Hardware

Quickly zoom in and out using the mouse wheel

You probably use your mouse wheel to roll through Word text or Excel data. But you can also use it to zoom in and out -- once you know the trick.

Today's mice come with a center wheel between the two buttons. If you haven't explored it yet, you're in for a treat. Rolling the wheel up and down will usually move the current content up and down, respectively. So it's an easy way to scroll up and down through Word text or Excel data.

The wheel also provides a quick alternative to the Zoom control. (Interesting, there's no keyboard shortcut for accessing the Zoom control.) To zoom in and out using the mouse, hold down the [Ctrl] key while you turn the mouse wheel. Each click, up or down, increases or decreases the zoom factor by 10%.

About

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

70 comments
RayBeckerman
RayBeckerman

Nice, Susan. Very helpful. Usually what happens with me (and what did happen here) is that I accidentally zoomed out, and couldn't remember how to use the mouse to zoom back in.... but you took care of that for me :)

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

didn't know about this and some other mouse wheel functions, I now begin to wonder if they all know about the default copy and paste commands of ctrl + C to copy what's highlighted, and ctrl + V to paste it where you want it to go. Come on, anyone this is news for, please confess.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Firstly, without harping on Susan for offering this most basic computing tip, I can't believe it had today's date on it?! You mean to tell me that there are people who actually don't know about mouse wheel controls? I am flabbergasted to hear it amongst a forum of seasoned IT professionals. You can also navigate backwards and forward in Explorer or Internet Explorer by holding SHIFT and scrolling the wheel to move back and forth, through the file paths or web pages you've recently used. If you've just copied a file from you Documents folder (or any other folder for that matter) and you want to scroll back through your navigation path to copy it to your C: drive (or anywhere else you have come from to get there) again just use SHIFT and scroll the wheel it will scroll through the navigation path you used to get to the Documents folder. Sorry for seeming so shocked, I honestly thought it was computing 101. My mum (a brand new user) knows this trick and she only just learned how to email a photo. How did you teach your staff efficient computing techniques and time saving tips??

Jacky Howe
Jacky Howe

an old dog new tricks. My 3 year old grandaughter showed me that one. LOL Edit: She came over for a visit and I was sitting at a Vista System. She wanted a nurse and proceeded to roll the scroll button and had her little hand on Ctrl. The Icons were expanding and contracting. Had me stumped for a minute. ;)

jimmy_hukom
jimmy_hukom

Thanks, Susan! Simple but very useful!

nwilt
nwilt

My God!!! I don't believe there are actually IT people out there who didn't already know this. Where do these people train? At kindergarten??

jdclyde
jdclyde

quick, simple, right to the point. I feel lost when I sit down at a computer that doesn't have the wheel. I mostly used it for launching new tabs by pressing it in.

santeewelding
santeewelding

I know positively Everything, now! Thank you. Eat your heart out, Ernest.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

WOW, it does work. Neato! That makes things easier, thanks Ernest! Feel better? :D

ssharkins
ssharkins

There's nothing new, not even about Office 2007. If you're looking for stuff you don't know, chances are you'll find a few helpful tips here. If you're looking for stuff nobody's ever seen before, this isn't the place -- that place doesn't exist. As for the scroll wheel -- wow... I certainly didn't see this discussion coming. I still run across people who don't use their scroll wheel -- even tech savy folks. A lot of people use it, some even use it alot, until they open an Office file -- they simply don't realize it works there too. Here's how I choose tips: If something annoys me, it probably annoys you; if I think something is cool, you probably will too; if I help a reader or user, this crowd usually benefits as well. One of our latest surveys shows that this blog draws a versified crowd -- from industry authorities to people who don't know what VBA is. Interestingly, it's the easiest tips that receive the biggest thanks from the most readers. Anything that helps people get their work done a little faster or a little easier is an Okay tip with me.

jdclyde
jdclyde

of formal training vs figure it out as you go, I do not recall EVER hearing these in any of my computer classes. Maybe they were also ignorant enough to think that just because something is simple, that "everyone" know it? "Assume nothing".

