When I launch the Windows character map, it looks like this:

character map default view

When I click on a character to select it, it looks like this:

character map selected view

Notice that the zoomed in view of the ± character obscures the ° to the left and the ² to the right.

So how do I get it to unzoom, so that the selected character is not obscuring the two cells next to it? I've tried hitting Esc, but that doesn't seem to do anything.

EDIT: I did figure out that if you double-click on the selected character, it puts the character in the "Characters to copy" text field and unzooms. I can use this, but I would still like a way to unzoom or deselect the current character without copying it to that field.

  • 2
    How did you get a black title bar?
    – Kroltan
    Mar 2, 2017 at 15:57
  • 1
    @Kroltan Open control.exe from Win+R, then use the Desktop (non-Metro) Personalisation menu. Navigating through the right combination of menus will bring up the original Personalisation dialog (dating back to at least Windows 98!) from which you can change everything.
    – wizzwizz4
    Mar 2, 2017 at 19:58
  • You're a hero! I always thought that dialog only applied to the classic theme (which was the case up to win7).
    – Kroltan
    Mar 2, 2017 at 21:25
  • You can also get the same effect by going into the Metro settings app, going to the colors section, and setting the accent color manually. Then, on the same page, enable "Show color on title bar" to get that color to show up on window title bars.
    – quanticle
    Mar 5, 2017 at 12:16

1 Answer 1


How do I get it to unzoom (without adding the character to "Characters to copy")?

Press space (Switch between Enlarged and Normal mode when a character is selected).

RIGHT ARROW Move to the right or to the beginning of the next line
LEFT ARROW  Move to the left or to the end of the previous line
UP ARROW    Move up one row
DOWN ARROW  Move down one row
PAGE UP     Move up one screen at a time
PAGE DOWN   Move down one screen at a time
HOME        Move to the beginning of the line
END         Move to the end of the line
CTRL+HOME   Move to the first character
CTRL+END    Move to the last character
SPACEBAR    Switch between Enlarged and Normal mode when a character is selected

Source Windows XP Character Map Keyboard Shortcuts

  • 12
    What an intuitive UI...
    – Muzer
    Mar 2, 2017 at 17:49
  • @Muzer: and great the way this help appears when I strike F5 or click Help, or would be great if it did appear or at least appear in the “frequently” asked questions.
    – PJTraill
    Mar 2, 2017 at 20:19
  • @Muzer What do you mean? As soon as you get frustrated and start banging your fists on the keyboard, that's the most likely key to get struck. It's so intuitive you can do it without even trying. ;-)
    – Jaquez
    Mar 3, 2017 at 2:03

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