Navigate Slack with your keyboard

If you use your keyboard to get around, we have shortcuts to help you navigate quickly from one area in Slack to another.

Tip: Learn more about using Slack with a screen reader.


Keyboard shortcuts overview

To view a list of all available keyboard shortcuts, press / (Mac) or Ctrl/ (Windows/Linux) from Slack on your desktop, or visit Slack keyboard shortcuts and commands.

Keyboard navigation basics

Use the keyboard shortcuts below to navigate between elements from the Slack desktop app or Slack in a browser. You’ll know an element is in focus when it’s surrounded by a blue outline, or when a text cursor is blinking in a message field.

Action Desktop app shortcut Browser shortcut

Move focus to the next section

F6

or

Ctrl
(Mac only)

Mac:
F6 
Windows/Linux:
CtrlF6

Move focus to the previous section

ShiftF6

or

Ctrl 
(Mac only)

Mac:
ShiftF6
Windows/Linux:
CtrlShiftF6

Move focus within the current section

Tab or
ShiftTab

Tab or
ShiftTab

Move focus between items in a list, ex. messages, channels, etc. or * or *

Move focus to first unread message

Mac:
J
Windows/Linux:
CtrlJ

Mac:
J
Windows/Linux:
CtrlJ

Move to the oldest message

Home

Home

Move to the most recent message

End

End

*If using a screen reader on Windows, you may need to toggle the virtual cursor off so shortcuts provided by your screen reader don’t collide with Slack shortcuts.

Note: If you’re not typing a message and there aren't any menus open, pressing Esc will mark messages as read. 


Open a conversation

Follow the steps below to open a channel or direct message (DM):

  1. Press K (Mac) or CtrlK (Windows/Linux).
  2. Type the name of a channel or person into the search field.
  3. Press Enter to open the conversation.

Tip: To open a conversation in split view, press  (Mac) or Ctrl (Windows/Linux) and click the name of a channel or DM in your sidebar.


Read messages in a conversation

Move focus to the empty message field and press to start navigating between individual messages. Then, use any of these keys:

  • Page up or Page down to jump up or down.
  • Home to go to the oldest message.
  • End to go to the most recent message.
  • J (Mac) or CtrlJ (Windows/Linux) to move focus to the first unread message.
  • FnShift (Mac) or ShiftPage Up (Windows/Linux) to scroll to the start of the previous day’s messages.
  • FnShift (Mac) or ShiftPage down (Windows/Linux) to scroll to the start of the next day’s messages.
  • Spacebar to scroll through messages.
  • to enter the thread associated with a message. Within the thread, all of the above keys will function the same way. Press from anywhere in the thread to navigate back to the main conversation.

Tip: Continously pressing Tab will allow you to explore channels you don’t have permission to post in.

 

Interact with messages in a conversation

  1. When focused on the empty message input field, press to start navigating between individual messages.
  2. When focused on a message, press Tab to scroll through links, attachments, etc. or use contextual one-key shortcuts to take actions (like editing, replying, or sharing) quickly. 

Tip: To open the Message Actions menu, you can press TabM (on Mac, with full keyboard access enabled) or the Menu key (on Windows).


Navigate unread messages

Press ShiftA (Mac) or CtrlShiftA (Windows/Linux) to open the Unreads view, then use these keys to review your unread messages:

  • or to move between individual messages.
  • OptionClick (Mac) or AltClick (Windows/Linux) to mark a single message as unread.
  • or to expand or collapse a group of messages.
  • Esc to mark a group of messages as unread.

 

 

Related Articles

Recently Viewed Articles