Citrix/RDP Shortcut Keys... The Cheat Sheet

This is an update posting for my original blog entry on this subject.

It looks like the page to which I was previously linking for Citrix and Microsoft Terminal Server/Remote Desktop hotkeys/keystroke combinations has gone bye-bye.

Rather than leave everybody hanging, here is the original list as found using the Internet Archive's WayBack Machine. Since Session Computing Solutions LLC was gracious enough to make the original list available, it was never my intention to paste it on my blog and claim it as my own. At this point, though, I haven't much point but to make it available here while giving full credit for it to the original page. The only changes I have made are a few tweaks (e.g. line-breaks, font style changes) that make it a little more readable.

[Also, from digging around a little on Citrix's site, it appears that you can make Windows hotkeys "pass-through" to the RDP session. I haven't tried this personally, but supposedly, if you follow the instructions here, you can get native hotkey combinations to be picked up by the remote OS instead of your local Windows. Please drop a comment to let me know if you get this working.]

If this list of keystrokes helps you half as much as it helped me, you are about to have a much, much better day. Enjoy!

(NOTE: You can also download this "Cheat Sheet" as a PDF.)

Terminal Server / Remote Desktop Client Shortcut Keys

Key combination Function Similar local keys
CTRL+ALT+END Opens the Windows Security dialog box

CTRL+ALT+BREAK Toggles the Terminal Services client display from window to full screen

ALT+INSERT Cycles through running programs on the remote computer

ALT+HOME Displays the remote computer's Start menu

ALT+DELETE Displays the remote window's Control menu

CTRL+ALT+NUMBER PAD MINUS Places an image of active window onto the TS clipboard

CTRL+ALT+NUMBER PAD PLUS Places an image of the entire Terminal Services client on the Terminal Services clipboard PRINT SCREEN


Citrix ICA Client Shortcut Keys

Key combination Function Similar local keys
The Task List hotkey displays the local Windows Task List for Windows NT 3.51 client computers or the local Start menu for Windows NT 4.0 or Windows 95 client computers.

SHIFT+F2 The Toggle Title Bar hotkey causes the Citrix ICA Client window to display or hide its Windows title bar.

SHIFT+F3 The Close Remote Application hotkey disconnects the ICA session and exits the ICA Win32 Client. Using this hotkey either leaves the associated application in a disconnected state on the Citrix server or exits the application on the Citrix server, depending on how the application is configured.

CTRL+F1 This hotkey displays the Windows NT Security desktop in the ICA session.

CTRL+F2 When using this hotkey during an ICA session on a WinFrame server, the remote Task List appears. For MetaFrame ICA sessions, the remote Windows NT Start menu appears.

CTRL+F3 This hotkey displays the Windows NT Task Manager in the ICA session.

ALT+F2 Use this hotkey to cycle through maximized and minimized Windows of programs that have been opened in the ICA session.

ALT+PLUS Use this hotkey to cycle through applications that have been opened in the ICA session. A popup box appears and displays the programs as you cycle through them.

ALT+MINUS Cycles through applications that have been opened in the ICA session but in the opposite direction. ALT+SHIFT+TAB


Thanks so much for this! I've just started at a new job and they have a Citrix ICA Client thing. Not being able to alt+tab was getting reeeally annoying :)

Hey, it's my pleasure Jemma. I was in the same boat as you not so very long ago. It seemed ridiculous to me that there wasn't some way to get standard hotkeys to work. After many serious doses of frustration, I found this list. As you can guess, that suddenly became a very happy day for me.

These keys are not useful for me.......we are using citrix metaframe and its open in our system as a virtual desktop basically that machine is on some other country and we are using it in our country so after login our system we have to login in remote system by using some login ID and password but there is ALT+TAB key is not working and we have to toggle on the windows many times........its citrix metaframe RDP it possible u to provide me that shortcut keys, by using this i would be able to toggle on windows........i'll be thnkful to u...plz help me........


I am very new to the ctrix environment.

Can you tell me how to switch from a full screen citrix session to my normal windows xp desktop?

Many Thanks

Thank you, Jemma.........
That was really relaxing after i found this link......i am a person who is completly used to keyboard and it has become very difficult to work with ICA without shorkut made my day......:)

I totally know what you mean, Udaya. I only use my mouse when absolutely necessary.

I'm glad I could help!

Thanks so much for this! I've just started at a new job and they have a Citrix ICA Client thing. Not being able to alt+tab was getting reeeally annoying :-p

It's my pleasure, Roger. It just goes to show you how it's the little things that make all the difference when it comes to user input/user interfaces.

Good luck with your new job!

It was very Nice article Taylor. ALT + [PLUS | MINUS] thts what i was looking for :). Also is there any shortcut key to retrieve clipboard ?

I am using citrix online plugin (ICA)to connect remotely to the machines located outside our premises. Now most of the keyboard shortcuts work but the replacement of Alt+Tab does not work. I have tried both Alt+Home and Alt+[Plus]/[Minus], but both of them do not work.
I am using Toshiba Satellite L510 laptop. Now the + key is accessible only after pressing shift i.e it is on the top of =. So i also tried Alt + Shift + [PLUS] but it does not work.

Any guesses how can i switch between applications while connected to the remote machine using citrix ICA client, from a Toshiba Satellite laptop.

Hi Soumitra.

I'm sorry this isn't working for you. In the past, I have had issues getting particular key combinations to work with certain laptops. In some cases, it was simply impossible. I'm afraid that there may be no way to type in this particular combination of keys with your laptop. If such is the case, you'll have to use an external (i.e. Bluetooth or USB) keyboard to get around this issue.

Good luck,


The key combination doesn't work with my HP Elitebook 2530 either.
I'm also using the citrix online plugin (ICA) with a window of 95%, not full screen..

I work at a Help Desk with multiple RDP and ICA sessions for our different clients and this list made my day.

I appreciate you putting this up for other folks to see! Have a great Day Today!

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This page contains a blog entry by Taylor Bastien published on April 24, 2009 8:26 AM AD.

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