Navigate Slack with your keyboard

If you use your keyboard to get around, we have shortcuts to help you navigate quickly from one area in Slack to another.

Tip: Learn more about using Slack with a screen reader.

Keyboard shortcuts overview

To view a list of all available keyboard shortcuts, press / (Mac) or Ctrl / (Windows/Linux) from Slack on your desktop, or visit Slack keyboard shortcuts and commands.

Navigation shortcuts

Use the keyboard shortcuts below to navigate between elements from the Slack desktop app or Slack in a browser. You’ll know an element is in focus when it’s surrounded by a blue outline.

Action Desktop app shortcut Browser shortcut
Move focus between items in a list, e.g. messages, channels, etc. or * or *

Move focus to the next section



Move focus to the previous section

Shift F6 

Ctrl ShiftF6

Move up or down

Page up or Page down

Page up or Page down

Move to the oldest message



Move to the most recent message



*If using a screen reader on Windows, you may need to toggle the virtual cursor off so that shortcuts provided by your screen reader don’t collide with Slack shortcuts.

Note: If you don’t have a menu open and you’re not typing a message, pressing Esc marks messages as read. 

Open a conversation

Follow the steps below to open a channel or direct message (DM):

  1. Press ⌘ K (Mac) or Ctrl K (Windows/Linux).
  2. Type the name of a channel or person in the search field.
  3. Press Enter to open the conversation.

Tip: To quickly send a new message, press N (Mac) or Ctrl N (Windows/Linux).

Read messages in a conversation

Move focus to the empty message field and press ↑ to start navigating between individual messages. Then use any of these keys:

  • Page up or Page down to move up or down.
  • Home to go to the oldest message.
  • End to go to the most recent message.
  • Space bar to scroll through messages.
  • Fn Shift (Mac) or Shift Page up (Windows/Linux) to scroll to the start of the previous day’s messages.
  • Fn Shift (Mac) or Shift Page down (Windows/Linux) to scroll to the start of the next day’s messages.

Tip: Press F6 to start navigating between messages in channels that you don’t have permission to post in.


Interact with messages in a conversation

  1. When focused on the empty message input field, press to start navigating between individual messages.
  2. When focused on a message, press Tab to scroll through links, attachments, etc. or use contextual one-key shortcuts to quickly take actions (such as editing, replying or sharing). 


Navigate message threads

  1. When focused on the empty message input field, press ↑ or ↓ to choose a message to view.
  2. Press → to open the thread. Then use these keys to get around:

    Page up or Page down to move up or down.
    Home to get to the original message.
    End to move focus to the message input field and reply.

Navigate unread messages

Press Shift A (Mac) or Ctrl Shift A (Windows/Linux) to open the All unread view, then use these keys to review your unread messages:

  • or to move between individual messages.
  • Option Click (Mac) or Alt Click (Windows/Linux) to mark a single message as unread.
  • or to expand or collapse a group of messages.
  • Esc to mark a group of messages as unread.


Set your ↑ up arrow key preference

By default, pressing the up arrow key from an empty message field will move focus to the last message in a conversation. You can adjust your preferences to have this keyboard shortcut edit the last message that you sent instead:

  1. From your desktop, click on your profile picture in the top right and select Preferences from the menu. Or press , (Mac) or Ctrl , (Windows/Linux) to open Preferences
  2. Select Accessibility.
  3. Under Keyboard, select an option.

With either option, you can press (Mac) or Ctrl (Windows/Linux) to edit your last message in the conversation that you’re viewing.