Windows – Find out what program is using a hotkey

hotkeyskeyboard shortcutswindowswindows 10

I can't register a hotkey with a program because "other programs are using it" In this case "Print Screen" and "Ctrl + Print Screen" and every other combination of Shift, Alt, Ctrl, + print-screen.

How can I tell what hotkeys are in use and what programs are using them?

I've seen similar questions:

And they suggest using a program called Hotkey Explorer but that program doens't run correctly on my system (Windows 10 Ent x64).. in fact here is a warning: DO NOT RUN THIS PROGRAM ON WINDOWS 10. What a nightmare.

Also I don't have Dropbox installed (other questions said it might use the print-screen buttons)

Best Answer

Sorry I can't suggest an alternative to Hotkey Explorer for Windows 8 or 10. It's a godsend on Windows 7.

I can only offer you the most primitive way of handling this problem. First, close all your running programs (including stuff in the system tray), one by one. Make notice of what you close and every time (or every once in a while) test if your program (is it Greenshot?) can now use that hotkey.

If everything is closed but the problem persists, open the Processes tab in the Task Manager (or better yet, download the Sysinternals Process Explorer). Sort processes by user and start killing user (not system) processes one by one. Again, keep checking if the hotkey becomes available. Sooner or later you should find the offending process. In my case, CSRHarmonySkypePlugin.exe (part of CSR Harmony drivers for a CSR Bluetooth 4.0 USB dongle) was grabbing Ctrl+Alt+Up and Down and a few others - with no UI to configure that or turn off!

This kind of problem is extremely annoying. Happy hunting!