Active tab

Updated: 12/31/2020 by Computer Hope

An active tab is the tab currently being used. For example, if you have multiple tabs open in your browser since you're reading this page, it would be considered the active tab. Any other tabs open are considered an inactive tab.

active tab

As shown above, an active tab may have a different color for the appearance of being on top of other tabs. In the picture above, the Computer Hope tab is the active tab, and YouTube and the Google search tabs are inactive.

To change between tabs, click the tab you want to become active. You can also use any of the below shortcut keys when working with tabs in most programs.

Ctrl+Tab = Switch between open tabs.
Ctrl+Shift+Tab = Switch between open tabs in opposite direction.
Ctrl+T = Open a new tab.
Ctrl+Shift+T = Open a closed tab.
Ctrl+F4 = Close the active tab.

See our tabbed browsing definition for further tips and information about tabs in browsers.

Active, Active window, Browser, Software terms, Tab