How to Modify Keyboard Shortcuts of After Effects

After Effects has tons of Keyboard Shortcuts which makes work easier and faster. The list is huge and you probably need some kind of cheat sheet for quick reference.

Here is a full list of After Effects Keyboard Shortcuts reference by Adobe. You can print this list and keep it at your workspace as it will make your work a lot easier. Moreover, below is a keyboard layout which accurately depicts all the essential and day to day used combination of After Effects Keyboard Shortcuts.

After Effects keyboard shortcuts layout

Download Keyboard Shortcuts Layout

Sometimes, there are certain combination of keys which are easy to remember. What if we can use those set of Keyboard shortcuts in After Effects. Though After Effects comes with pre-defined set of Shortcuts, it is possible to modify those keys with your custom one. You can even run After Effects Scripts with Keyboard Shortcuts.

After Effects UI has no such feature of changing keyboard shortcuts but it can be done using After Effects Shortcuts configuration file found in the application data of a user profile. I know it sounds complicated but it’s not.

Firstly, you have to enable hidden files and folders on your Windows computer. If it’s already enabled, skip this step.

  1. Open Control Panel.
  2. Go in Folder options and click on View Tab.
  3. Under Hidden Files and Folders, enable ‘Show hidden files, folders and drives‘.
    1

Modifying After Effects Keyboard Shortcuts

The configuration file used to modify After Effects keyboard shortcuts can be found in %userprofile%AppData\Roaming\Adobe\After Effects\11.0 (or the corresponding MAC folder).

Modify Keyboard Shortcuts of After Effects

This folders contains some configuration files along with the one we are searching for. Open up Adobe After Effects 11.0 Shortcuts and edit this file. Modify the pre-defined keys with your own set of custom shortcuts. To be on the safer side, make sure you create a backup of the file before changing anything.

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