Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I am on Windows 8 and I am trying to setup Narrator to be able reading only specified text selections I indicate.

I have two problems:

  1. Narrator speak too much, it says something at each window selection or any other actions. I want to tell it when to speak and leave it silent otherwise.
  2. How ask him to a read a selected text? For example I am trying to read PDF with Adobe and browser page contents with Firefox.
share|improve this question
I never found a way to do this in Windows 7 Narrator anyway. I'm not sure if Windows 8 improved on it... –  Mufasa Oct 28 '12 at 16:22
blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/02/14/… this should help. –  Sumeet Pujari Oct 29 '12 at 0:36

2 Answers 2

It seems like narrator will sometimes read selected text just by selecting it with the mouse. If it doesn't, I try clicking somewhere inside the selected text, which sometimes works. If that doesn't work I try selecting the text again and clicking somewhere outside of the selection.

My current solution:

Within Narrator Settings >> Commands I changed the keyboard shortcuts for:

Read Next Paragraph CTRL+.

Read Previous Paragraph CTRL+,

This way I can select some text and hit these keystrokes to go back and forward between paragraphs.

I also have mapped the "Forward" and "Middle" buttons on my mouse to perform these keyboard combos so I can easily use only the mouse.

share|improve this answer
  1. To open the Narrator press Windows logo key + Enter.
  2. Caps Lock+Ctrl+U to read the current page
  3. Caps Lock+Ctrl+I to read the current paragraph

For detailed list of commands see: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/hear-text-read-aloud-with-narrator

share|improve this answer
Using those shortcuts on Firefox text paragraph Narrator says "Not on explorable text". –  Drake Nov 5 '12 at 13:26
Firefox is an MSAA application and currently does not implement UI Automation (UIA). A project was started to add UIA support to Firefox, see this blog post for details. Also you can track the progress of UIA implementation on bugzilla –  Paulius Uza Nov 5 '12 at 13:56
I've checked out the link you specified and can get Narrator to read everything except the "meat" of the application. So it can navigate menus and toolbars, but can't even get it read the text of a MS Word 2010 Document. Have you actually had success getting Narrator to read anything? –  Joel B Feb 5 '13 at 17:09

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.