Change the keyboard shortcut for an application

September 1, 2009

My HP laptop has an application on it called HP Health Check — it’s a diagnostic thing. How do I know this? Because whenever I tried to copy formatting in Word using Ctrl+Shift+C the formatting wouldn’t copy and HP Health Check opened!

At first I thought HP Health Check was scheduled to open, then I realized that Ctrl+Shift+C was opening it. No wonder I couldn’t copy formatting!

To add, change or remove a keyboard shortcut from an application:

  1. Right-click on the application’s name, then select Properties.
  2. Go to the Shortcut tab.
  3. In the Shortcut key field, you can:
    • Enter a new key combination if one isn’t associated with this application
    • Change the existing key combination to something that doesn’t conflict with your existing commands
    • Delete the existing key combination (it will then display as None).
  4. Click OK.
Keyboard shortcut for an application

Add, edit or delete a keyboard shortcut for an application

BTW, I put in a call to HP Support before finding this solution. Their answer? “You must have assigned this keyboard combination in Word” (no, it’s a default!), and here’s how to disable the Word keyboard shortcut (but I don’t WANT to do that — it’s a shortcut I use ALL the time as I mentioned in my support call!). How arrogant of them — most other programs do not have a keyboard shortcut assigned to them, let alone one that’s a standard in an Office program.

Update March 2010: Just found another one! This time Ctrl+Shift+S (used to apply a style in Microsoft Word) was associated with the HP System Information application! I wonder how many more of the HP applications on this laptop are also associated with shortcut key combinations… Fortunately, Vista’s Search let me look for HP and I found yet another — Ctrl+Shift+P to open the HP Battery Check. Hopefully that’s the last of them.


  1. Thank you very much! I’ve been trying to change the Ctrl+Shift+P that brings up HP Battery Check for the longest time now! I never knew you could edit an application’s shortcut from the properties menu! :)

  2. […] shortcut to open any Windows software program? It’s very easy to do, but it’s also easy to assign a shortcut that’s used for something else as there’s no message that tells you it’s already assigned to another function (such as […]

  3. This is one of the better instructions for creating Hotkeys. It is concise, straightforward and with graphics.
    I don’t know if this is the right place to ask a question but I can’t find the answer anywhere else or if it is there it is hidden in a lot of garbled language.
    I created a hotkey to connect to my ISP with Ctl+Alt +number 3.
    I later had to make a new connection to the same ISP and therefore a new desktop icon. I forgot or didn’t realize I had to remove the Hotkey to the original icon before I deleted it so I only had the new one.
    When I tried to use Ctl+ alt+number 3 it would not accept it. It will accept any other last letter or number.
    I downloaded a program called shortcutkeys and it listed other Hotkey combinations I use but not the Ctl+Alt+number 3.
    Where is it and what do I do to use it again?
    Mickey Amano

  4. Hi Mickey

    The only place I can think of where it might be stored is in the Registry. However, it’s possible that it is encrypted in there as I did a quick search for ‘Ctrl’ and didn’t find any results for key combinations — you could be hunting for a needle in a haystack!

    Other than that, I have no clues. Sorry. Was Google any help?


  5. Hello Rhonda,
    A funny thing happened as I was writing this reply. Just to make sure I got the Hotkey wording (Ctl+Alt+Num 3) that shows in the Properties of the shortcut icon correctly, I tried to create the Hotkey and lo and behold it’s there.
    It didn’t work earlier today after the computer was started in the morning.
    So somehow problem solved.
    I wish all computer glitches would solve itself this way.
    Thanks for taking an interest in this.


  6. thank you very much!!

  7. Hi, could you help me with the Ctrl+Shift+S issue? I have windows 8.1: how can I disable that damn keyboard shortcut that opens the System Information application? thanks

  8. Hi Silvia

    You may not be able to. If you can using the method above, you’d first have to find out what exe is used for System Information and see if it’s set in its properties. On my Windows 7 PC, it’s %windir%\system32\msinfo32.exe (I found this out by typing System into the search under the Start button).


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