Here's our Windows XP Tip for.. May 16, 2007
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If you use a program repeatedly, you might want to assign a hot key to it.However, you need to be aware that many of these keys are already assigned. If you reassign them, you'll lose the original function. The best approach is to use whatever Ctrl-Alt key combination Windows suggests.

Let's suppose you would like to open Notepad using Ctrl-Alt-N. First place a shortcut to Notepad on your desktop. Now right-click the shortcut and choose Properties. When the Properties dialog box opens, click the Shortcut tab. Next click the Shortcut Key entry box and type N (Windows adds Ctrl-Alt automatically) to assign the key to Word. Click OK. to close the dialog box and record your changes. Now when you press Ctrl-Alt-N, Notepad opens.