The difference between Win + D and Win + M commands

Experienced Windows users will know there’s two commands to minimise all windows

  • Win + D (show desktop)
  • Win + M (minimise)

They may appear to be the same – but they are very slightly different.

Here’s 3 ways Win + D (show desktop) and Win + M (minimise) are different.

1. Win + D (show desktop) allows you to toggle between the desktop and a window

When you press Win + D (show desktop) all windows are minimised – if you press it again the windows will be restored.

With Win + M (minimise) the windows will NOT be restored.

2. Win + M (minimise) will only work if the application is designed to

When you press Win + M (minimise) a special message, WM_MINIMIZE, is given to all open windows.

Application developers can choose how their applications respond to this – many will choose to minimise – but may not if the application needs to stay on screen. For example – a toolbar that “snaps” to the top of the screen.

With Win + D (show desktop) all windows will always be minimised.

3. Win + D (show desktop) is a one-hand command

If you’re looking to maximise your efficiency – consider this – Win + D (show desktop) can be used with one hand. No need to move your hand away from the mouse.