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Multiple selection on a computer


Multiple selection is used to apply an action on several items at once, starting with selecting them.

There are few ways to proceed depending on the context :

With checkboxes

If you see a list where you can find a checkbox for each item, you can simply proceed this way.

  1. Check each item you want.
  2. Click on a button that represents the action you want to apply.



We can often see this approach in webmails such as gmail where we can delete many emails at once.

With the mouse

In most cases, the following method is also possible.

  1. Click in the empty, close to many elements you want to select and hold down your mouse button.
  2. While you hold your click, move the mouse on the elements you want to select.
  3. Release the mouse button!


With the keyboard

(see also keyboard to understand keyboard keys)

CTRL + Click : If you hold down CTRL key while you click on items, each item will gain a color border, which indicates that it is selected. Then you only need to release the CTRL key and apply the action you want on the selected items. That works for example to delete many files at the same time.

Shift + Click : This method works in the same way than the preceeding one with one exception, it allows you to select two items and everything that lies between the two at once.

CTRL + A : This method only involves the keyboard. If you hold down the CTRL key and you press A, everything will be selected on the screen. For example, if you were looking a email folder, all emails will be select in that folder.