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I just finishe dpostign to a thread where people wonder why jos are going overseas. Microsoft moved its development operations to Canada so they can find more skilled labour, stating a shortage in the USA and new laws that restrict them hiring elsewhere. One poster felt that people in India were all traiing in the USA, certainly some do but not all or even most of them. He seemed to feel that the US educational system for iT was about the best, and now we see reality. The most fundamental user efficiency tip and there are seasoned professionals who had no idea. Before they jump in and gang stomp me for speakgin my mind again, let me just say that their knowledge of MS servers and other related MS systems trumps mine by light years, I was an MCNE and that's a prety dead ticket these days. I suppose that also shows that mouse wheel control is not exactly rocket science or some new fandangled trick, it's been that way as long as mouse wheels have been around.

jdclyde
jdclyde

that they can't believe something you don't know, that is different, right? How sad and pathetic, of you.

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

the basic two button mouse and not the scroll mouse - it seems clear they haven't played any new major games or they'd have found out about there as well. I've been using the scroll on the mouse for several years - since they first came out, much easier than using the side bar, just place in the app (where you usually are anyway) and roll the scroll ball.

santeewelding
santeewelding

The only standard of IT you apparently know is from kindergarten. Are you saying all these people, including me, don't know their ass from their elbow about anything that matters?

santeewelding
santeewelding

The mouse has turned into a thing of wonder for me.

ssharkins
ssharkins

Well, now that you know everything, I guess my work here is done. ;)

nwilt
nwilt

Don't you think? Who would have thought such an itsy bitsy tip would cause such raving & ranting. Anyway I still stand by my first comments. There are such a lot of dumb idiots out there, don't you reckon?

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

[i]"Your ignorance via assumption As it has been shown by several people that they had never heard of this use before, proving that your assumption was wrong. Just because many know it doesn't mean everyone knows it. Once again, after painting yourself into the corner, you come out smelling like the crap you are full of. And yes, this was a discussion giving tips, and yes, you came into it. Why? To try to prove you are better than everyone else because you knew this? To look down your nose at people that didn't? Why? "[/i] Sentiments from JD.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I never heard it from a computer class either, its one of those things you just learn from the job. This is why I thought it was shocking that so many seasoned professionals, with many years of experience wouldn't know. I'm not saying you are not clever at what you do, I wouldn't even begin to suggest I know more about computing than ANYONE here, this seemed so fundamental though. We get that here a lot too, and to be prejudiced, it is usually Orientals here that don't see the simplest solutions, I find. They are trained from a very young age to work and study, they READ their education, they STUDY their facts. It results in a very limited abliity to think outside the box and no chance of discovering things for themselves. Unless that specific lesson was written, where they will remember it without issue, it is lost in the wind. It goes for driving, "keep your eyes one the road", means they will NOT look at a mirror or out a side window, just tunnel vision forwad often with other windows blanked out with shades, the seven dwarves etc. It creates so much frustration for other drivers though, not to mention endless accidents. They are not stupid by any means, but have a much more studious and less explorative mindset, just as we see most of the time in IT too.

nwilt
nwilt

You certainly do come from the 'Land of Confusion'

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I think that's where I learned to use the scroll wheel to zoom in and out when looking through the scope, circa 2000?

