Updated: 10/07/2019 by Computer Hope

Alt+F4 is a shortcut key most often used to close the current active window. For example, if you pressed the shortcut key now while reading this page on your computer browser, it would close the browser window and all open tabs.


If you want to close a tab or window open in a program, but not close the complete program, use the Ctrl+F4 keyboard shortcut.

How to use the Alt+F4 shortcut key

To use the keyboard shortcut Alt+F4, press and hold either Alt key on the keyboard and, while continuing to hold, press the F4 function key with either hand.

Alt+F4 in Microsoft Windows

While running any program in Microsoft Windows, if Alt+F4 is pressed, it closes the currently active program. If no programs are open or you are at the desktop, pressing Alt+F4 opens the Shutdown window.


Unless the program has unsaved changes, pressing Alt+F4 will close the window with no warning.

Below are links to related keyboard key and keyboard shortcut pages.

Alt, F, Keyboard terms, Shortcut key