Customers are all the time trying to find methods to make their computing lives better–the Home windows 10 PowerToys are made particularly for this goal.

Irrespective of what number of options Microsoft crams into its Home windows 10 working system, there’ll all the time be customers in search of a sooner, higher, or on the very least, totally different method of doing issues. The iteration of an working system (regardless of how properly it really works) is simply a part of human nature and it can’t be suppressed, so, why not embrace it?

Microsoft’s acknowledgement of this pressure of human nature is the Home windows 10 PowerToys obtain. A set of barely uncommon free Home windows instruments has been part of the Home windows working system panorama since Home windows 95, however their availability has been noticeably absent for Home windows 10—at the very least till September 2019.

In 2019, Microsoft, in partnership with growth firm Janea Programs, launched the primary two PowerToys for Home windows 10, accompanied by a promise of extra releases within the close to future. This TechRepublic cheat sheet describes every out there software or characteristic offered by Microsoft’s official Home windows 10 PowerToys. Observe: This text can be out there as a download–Cheat sheet: Home windows 10 PowerToys (free PDF).

SEE: 20 professional tricks to make Home windows 10 work the best way you need (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

When was Home windows PowerToys first out there?

The primary set of Home windows PowerToys had been made out there for Home windows 95. That first set of 15 free utilities had been printed and endorsed by Microsoft and made out there in a free obtain.

From the start, PowerToys had been designed for use by “energy customers” in search of methods to tweak the best way the working system features. In some instances, a careless change made utilizing a PowerToys utility by an inexperienced consumer might trigger havoc with the Home windows working system, so novice customers had been inspired to make use of warning.

For probably the most half, although, PowerToys would permit customers, whether or not they thought of themselves “energy” or not, to extra simply make tweaks to the feel and appear of Home windows with out a deep dive into configuration screens or the dreaded and harmful edit of the Home windows Registry file. Home windows 95 PowerToys included:

  • TweakUI was used for tweaking obscure Home windows settings.
  • CD Autoplay allowed all CDs to autoplay, not simply audio CDs.
  • Command Immediate Right here opened a command immediate within the present listing.
  • Discover from Right here opened File Explorer within the present listing.
  • FlexiCD allowed a consumer to manage an audio CD from the Taskbar.
  • Xmouse 1.2 allowed a consumer to alter window focus by shifting the mouse cursor, no click on wanted.

By the years and the assorted Home windows variations, particular person PowerToys have come and gone. Every new Home windows model impressed a brand new set of instruments based mostly on what builders perceived was wanted to enhance and improve that model. Home windows 10 has impressed a very new set of PowerToys.

Further assets

How can I get Home windows 10 PowerToys?

Historically, every energy toy has been provided as a separate executable file, out there as a free obtain from a selected Microsoft web site. For Home windows 10, Microsoft is taking a barely totally different strategy: All Home windows 10 PowerToys are actually included as a part of a free downloadable system that customers can configure. Determine A reveals you what the Home windows 10 PowerToys system appears like.

Determine A

The first Home windows 10 PowerToys Model 0.45.0 is offered on GitHub proper now. Launch v0.45.0 focuses on including installer updates and optimizations, common bug fixes and accessibility enhancements. The builders labored extensively with the group to construct an up to date settings menu UI that takes benefit of the newest styling components to supply customers with a refreshed, fashionable expertise.

An experimental model of PowerToys (v0.46) shall be launched mid-September and can embrace an up to date model of Video Convention Mute.

These PowerToys are presently out there:

  • FancyZones
  • Home windows key Shortcut Information
  • PowerRename
  • Preview Pane addons for File Explorer
  • Picture resizer
  • Window walker
  • PowerToys Run
  • Keyboard Supervisor
  • Coloration Picker
  • Video Convention Mute 
  • Awake

SEE: All of TechRepublic’s cheat sheets and good individual’s guides

What can Home windows 10 PowerToys do?

Here’s a checklist of accessible Home windows 10 PowerToys with a quick description of what every toy does.


FancyZones permits customers to handle the place and the way every separate utility window open on a Home windows 10 desktop will show.

For instance, you would use FancyZones to arrange a Home windows 10 desktop the place Outlook all the time shows on the right-hand aspect of the desktop, Twitter or different social media all the time shows on the left-hand aspect of the desktop, and Phrase or Excel all the time shows within the center between the opposite two. There can be three distinct and perpetual zones displayed always. Determine B reveals how you choose that configuration.