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

But it's like encountering a seasoned professional driver who uses a key to unlock the doors without realizing the button on their key fob does it too.

nwilt
nwilt

I have observed over the years that the standard of training, and indeed the attitude of younger people these days is generally pretty appalling.Not everyone, of course, but a fairly hefty percentage.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You guys are surely yanking someone's chain and being sarcastic, as this is such a fundamental shorcut.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I just think it's funny that I offered my comments that I was shocked it was seen as new info and stated that people here knew WAAAAY more than I do so I expected they would know this too. Of course, to JDClyde who has a bone to pick with anything I say or do, that means I am looking down on people. 'kin freakshow! What a patient! :D Oh well, it IS a great tip, I just didn't realize it was unknown to so many experienced techs.

jdclyde
jdclyde

Maybe if you tell me you were right a few dozen more times even you might believe it? As for the Kindergarden comment, I know it is hard for you to grasp the concept, but if you look, you will see that I DID reply to him. How will the little man try to twist THAT so that he can pretend for himself and everyone else on the playground that HE IS RIGHT? LOL. To damn funny. Now, are you replying to me, or at me, trying to impress your peers? Go back to typing louder.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

If anyone's crying, it's you. I was right, proved myself right, am still right and you were way off base, are still way off base and will always be off base. If you feel otherwise let's revisit shall we? Or is it too much for you to accept a reality that you don't have any values or standards, which you chastise me for. You called me out on my comments, saying that it was looking down on peers. However, your values and standards are nonexistent. Another poster actually DID call everyone stupid for not knowing, referring to their training at a Kindergarten level. To that you have no comment. No values, no consistency in your opinion. Another poster, also said he was shocked that people didn't know this yet. Again, you were silent, no comment,no values, no consistency in your opinion. The TR staff member who initiated the thread also found it surprising that people were new to this feature. Again, you were silent, no comment, no values, no consistency of opinion. this is all fact, right here in black and white, an reiterated and quoted in my past post. To that PROOF that you are just a whiny little tosser with no life, and no core values to be found, you say I am being a cry baby? What kind of imagination does it take to stretch that far? You are SO completely off base, out of order and incorrect in your comments that once again ANYONE can see it. I did NOT say that everyone else thinks so, that everyone else says... or anything of the sort, which is the third party reference you are trying to accuse me of. It's in black and white, are you now suggesting that people here are below you and can't read your BS words for themselves? Do you always look down your nose at peers here as if they cant' read for themselves? Obviously it is yourself that cannot comprehend what he reads, is an utter hypocrite and you show absolutely NO core values or consistency in your comments. You JD have shown your true colours, and they make you look pretty damn ignorant. People can see that for themselves by simply reading the thread, no need for me to reference them in the third party as you so suggest, again wrongly. It's funny how you are quick to defend your intelligence and American pride, however the only real comprehension issues here always seem to be from Americans like yourself who don't read but post with haste and complete misunderstanding, where others understand exactly what I am saying. The dumbest part is that you feel people are stupid enough that if you twist and turn enough times, they won't see your BS either. Unfortunately most of us can comprehend what we read, not everyone in the world is as dumb and blind to reality as yourself, in fact I think few actually are.

jdclyde
jdclyde

wow, you can type naughty words, I am so not impressed. You pull the sad old "everyone knows" crap that you chastise others for, how sad. Doesn't make you right or me wrong. Need a crying towel?

