Windows – Determining which program trapping which hot key shortcut

keyboard shortcutswindows

I was trying to map a new keyboard shortcut in Visual Studio 2010 and realise it would not register Ctrl-M. Other letters were fine. I opened up Visual Studio 2008 and found it would not recognise the Ctrl-M input either in the shortcut dialog.

While Ctrl-M does not yield any visible system behaviour, my suspicion is still perhaps some program has mapped a OS-wide hotkey shortcut. To my knowledge UltraMon is the only one i know working on this computer that can register hotkeys, but none are assigned there.

I'd like to find out if there is any utility that can query out what are the globally-registered hotkeys by programs in Windows? thanks


Well, this laptop has an Intel integrated video control applet that sports hot key mapping as well, even though Ctrl-M is not assigned. I disabled it to be sure, and it's still not captured in Visual Studio.


I found the offending program – the Bing bar which came with WLE 2011. Woah. But nonetheless having a utility that can eye these out would be usefully quicker.

Best Answer

  • Caution: If you use Win 8 or later, do not use this utility as it will create some trouble - see comments.

    Hotkey Commander displays a list of programs with registered hotkeys in addition to other functionality.

    It's shareware, so if you only need to see what program has registered which key, you can use free utility Hotkey Explorer, download link is on the same page.