Use This Simple Keyboard Shortcut To Confuse Your Colleagues

Use This Simple Keyboard Shortcut To Confuse Your Colleagues

Keyboard shortcuts are awesome for productivity, but they have more sinister uses too. One simple key combination can turn your screen upside down and wreak havoc in the office.

Just type Control-Alt-Down on a Windows machine to flip the entire screen. This isn’t a universal shortcut — it depends on whether your graphic card supports it — but it works on many modern laptops. Control-Alt-Up restores things to normal.

Is this cruel? Yes. But it can also serve to remind people of a more important keyboard shortcut: Windows-L to lock your system. Do that whenever you step away from the desk and your machine won’t be tampered with.

This post is part of our Evil Week series at Lifehacker, where we look at the dark side of getting things done. Knowing evil means knowing how to beat it, so you can use your sinister powers for good. Want more? Check out our evil week tag page.


  • At work we sometime get kids coming in thinking that they’re hilarious while doing this to every display notebook we sell, only to be disappointed when someone (myself or a colleague) comes along and ruins all their fun. There’s always a deep sigh of disappointment.

    • when i used to work at a store that sold apple products
      being a hater (and the fact that PCs had 3x more margin) i used to go round and make everything inverted colours with a few shortcuts

      it made people think they broke the machine and would walk away towards me in the PC section (mind you i could sell both, i just chosenot to)

  • Grrr i just did it on my dual screen and it wouldn’t correct on the extended monitor. Took me a minute to figure out i had to click my mouse on a window open on that screen.

  • Standard practice at our work when someone leaves their PC unlocked is to send an email broadcast from their account with subjects like “I’m a Belieber!” or confessions of similar nature.

  • That one works on about half the computers at my work, I usually go with switching the mouse buttons or moving the monitor positions so you have to move the mouse to the top left of the left screen to get to the right screen.

    If I’m feeling particularly evil though I’ll change their keyboard settings to a Dvorak layout, that’s always a fun one.

  • Your funny. I have a buddy who works in Excel all the time. He is very good at his job, uses Excel all the time, but he doesn’t know anything beyond his work. This scroll locking idea would drive him wild. He also would not be able to contact IT because they don’t support Excel.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!