Alternatively known as Control+A, ^a, and C-a, Ctrl+A is a keyboard shortcut often used to select all text, files, pictures, or other objects while in a graphical user environment.
How to use the Ctrl+A keyboard shortcut
Ctrl+A in Excel and other spreadsheet programs
If you're editing the contents of a cell and press Ctrl+A, nothing will happen.
Ctrl+A in Microsoft PowerPoint
In Microsoft PowerPoint, Ctrl+A has the following functions.
- In the Normal view, select all contents of the slide.
- In the Slide Sorter view, select all slides.
- In the Slide Show view, change the pen tool to the normal cursor.
Ctrl+A in Word and other word processors
In Microsoft Word and other word processors, pressing Ctrl+A selects all of the text in the document. If you're working with a document with multiple pages, this keyboard shortcut selects all text on all pages.
Using Ctrl+A in an Internet browser
All major Internet browsers (e.g., Chrome, Edge, Firefox) pressing Ctrl+A selects all text, images, and other objects on the page. If you do not want to select everything it may be better to use the mouse to select only what you want.
Using Ctrl+A in PuTTY
With PuTTY Ctrl+A moves to the beginning of the line currently being typed.
Related keyboard shortcuts and keys
Below are links to related keyboard shortcuts and individual key pages.