With April Fool’s Day quickly approaching, it got us wondering, what are some of the best computer based pranks to pull on someone? So, we compiled a list of the ones we thought could be the most effective.
You can use this list to play a prank on a co-worker or friend. Similarly, if one of these pranks is played on you, use this list to undo the trick, and to come up with better ways to get revenge.
Just remember to tell your co-worker “April Fool’s” and help them undo the prank before they think something is seriously wrong and call the help desk.
Here are a few of our favorite computer based pranks:
Changing the Desktop to a Picture
The Setup: To setup this classic office prank, create a print screen of the desktop. Then, paste it into Pain, and save the image as a bitmap. Set the newly created image as the Desktop Wallpaper, and then go into the desktop settings and hide all the icons.
The Joke: While their Desktop will look the same, when your co-worker clicks on items, nothing will happen.
Incorrect Spell Check
The Setup: Go to the computer of the person you are wanting to prank, and open Microsoft Word. Change the autocorrect settings for the spellchecker, so that it changes perfectly normal words to strange things. Settings can be found under File > Options > Proofing > AutoCorrect Options. Remember to setup the Replace Text as you Type option, and set it to replace common words such as and, the, to, with weird words such as rutabaga, firework, or whatever. Use your imagination.
The Joke: When your co-worker uses Word, any of the words you changed in the AutoCorrect settings will automatically change as they type. Watch as hilarity ensues as your co-worker tries to figure out if it’s them, the keyboard, or something else that’s causing the problem.
The Setup: Attach a wireless keyboard to a co-workers computer, and then give the keyboard to someone else. Take the co-worker you are pranking aside somewhere else, like the conference room, and explain that the company wants people to start using the Speech-to-Text feature in Windows. Train them how to use it, then send them back to their desk.
The Joke: Have the person with the wireless keyboard type in random words, and then watch and listen as the “trainer” starts speaking louder and louder, changing their pronunciation, trying to get the computer to recognize and learn words.
Swapping Mouse Buttons
The Setup: Open the Mouse Properties (Start > Control Panel > Mouse) and set the button configuration to switch the primary and secondary buttons.
The Joke: Sit back and watch as your co-worker grows more frustrated when their left-click acts like right-click.
Want some more computer pranks? Try these websites:
For years now, Windows has retained the same shortcut keys, regardless of which version of the Operating System (OS) you were running. However, when Windows8 came onto the scene this changed, leaving users with a few new things to learn.
Here is a list of common Windows 8 shortcuts, geared towards helping you get around this new OS faster.
Start Screen: To locate what you’re looking for faster, just start typing when you’re on the Start Screen, and Windows will find what you’re looking for. Not on the start screen? Press the Windows key on the keyboard to get there, and then just start typing.
- CTRL+ / CTRL-: Zoom in or out of items, like apps pinned to the start screen.
- CTRL+ Scroll Wheel on Mouse: Also zooms in or out of items (like CTRL+ / CTRL-).
- ESC: Stop or exit the current task.
- Windows Key + Number Key (1 – 9, and 0): Opens the first 10 icons in your taskbar on your desktop. 1 is the icon to the far left, 0 is the 10th
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icon to the right.
- Windows Key + C: Opens the Charm menu on the right (Note: The Charm menu allows you to search for items, attach devices, and shut down your computer.)
- Windows Key + E: Opens File Explorer to the My Computer view, showing all of your drives.
- Windows Key + F: Opens the Search charm search to search files.
- Windows Key + G: Cycle through Gadgets on the Desktop.
- Windows Key + H: Opens the Share charm to share items.
- Windows Key + I: Opens the Settings charm, where you can adjust settings including brightness, or shut down your computer. Also helpful for showing settings for the current app.
- Windows Key + J: Switch between the main app and a snapped app.
- Windows Key + K: Opens the Devices charm to view connected devices.
- Windows Key + M: Maximize all windows.
- Windows Key + Shift + M: Restore minimized windows on the desktop.
- Windows Key + O: Locks the screen orientation (helpful for touchscreen devices).
- Windows Key + P: Chose a presentation display mood.
- Windows Key + Q: Opens the Search charm to search apps (note different that Windows Key + K that searches files only, not apps).
- Windows Key + R: Opens Run menu allowing you to launch programs and other commands.
- Windows Key + W: Opens the Search charm to search settings (only).
- Windows Key + Z: Shows you the list of available commands for an app.
- Windows Key + Spacebar: Changes the input language and keyboard layout.
- Windows Key + CTRL + Spacebar: Change to a previously selected input
- Windows Key + Tab: Cycle through open apps (except desktop apps).
- Windows Key + CTRL + Tab: Cycle through apps and snap them as they are cycled.
- Windows Key + Shift + Tab: Cycle through open apps in reverse order.
- Windows Key + Page Up: Move the start screen and apps to the monitor on the left (minus desktop apps).
- Windows Key + Page Down: Move the start screen and apps to the monitor on the right.
- Windows Key + Period (.): Snaps an app to the right.
- Windows Key + Shift + Period (.): Snaps an app to the left.
- Windows Key + F1: Open Windows Help and Support.