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Helpful Find/Change Shortcuts

A few posts ago, I showed you a great new feature found in the Find/Change dialog box which was the ability to find text in both forward and backward directions which is a great time saver when working in InCopy. This past week I was reminded of another really helpful Find/Change keyboard shortcut that I use regularly that many users may not be aware of. When you open the Find/Change dialog box in InCopy or InDesign, you’ll see several buttons along the top of the dialog box for performing a variety of different searches including Text, GREP, and Glyph searches. We won’t go into the details of what each one of these searches does, but if you’d like to know more about performing GREP searches in InCopy, read these previous InCopySecrets posts on Cleaning up Text using GREP and GREP for Editors. InDesign adds another button called Object which allows users to search for objects in a document based on their physical appearance and properties.


Quick Access Using Shortcuts

To get to the Find/Change dialog box, you can use Cmd + F (Mac OS) or Ctrl + F (Windows) at any point to quickly display the dialog box. Once you have it open however, it can become annoying to click through the buttons at the top of the dialog box to access the different features especially if you regularly use a variety of different searches. If however, you use the keyboard shortcuts Cmd + 1, 2, or 3 (Mac OS) or Ctrl + 1, 2, or 3, you will easily cycle through the different search options within the dialog box. If you’re using InDesign, you can add the shortcut Cmd + 4 (Mac OS) or Ctrl + 4 (Windows) to access the fourth button which is the Object search.

It’s important to make sure that your focus is within the Find/Change dialog box because if it’s not, you’ll change the view magnification if you’re currently in Layout view within InCopy. Also, remember that you can use the tab key on your keyboard to navigate the different sections of the Find/Change dialog box and when you highlight a drop-down menu, use the up and down arrow keys on your keyboard to toggle through the options available in the drop-down menu. When you get to a radio button, you can use the arrow keys to toggle between the options.

These are small shortcuts that can make a big difference when you’re trying to work quickly and efficiently in InCopy.

Chad Chelius

Chad Chelius

Chad Chelius is an Adobe Certified Instructor, Author, and Consultant in the Philadelphia area and works with clients to improve their creative workflows using Adobe products. He's also the author of several courses on He specializes in PDF accessibility using Adobe InDesign and is a regular speaker at The InDesign Conference and PePcon.
Chad Chelius

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