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I wasn't wrong to begin with, you just took the brown acid or something and are now looking for a way to back peddle into being correct. Think about your weak attempt at argument to start: You think I am condemning techs and looking down my nose at them for not knowing what I thought was common knowledge for anyone SORTA politically savvy. THAT'S your complaint? Pathetic! To prove such a complaint false and misguided: I explained how I discovered it and that I THOUGHT it would have been common knowledge, even apologizing for sounding shocked that it was news tro seasoned techs. That is NOT looking down my nose at anyone. [i]" I am flabbergasted to hear it amongst a forum of seasoned IT professionals."[/i] You're right, JD, [i]"Seasoned IT professionals"[/i], that's really putting them in their place isn't t. Way to look down my nose at people I openly recognize as mroe qualified than myself! [i]"Sorry for seeming so shocked, I honestly thought it was computing 101."[/i] Oh there it is again! Belittling the inexperienced!! Just more looking down my nose at people I think are below me on the computing ladder! I then showed you how other people, including the editor who posted similar comments, were equally shocked, however that isn't relevant to you, just what I have to say of course as you are seemingly infatuated with my every word (even though you can't read). Comments from others yuo didn't even bat an eye at: [i]"Excusa me, are you saying there are tech people who don't know this already? Oi vey. "[/i] Yeah, no sounding surprised there. [i]"My God!!! I don't believe there are actually IT people out there who didn't already know this. [b]Where do these people train? At kindergarten?? [/i][/b] Again just nothing but recognition of talented people knowing common tasks things. And you are on at ME for looking down my nose at people? Yes, you are completely wrong in your baseless attacks. So as for your little panty twist getting into a little hissy fit over what I'VE said, get bent, go f-k yourself, learn how to read before you start your unqualified attacks on people. You didn't even think it was that bad yourself, you just decided you would take it the wrong, way, assume I said something in a fashion I didn't as you are hell bent on doing so all the time with me. Your game is old, it's childish, it's boring and frankly you were just plain WRONG and aren't man enough to realize it. Do you REALLY think other people don't see your BS for what it is? Do you REALLY think people see you as correct and proving me wrong? Get a life, loser.

jdclyde
jdclyde

it won't make you right.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You do realize she was the OP, right? So what, you can throw out your bullsh1t and lies towards me but it doesn't apply to others? Clever game, one day you'll win at it...lol, no you won't. What a born loser, how do you even look at yourself each morning and still find the wherewithal to get dressed? This has NOTHING to do with looking down on people, if you had learned how to read instead of wanking all day, you'd be able to see where I explained that I didn't know half of what these techs do and that's why I was so surprised to find this wasn't common knowledge. I suppose in your little head that consitutes looking down on people, what a dummy! Then when your own words are offered to people with similar opinions, you see it as looking down on them too. What a hypocrite! You are a real f'kin nutter, not a hint of a brain to he found in that gaping hole of hypocrisy. The more you comment, the dumber you look and it has just been getting worse and worse and worse until, well...you look as mentally incapable of thought as you do here today. Give up, you are a born loser and did not make a valid point though you continue, and WILL continue, to try for days. Looking for just SOMETHING that you can backpeddle into to make SOME sort of point (even if irrelevant) or look like you have SOME common sense and weren't just being a mouthy, Yankee tosser, but you will fail as always.

jdclyde
jdclyde

I know how difficult it must have been for you to admit you were wrong to climb up on a stool so you could look down upon others. You are forgiven.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I gave up trying to figure myself out and categorize myself many years ago. I just kept proving myself wrong when I thought I had myself all worked out.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You are SO hell bent on finding some little snippet of ANYTHING where you can rant and tave about how horrific I am to the community that you'll even run amok on something as stupid as this. Why didn't you post your utter BS to Deadly Ernest and ssharkins (the original poster and TR editor) too? They were both quite surprised that people HERE didn't know this either; they both posted as much also, but they are seemingly invisible from your viewpoint. You know that there could be more to your sad life other than just wishing you had lived a fuller one. You go off about painting myself into a corner? It just shocked me (and others) that some people (in a professional IT community) had not heard of this before, how the hell is THAT painting myself into a corner? It's not, wrong application for your BS. If it is so horrible, then why not cry to all involved and sharing similar views, not just me? [i]"And yes, this was a discussion giving tips, and yes, you came into it. Why? To try to prove you are better than everyone else because you knew this? To look down your nose at people that didn't? Why? "[/i] (just another example of your horribly assumptive and purposely incorrect comment to get a little attention?) I posted because I was quite shocked to see such a basic tip offered and people hadn't heard of it before, [b]and I wasn't alone in saying so.[/b] You just grab a little hatched thread and run with it like the village idiot on speed. To look down my nose at people? Yes, I look down my nose at [i]you[/i] every day, I don't need to post in order to make that point though, you sit well below me on the food chain and you know it. What's even sadder is, as a bottome feeder, you feel your only hope of being successful is to try attacking me, illustrating that even you know you are at the bottom of the food chain. __________________________________ [i]"There's nothing new, not even about Office 2007"[/i] [i]As for the scroll wheel -- wow... I certainly didn't see this discussion coming. I still run across people who don't use their scroll wheel -- even tech savy folks[/i] [i]With the number of experienced IT techs saying they didn't know about this and some other mouse wheel functions, I now begin to wonder if they all know about the default copy and paste commands [/i] Now go and sling your lies at them too. _________________________ You didn't bitch and whine like an infant to these posters, which proves your only motive is to harp in me without justification, what a BABY! I even apologized to readers for sounding shocked. Of course with your proven inability to comprehend what you read, it flew right over your head. You replied with BS and flames about coming from both side of the tracks, yad yad yada, blah blah blah, waaaaah waaaah waaaaah. YOU instigated an argument and detracted from the OP, I was the one who added to the OP instead, so don't even try your high and mighty garbage on me. You [i]are[/i] nothing, [i]do[/i] nothing and [i]mean[/i] nothing to the world, just an instigificant existence/skid mark to fade away and be forgotten. I bothers you so you have to lie and make crap up to seem like you have hope or a place.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Har Har, Tee Hee, Guffaw, LOL, ROFLMAO (well not really) and all that stuff

