When I do a find (not a find all, which closes the dialog) or replace in Notepad++, the focus will remain on the find/replace dialog. If I want to focus on the main window with the text in it, I either have to click or clumsily alt-tab + alt-shift-tab, or to close it I have to click. Is there a keyboard shortcut for closing the find/replace dialog?

I have read this question, but it relates to the opposite situation - his version of Notepad++ was focusing on the main window after a find or replace and he was wanting to revert focus back to the dialog.

I'm on 64-bit Win7 if that makes any difference.

  • If you had read Nate's comment carefully, it was clear that the loss of focus issue was with an older version of Notepad++. On newer versions the dialog remains focused and Esc closes it, which he mentioned as well.
    – Karan
    Mar 13, 2013 at 1:25
  • @Karan - whoops Mar 13, 2013 at 12:45
  • 1
    Turns out this is caused by Photoshop. See my answer. Oct 20, 2015 at 21:51
  • Running an AHK script with an Esc:: hotkey can also interfere. Mar 21, 2021 at 2:33

2 Answers 2


Esc will close the find/replace dialog and return focus to the main window.

  • This does not work in the most recent versions.
    – elixenide
    Jan 12, 2014 at 3:25
  • @EdCottrell: I just tried the two most recent versions, v6.5.2 and v6.5.3. This method still works in both. Jan 12, 2014 at 11:47
  • 1
    Actually, I now see I misread the question; I thought OP was asking how to close the Find Results window, not the Find/Replace dialog. You are correct that Esc will close the latter.
    – elixenide
    Jan 12, 2014 at 16:35
  • There used to be an option to let the find dialogue auto-hide after the first search. Is that still around?
    – will
    Mar 24, 2015 at 11:31
  • Nope, not anymore. I'm also on Win 7 64-bit. Having to click with your mouse when you're writing code should be outlawed! Or something. Oct 20, 2015 at 21:31

This is the cause, tested by me, and suddenly the Esc key works in npp :)

Photoshop causing other programs not receive ESC key

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