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Disabling the pesky CTRL-ENTER shortcut

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Ever hit CTRL-ENTER by mistake while composing an email in Outlook and wondered what the heck happened? Well, here's the answer. CTRL-ENTER is the not-so-helpful shortcut key for 'Send my email immediately even though I've not yet finished typing it'. Which explains why your email instantly disappears into the cyber-ether whenever your press these two keys simultaneously. And which, of course, is helpful if you want to send your email at that precise moment in time, but a great big pain in the elbow if you don't.

Fortunately, a solution is at hand. You can disable CTRL-ENTER in Word by adding the following registry keys:

Key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\DisabledShortcutKeysCheckBoxes
String Value: CtrlEnter
Value Data: 13,8

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Word\DisabledShortcutKeysCheckBoxes
String Value: CtrlEnter
Value Data: 13,8

Now enjoy!

[Step by step instructions:

  1. Start, Run, type Regedit press OK
  2. Navigate through the folder tree to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\
  3. Go to Edit menu, select New, then Key
  4. Type DisabledShortcutKeysCheckBoxes
  5. Select the new key folder you just created
  6. Go to Edit menu, select New, then String Value
  7. Type CtrlEnter
  8. Double click on the new String Value you created and enter 13,8 in the Value Data field.
  9. Repeat steps 2 to 8 for folder HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Word\11.0\Outlook\
  10. Close the Registry Editor and restart Outlook for the changes to take effect]
Comments
  • Or just turn on spellcheck before sending. should be on in most cases anyway.

  • Switch on spell check? Yes, that's a good tip but only if your spelling or typing is so bad that you always make mistakes! Or I guess you could create a standard email template that contains a typo in the first line so your spellcheck always catches a rogue CTRL-ENTER. But that seems like an odd work-around to solve such a common problem. I think disabling CTRL-ENTER or using my 1 minute delay trick at http://blogs.technet.com/usefultechnology/archive/2005/07/01/407162.aspx are safer solutions. But, beware! Disabling CTRL-ENTER as in this tip does stop you adding Page Breaks using this shortcut while working in Word. After CTRL-ENTER is disabled you have to use Word's Insert menu to add page breaks. This can be time-consuming in a long document so think about this before deploying this registry change.

  • I can NOT thank-you enough for this "patch" -- my solution was to NEVER address the email until I was finished with creating the document.

    Only, when I was pleased -- would I address before sending! I obvoiusly, like your solution better!

  • *sigh* I reposted this solution -- but my readers had a problem. THEY were not using the Office Policies and did NOT have this registry entry!

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\

    The average user will only have:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\

    And will need to create ALL THREE OF THESE!
    Office\11.0\Outlook\

  • I've previously posted about Outlook's annoying Ctrl-Enter shortcut which instantly sends your email,...