jdclyde
jdclyde

As it has been shown by several people that they had never heard of this use before, proving that your assumption was wrong. Just because many know it doesn't mean everyone knows it. Once again, after painting yourself into the corner, you come out smelling like the crap you are full of. And yes, this was a discussion giving tips, and yes, you came into it. Why? To try to prove you are better than everyone else because you knew this? To look down your nose at people that didn't? Why?

santeewelding
santeewelding

An experienced Oz tech. I continue to learn new things about you.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

"Don't want anyone telling you anything, yet you came to them to listen" Did I ? Again with your mind reading tricks. "The best way to learn is having like minded people get together and say "hey, this is cool, check this out!" Treu but as this was something so elementary, I see I am not teh only one who assumed it's common knowledge amongst the experienced peer base here. I'm not saying anyone is dumb, I am just shocked as hell that this feature, which I think even TR wrote about many years ago, remains unknown to so many experienced techs, mouse wheels are not new or anything.

jdclyde
jdclyde

Don't want anyone telling you anything, yet you came to them to listen..... You counterdict yourself. As for something three times, not from the same person, just not to ASSUME people have already heard something from someone else. The best way to learn is having like minded people get together and say "hey, this is cool, check this out!"

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

That comes without any thought at all. most threads don't warrant the time to edit or spell check posts, I'm a crappy typist and I just can't be bothered to check unless it is an important or creative thread. Obviously you understand the difference between spelling mistakes and typos/orphaned letters etc.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I'd rather people didn't bother telling me anything at all, if I have a question, I'll ask. I have no problem seeking advice from soemoen i know is credible and worthy of offering advice. As for telling me how oto do something though, it's best to just STFU and I'll get on with my own work and figure it out myself. If I need help I'll ask. Instruction and classes make me puke, always lead by some textbook knob who seems to feel there is only one way to do things. I prefer more creative personalities around me, poeple who are sharp and astute enough to figure things out for themselves and share real world experience not technical copy. I defintiely don't want to hear something three times, I'll hear people the first time, If I don't follow it it's because I chose to do things differently.

jdclyde
jdclyde

I would rather hear something three times, than have someone assume I know it and never tell me at all. If one person learned something "new", cool.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

he'll wank about it for days if you don't just drop it and let him feel he is one up on you .

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

a scroll bar as the default it works the scroll, when it has a zoom as default it works the zoom. And in most apps you can hit a certain key combo and it switches from the scroll to the zoom.

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