Updated: 03/06/2020 by Computer Hope

Alternatively referred to as Control U and C-u, Ctrl+U is a shortcut key most often used to underline text.


On Apple computers, the shortcut for underline may be Command key+U keys.

How to use the Ctrl+U shortcut key

To use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+U press and hold either Ctrl key on the keyboard and while continuing to hold, press the "U" key with either hand.


On Apple computer keyboards, the Ctrl key is labeled as "control."

Ctrl+U in an Internet browser

In Chrome, Edge, Firefox, and Opera, pressing Ctrl+U opens the source code for the page being viewed. For example, you could press Ctrl+U to view the source code of this page.

In Internet Explorer, Ctrl+U opens the Debugger.

Ctrl+U in Excel and other spreadsheet programs

In Microsoft Excel and other spreadsheet programs, pressing Ctrl+U when one or more cells is selected will underline or remove the underline on the selected cells. If editing the contents of a cell with no selected text, Ctrl+U turns on and off underline for all contents of the cell.


If you're editing the contents of a cell and press Ctrl+U, nothing will happen.


You can also use the Ctrl+4 shortcut to italicize text in Excel.

Ctrl+U in Microsoft PowerPoint

In Microsoft PowerPoint, the Ctrl+U shortcut key underlines any selected text.

Ctrl+U in Outlook

In Microsoft Outlook, pressing Ctrl+U marks a selected read e-mail as un-read.


Use the shortcut Ctrl+Q to mark a selected e-mail as read.

Ctrl+U in Word and other word processors

In Microsoft Word and other word processor programs, highlighting text and pressing Ctrl+U adds an underline below the text. If the text is already underlined, highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+U removes the underline.

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

Ctrl, Keyboard terms, Shortcut key, U, Underline