Software & Apps Windows What Is Aero Shake and How Do I Use It? Bring a single window to the forefront in Windows by Keith Ward Writer Keith Ward is a former Lifewire writer with over 25 years' experience writing about Microsoft products and creating and Windows tutorials. our editorial process LinkedIn Keith Ward Updated on December 26, 2019 Windows The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide Tweet Share Email There are tons of little tricks in Windows including a handy companion to the show desktop feature called Aero Shake, which turns a cluttered desktop into a model of organization. Instructions in this article apply to Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and 7. What Is Aero Shake? First introduced with the Windows 7 operating system and available on all versions of the operating system since then, Aero Shake minimizes all open windows on your desktop except one. As the feature's name implies, the one you want to remain visible is the window you "shake." Get Shakin' Aero Shake is easy to use: grab the window you want to isolate by selecting its title bar at the top of the window, which usually has a red "X" in the upper right corner. Grab it by clicking and holding the left mouse button. Shake the mouse back and forth quickly, while continuing to hold down the button. After a few quick shakes, all the other open windows on your desktop minimize to the taskbar where they are available to use when you're ready to reintroduce chaos to your newfound order. To bring those windows up again and restore your desktop, repeat the same shake routine. Aero Shake takes some practice to get used to, but after you do it a few times, you'll get the hang of it. The secret is not to move the shaken window too far across the desktop lest you trigger a hot corner feature like the one that occurs when you touch the upper right corner of your desktop with a program window to maximize it. If you do something like that, your shaking is for naught. Why Use Aero Shake If you are wondering why you'd use such a feature, the answer is simple. Sometimes you need to focus on a single window when you have tons of program windows open. Although you could go through each window on your desktop and close or minimize it, that's not efficient. As an alternative, you could select Show Desktop and then reopen the window you want, but that takes longer than a little shake of your mouse. Disabling Aero Shake (Windows 10 only) Even if Aero Shake seems like a feature that would (or does) annoy the heck out of you, there's no easy way for the casual Windows user to dismantle it. The only way to turn it off it is to dive deep into a section of Windows reserved for power users known as the registry. The registry isn't something you should mess around with unless you're an experienced user. If that's you, however, see the steps below on how to disable it. Before you start any tweaking in the registry, back it up. In the Search bar, begin entering regedit and select Registry Editor when it appears in the search results. Under the registry hive HKEY_CURRENT_USER go to \SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\ Advanced. Right-click on Advanced and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value to create a new entry. Name the new DWORD exactly (no spaces) DisallowShaking. Double-click the new DWORD. This will open up the value. Under Value data, change it from a 0 to 1. Select OK. This will immediately disable the Aero Shake feature. Bonus Tips If Aero Shake feels like a handy trick you'd like to use, there are a few others worth knowing about that similarly control open windows and their appearance, such as the upper right corner trick to automatically maximize a window. Another hot corner is in the lower right of your desktop. Unfortunately, these hot corners do not work in Windows 8 because Microsoft added different functionality to that version of Windows. However, when you drag a window to the lower right corner in Windows 7 or Windows 10, it automatically snaps to exactly half of your screen on the right side. Drag a window to the lower left side to snap it to the left half of your display. Aero Shake and other tricks for manipulating your open program windows aren't for everyone, but if you need an efficient way to deal with all the various programs you use in a day they can help.