I usually have lots of apps and windows open and minimized on my desktop, and sometimes it is hard to find the exact one I need. So it would be handy to be able to search through them and bring the one to the foreground that I am looking for.

Similar to how you can search for files in Sublime Text with Ctrl+P, and AFAIR in JetBrains apps too.

I am fine with a built-in solution if one exists, or a 3rd party app is good too.

I'm aware that if I press Ctrl+Tab a magnifying glass appears in the top right corner titled Search Activities. This could be good, except it doesn't seem to search at all in the application titles. E.g. if I type explorer in there, it just springs this error on me: No results for "explorer" in your timeline. Try searching with Cortana.

I'm also asking here because it's almost impossible to search for a solution to this on e.g. Google, as queries like

  • windows search for window
  • windows jump to window
  • search open windows
  • search open applications

Yield very irrelevant results, mostly related to file searching.

  • 1
    How does this have only 4 votes? It's hard to believe more people aren't looking for this feature! Mar 9, 2022 at 16:56

2 Answers 2


Microsoft's PowerToys Run (installed with Microsoft PowerToys from the Windows Store) provides this as part of its "Spotlight-like" feature. Pressing Alt+Space will bring up a Search field, which will return (as you type) results that include matching window titles.

Selecting the result itself will, of course, switch to that window. There are also "Close Window" and "Kill Task" icons available directly in the search result.

PowerToys Run will return quite a few different search-as-you-type result types in addition to just Windows titles. If you'd like to filter by just Window titles, you can prefix the title with <. In other words:


... will find the "File Explorer" window.


It is indeed hard to search for this, but I finally managed it with "windows alt tab search", and found this:


It seems to do exactly what's required!

  • 1
    This is an amazing find, I don't have to use Windows often, but when I do I miss this ability that rofi provides me on Linux and Spotlight provides on macOS (which can be supplemented with Alfred or other automations).
    – dragon788
    Jun 3, 2021 at 15:53

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