Macintosh Startup Key Combinations

This document is loosely based on Charles Poynton's startup key combinations document which has since disappeared from his web site.

A Mac does several checks when it is first powered on; one of the first things it does is scan the keyboard bus (ADB) for any signals. Certain keys will cause various actions to be taken. Note: command (cmd) is the same as the Apple key; option (opt) is the same as the alt key.

The following should be held down when the computer is first powered up to take effect:

The following should be held down just before the happy Mac first appears to take effect:

The following should be held down immediately after the "icon parade" finishes to take effect:

For shortcuts to use in the Finder once the Mac is booted, check out the Finder Shortcuts file in the Help menu.

The following are some other useful shortcuts/undocumented combos:

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Last Modified on 28 January 2003
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