Pause key

Pause keyLocated near the top right of most PC keyboards and shared with the break key (as shown in the image), the Pa or pause key can be used to temporarily halt the actions of the program being run or the scrolling of text. For example, the pause key could be used to momentarily stop a computer game, like Deus Ex or the Call of Duty games, while the user steps away.

Note: Most compact notebooks and netbook-style computers do not have a pause key.

Depending on the program or the specific action desired, users may need to press the Shift or Ctrl key plus the Pause key to pause a program or game. On a computer with the Microsoft Windows operating system, users can also press the Windows key and the pause key to bring up the System Properties window.

The most common use for the pause key today is to pause the screen output from the BIOS when a computer is first booting up.

Where is the Pause key on the keyboard?

The Pause key may be abbreviated as Pa or Pause and is found with the other control keys on the keyboard. Below is an overview of a computer keyboard with the Pause key highlighted in blue.

Print screen key

Note: On Apple computer keyboards the Pause key may be missing and have an F15 function key instead.

Related pages

Also see: Break, Control keys, Keyboard terms, Pause