Shortcut keys (sometimes erroneously referred to as accelerator keys or hot keys) are keys or key combinations that users can press for quick access to actions.
Shortcut keys differ from access keys. Access keys are assigned to every control so that the user can use the keyboard to move through the UI quickly. Shortcut keys allow the user to perform a common action without having to go through the UI, but they are not available for every command. Most access keys are associated with the modifier key ALT, and most shortcut keys are associated with the modifier key CTRL. CTRL+letter combinations and function keys (F1 through F12) are usually the best choices for shortcut keys.
Some keyboards also support three new keys: the Application key and the two Windows keys. The primary use for the Application key is to display the shortcut menu for the current selection (the same as pressing SHIFT+F10). You may also use it with modifier keys for program-specific functions. Pressing either of the Windows keys—left or right—displays the Start menu. These keys are also used by the system as modifiers for system-specific functions.