How to find open apps with the Window Walker tool in Windows 10 PowerToys

Learn how to use the Window Walker tool to search for and locate open windows, based on keyword.

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Image: Microsoft

Windows offers you a few ways to view all open apps. You can press Alt+Tab to view and cycle through your open windows. You can press Win+Tab to see your open windows and also navigate the Timeline. But, maybe you often have a lot of open windows and applications and need to quickly find a specific one--you can do that with the Window Walker tool.

Available in the latest version of PowerToys for Windows 10, Window Walker presents a search field that pops up when you press Ctrl+Win. Just type a specific word or phrase in the search field, and Window Walker shows you all open windows related to your search term. Here's how it works.

SEE: Cheat sheet: Windows 10 PowerToys (free PDF) (TechRepublic) 

First, make sure you're running the latest version of Windows 10 PowerToys. If you've already installed PowerToys, open the app from the System Tray or Start menu. Scroll down the General Settings screen and click the button to Check For Updates. You're then taken to the PowerToys GitHub page pointing to the latest update. If you don't have PowerToys, then just go directly to the GitHub releases page. Download and install the MSI file for the latest version. Open the PowerToys program and make sure the switch is turned on for Window Walker (Figure A).

Figure A

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Now open several applications. Let's say you're looking for a specific application and don't want to have to cycle through all the open windows. Press Ctrl+Win. The Window Walker search field pops up with the message: "Search for running processes or windows."

Type the name of an open application or window. You can type all or part of the program, such as word for Microsoft Word, power for PowerPoint, teams for Microsoft Teams, or chrome for Google Chrome. You can also type a more generic term, such as microsoft, to see all programs with Microsoft in the name. A list of associated applications appears. Double-click the application window you wish to open (Figure B).

Figure B

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You can also search by any word in the name of an open document, file, or web page. For example, if the LinkedIn website is open in Chrome or another browser, just type linkedin in the Window Walker search field and then double-click the search result to view the page (Figure C).

Figure C

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Finally, if you're not sure of the exact name of the application or file you want, type the first letter. Windows Walker displays all open applications with that letter in the name or title. Keep typing until you see the application you want and then double-click it to open it (Figure D).

Figure D

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