Determine B


Determine B

Home windows key Shortcut Information

The Home windows key Shortcut Information will show the entire out there keyboard shortcuts for the present Home windows 10 desktop (Determine C). This PowerToy is activated by holding the Home windows key down for the size of time specified within the software’s configuration settings. The default is 900ms. Now customers will not have to recollect all these Home windows key-related shortcut combos.

Determine C


Determine C


The PowerRename Home windows 10 PowerToy offers customers with superior instruments for bulk renaming of file names. The toy extends the Home windows Shell Context Menu so as to add an entry for PowerRename to File Explorer (Determine D). With PowerRename enabled, easy search and substitute or extra highly effective common expression matching to the majority renaming course of are added to your toolset. A preview space is displayed as you carry out search and substitute procedures so customers can see how file names will change earlier than initiating the motion.

Determine D


Preview Pane addons for File Explorer

This Home windows 10 PowerToy expands on the Preview Pane characteristic already out there in the usual File Explorer utility by including extra file varieties. Preview Pane permits customers to preview the contents of a file after clicking it in File Explorer with out truly opening the file, as proven in Determine E. Model 0.16.0 provides preview help for Scalable Vector Graphics (.svg) and Markdown (.md) information. Further file varieties are in growth.

Determine E


Picture Resizer

The Picture Resizer Home windows 10 PowerToy provides extra performance to File Explorer by permitting customers to use bulk picture resizing. Customers choose pictures in File Explorer after which choose the brand new Resize photos merchandise on the context menu (Determine F), revealed with a right-click on any picture.

Determine F


Home windows Walker

The Home windows Walker Home windows 10 PowerToy is designed to be a substitute for the usual Alt-Tab characteristic of Home windows 10. Customers press the CTRL-Home windows key mixture as an alternative of Alt-Tab to tug up a search field (Determine G). A consumer enters key phrases into the search field to slim down the presently open apps and screens on their desktop.

Determine G


PowerToys Run

PowerToys Run acts as a fast launcher in Home windows 10. It’s one other extension of the ALT-Tab idea and faucets into the Home windows 10 file indexing system. To activate the software, use the keyboard mixture ALT-House and begin typing the identify of your required utility, as proven in Determine H. PowerToys Run will search the system and begin itemizing doable purposes based mostly in your search phrase. When the applying you need seems, click on or faucet to run.

Determine H


Keyboard Supervisor

The Keyboard Supervisor utility in Home windows 10 PowerToys is a straightforward keyboard re-mapper. Run the applying from the PowerToys menu (Determine I) and both remap a single key in your keyboard or remap a shortcut keyboard mixture. No matter you remap will stay energetic so long as Keyboard Supervisor is enabled and PowerToys is operating within the background.

Determine I


Coloration Picker

Coloration Picker was contributed to the Home windows 10 PowerToys challenge by Martin Chrzan. The utility permits you to determine any coloration in your display by both its HEX or RGB code after which save that info to the Home windows 10 clipboard for later use (Determine J). It’s a easy software, however it could possibly save time and forestall frustration for builders and content material creators engaged on coloration design.

Determine J


Video Convention Mute

Due to COVID-19 well being and security precautions, many people are counting on video teleconferencing for work and faculty interactions and collaboration. The Video Convention Mute software in Home windows 10 PowerToys (Determine Ok) permits you to mute the audio and video in your PC with a single key mixture. You might mute each audio and video on the similar time or independently. The identical key mixture will toggle the audio and video again to the on place. The Video Convention Mute software works no matter what app you’re utilizing or what app is presently within the foreground.

Determine Ok



The Home windows 10 PowerToys software Awake was contributed to the PowerToys challenge by the group with attribution given to Den Delimarsky. Awake permits customers to maintain their laptop awake on-demand with out having to handle its energy settings. The easy configuration display for Awake is proven in Determine L.

Determine L


New Home windows 10 PowerToys shall be added to the checklist of accessible instruments periodically.

Further assets

Why are Home windows 10 PowerToys necessary?

Home windows 10 PowerToys present instruments and options that may make customers of the Home windows working system extra productive and, by extension, happier. Through the years, many customers have come to rely upon a number of of those PowerToys for his or her each day laptop productiveness. For a lot of energy customers, PowerToys enhance their high quality of life.

Past making customers extra productive, PowerToys have additionally offered a glimpse of what options and instruments might develop into an integral a part of the Home windows working system sooner or later. Many of those as soon as separate instruments have develop into simply one other a part of the working system throughout its subsequent iteration.

Further assets

Editor’s word: This text was up to date to replicate the newest model of Home windows 10 PowerToys.

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