Keyboard Shortcuts

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Keyboard Shortcuts

For those who wish to do so, a great deal of your work in DONATION can be done without ever using the mouse. In many cases, once you learn how to do this, it is much faster than using the mouse.


Many keyboard shortcuts available in the program are obvious, because they are displayed alongside the menu items or on the text of buttons on the main window. Some of them are:





Help Contents and Index


Context-sensitive help on the currently active section of the main window


Edit the mostly empty new donation displayed on the main window


Add a new donor on the main window


Save the current donor or donation you are editing (Enter also does that).


Cancel changes on the current donor or donation you are editing


From the main window, bring up a window to find a donor by any part of their name, their member / envelope number, or any part of their phone number, address, or email address


Other keyboard shortcuts are standard shortcuts that work in most Windows programs:





Move from field to field in a form, for example between fields when editing a donor or a donation


Move backwards between fields in a form


"Clicks" the default button of a form, usually called Save, OK, etc. You can see which button is the default button because it has a darker border than the other buttons. Also saves the current donor or donation you are editing, like F10.


"Clicks" the "cancel" button of a form, usually called Cancel, Close etc.


Selects all of the text in a field, so that it can be overtyped, deleted, cut or copied


Copy highlighted text in a field to the Windows clipboard


Cut highlighted text out of a field and put it in the Windows clipboard


Paste text from the Windows clipboard into the field the cursor is in


Entering Amounts


When you are entering amounts, do not enter currency symbols such as the dollar sign, or commas - neither are allowed.


There is no need to enter ".00" after an amount if it has no cents.


Many fields for entering amounts open a Calculator window, if you enter any arithmetic operator (+, -, * or /) in the field, other than a leading minus sign.


Entering Donation Dates


You can type donation dates in directly, using the short date format set in the Windows Control Panel's Regional and Language Options. But you can also click on the calendar button to the right of the date, which pops up a calendar that you can use. Details on keystrokes you can use in the calendar are in Using the Popup Calendar to Enter Dates.


When you first enter a date field, normally its first component (before the first slash or dash) will become selected (highlighted). Pressing the left or right arrow keys or the forward slash key (/) will cycle through the three components of the date field (month, day and year, in whatever order they are displayed on your computer). That can make it easy to just change one of those components, for instance the day of the month. Once it is highlighted, just type what you want to replace it with - there's no need to delete what is there first.


Special keys you can use to change the date in a date field itself (not the popup calendar) are:


T, for Today, sets it to today's date

+ increases it by one day

- (minus/dash) decreases it by one day

M, for Month, goes to the start of the current month, or if you are already on the start of a month, to the start of the previous month

H, for montH, goes to the end of the current month, or if you are already on the end of a month, to the end of the next month

Y, for Year, goes to the start of the current calendar year, or if you are already on the start of a year, to the start of the previous year

R, for yeaR, goes to the end of the current calendar year, or if you are already on the end of a year, to the end of the next year


For all of these, it doesn't matter if you use the capital or small letter. And for + and -, it doesn't matter if you use the keys on the normal keyboard area, or the numeric keypad (if your keyboard has one), and whether or not they are shifted. (So for instance since in most keyboards + is the shifted = key, you can press =, without shifting, and it will still work to increase the date by one day.)


Please note though that in most places in the program, the date you are entering will be restricted to be in the current working year, so some of those keys will stop working if pressing them would take you outside of that year.


Another shortcut you can use is that you can omit the year when you are typing in a date, and it will assume it is for the current calendar year. So for instance if your date format is MM/DD/YYYY, and you want to enter January 31, you can type in just 1/31, and Tab or click out of the field, and it will add the year portion.


If you are doing Fiscal Year Data Entry and Receipting, it will similarly add an appropriate year number within the current fiscal year to years entered as only a month and day. So again if your date format is MM/DD/YYYY, your fiscal year start is June 1, you are in the 2015/2016 fiscal year, and you enter 1/31, it will be changed to 01/31/2016, but if you enter 12/31, it will be changed to 12/31/2015.


Entering Categories and Cheque # / Paid By


The Donation Category field, Donor Category 1 and 2 fields, and Donation Cheque # / Paid By field, all use a method that is often called "autocomplete", as well as allowing you to use the mouse to drop down the list and select from it, or the up and down arrow keys to select values on the list.


Autocomplete allows you to type in a letter or letters that are the initial part of the value you want to select and have the rest appear. For example for the Cheque # / Paid By field, type in "M" for MasterCard or "Mo" for Money Order - use enough to make it distinct. As you type, the first match from the drop-down list that starts with what you have typed will appear, with the part you haven't typed highlighted. When you see the desired value, just go on to the next field, or Save your changes if you are done with your entries.


Entering Fields with Drop-Down Lists of Values that you cannot Type in


There are some fields with drop-down lists, such as the Receipt Style / Location field in the Maintenance Receipt Options window, that you cannot entirely type in.


However, as well as being able to use the mouse to drop down the list and select from it, or the up and down arrow keys to select values on the list, you can also press the first letter of your desired value. That will select the first value on the list that starts with that letter. Pressing the same letter repeatedly will select successive values that start with that letter.


Selecting Donors from the Donor List


For selecting a donor from the Donor List on the main window, you can search by last name or by member / envelope number (if you use them) easily. When the focus is in the Donor List (which is most of the time when you aren't editing a donor or donation), just start typing the last name, and it will immediately go to the donor whose name starts with what you have typed. What you are typing appears below the Donor List, beside the text "Find Name / #:". (This method does not support accented characters, however.)


For searching by member / envelope numbers, just type the number and it will go to the donor with that number. Note: If you have a donor with (say) member / envelope number 1 and another with number 10, then when you type the 1, it will go to the donor with number 1. When you type the 0 (making the displayed number 10) it will then move to the donor with number 10.


You can also move up and down the Donor List with the up and down arrow keys and PgUp / PgDn.


For further details, and a way to find donors by more criteria, or with accented characters near the start of their last name, see Finding a Donor.


Using Underlined Letters in Menus and Buttons


If you see an underlined letter in a main menu option (such as File) or a button (such as Save), that means that you can activate that menu or button by holding down Alt and pressing the letter. For example Alt+F for File, Alt+S for Save.


In drop-down menu options, such as the options on the File menu, when there is an underlined letter, just press that letter when the menu has been displayed and the option will be selected. So, for instance to select One Date Batch Entry from the File menu, press Alt+F for File, then O for One Date Batch Entry. (It doesn't have to be a capital "O".)


If you are using any recent version of Windows, the default setting may be that you cannot see these underlined letters in menus or buttons unless you press and hold the Alt key. So, one option is to first press Alt so that you can see the underlined letters, then you can use the letter. (They work whether you can see them or not, however.)


In Windows 10, search on "Underline", and select what comes up ("Underline access key shortcuts in menus when available"). The window that comes up should be scrolled to the heading "Change how keyboard shortcuts work". Make sure the selector for "Underline access keys when available" there is set to On.


This topic was last edited on Jul 30, 2022