Choose which text Narrator reads aloud

Narrator reads aloud the text that appears on your screen and describes your desktop and any windows you have open. You can also have it read aloud what you type, as well as announce events that happen on the screen (such as dialog boxes that appear).

Narrator is not available in all languages, so if the steps below do not work, Narrator is not available for your language.

To choose the text Narrator always reads

  1. Open Narrator by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking All Programs, clicking Accessories, clicking Ease of Access, and then clicking Narrator.

  2. Under Main Narrator Settings box, do one or more of the following:

    • To hear what you type, select the Echo User's Keystrokes check box.

    • To hear background events, such as notifications, select the Announce System Messages check box.

    • To hear an announcement when the screen scrolls, select the Announce Scroll Notifications check box.

To choose specific items for Narrator to read

  1. Open Narrator by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking All Programs, clicking Accessories, clicking Ease of Access, and then clicking Narrator.

  2. Use the keyboard shortcuts in the following table to specify which text you want Narrator to read.

    Use this keyboard shortcut To do this
    Use this keyboard shortcut

    CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER

    To do this

    Get information about the current item

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR

    To do this

    Read the entire selected window

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    CTRL+ALT+SPACEBAR

    To do this

    Read the selected window layout

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+CTRL+G

    To do this

    Read a description of the non-dependent elements adjacent to the currently selected element

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    CTRL

    To do this

    Stop Narrator from reading text

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+Q

    To do this

    Move the cursor backward to the beginning of any preceding text that has different formatting. For example, the cursor moves from a bold word to the beginning of a non-bold word that precedes it.

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+W

    To do this

    Move the cursor to the beginning of any text that follows it that has different formatting. For example, the cursor moves from a bold word to the beginning of a non-bold word that follows it.

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+E

    To do this

    Move the cursor back to the beginning of any text that has the same formatting. For example, the cursor moves from the middle of a bold word to the beginning of that word.

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+R

    To do this

    Move the cursor to the end of any text that has the same formatting. For example, the cursor moves from the middle of a bold word to the end of that word.

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F2

    To do this

    Select all of the text that has the same formatting as the character at the cursor

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F3

    To do this

    Read the current character

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F4

    To do this

    Read the current word

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F5

    To do this

    Read the current line

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F6

    To do this

    Read the current paragraph

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F7

    To do this

    Read the current page

    Use this keyboard shortcut

    INSERT+F8

    To do this

    Read the current document