the next link, button or
- To expand/collapse a tree node, press Right/Left arrows.
- To move to the next topic node, press Down arrow or Tab
- To move to the previous topic node, press Up arrow or Shift+Tab
- To display selected topic, press Enter.
- To scroll all the way up or down press Home or End.
- To go back press Alt+Left arrow; to go forward press Alt+Right arrow.
- To go to the next frame, or toolbar press Ctrl+Tab
(Ctrl+F6, if using Mozilla, or Mozilla based browser).
- To move to previous frame, press Shift+Ctrl+Tab.
(Shift-Ctrl+F6, if using Mozilla, or Mozilla based browser).
- To move to the frame displaying topic content press Alt+K (when using
embedded help browser on Windows, or Internet Explorer).
- To move to Contents tab, press Alt+C
- To move to Search Results tab, press Alt+R
- To move between tabs, press Right/Left arrows.
- To switch view, select a tab and press Enter.
- To switch and move to a view, select a tab and press Up arrow.
- To move to the search entry field, press Alt+S
- To print the current page or active frame, press Ctrl+P.
- To find a string in the current page or active frame, press Ctrl+F
(when using embedded help browser on Windows, or Internet Explorer).
Most labels of controls
on help system pop-up dialogs have mnemonics are assigned to them. To access
the control associated with a label, use the Alt key along with the letter
Accessibility features in Eclipse
Changing the key bindings
Font and color settings in Eclipse