links to plug-in help pages are missing, a lot of shortcuts from plugins are missing

JOSM Keyboard Shortcuts

The following shortcuts are the default setting. This list might be outdated. You can always look in the JOSM shortcut preferences to see all active shortcuts (except for the different mode modifiers).

You can change default shortcuts in source:trunk/images/preferences/shortcuts.png "Shortcuts Preferences" tab or directly in preferences.

Every "button" and menu item in JOSM may be assigned with hot-key (including menu items provided with plugins; popular presets and saved search queries). Some of the default hotkeys or activation steps may be surprising. All active shortcuts will be present under "Hotkeys" tab in F12 menu you can adjust and fine-tune them or reset at any moment.

Annotated keyboard diagram based on this page

Announcement at user blogs png version with svg source

Modes and dialogues

Main shortcut Activation steps page multiple hotkeys?
S Select objects yes, many
S toggled by S LassoMode 1
A "Standard Mode", it will draw "connected" lines yes, 4
A + hold Alt it starts a new way, rather than continuing an existing way
A + hold Shift it will create isolated nodes
A + hold Ctrl it will disable "snapping" to existing ways and nodes
A toggled by A It will enable "angle-snapping" mode
W Improve Way Accuracy yes, 4?
Ctrl+Delete Delete... yes, 3
Ctrl+Delete + hold Alt the way and its' associated unused nodes are deleted.
Ctrl+Delete + hold Shift will remove segments under cursor and additionally split way in two
Ctrl+Delete + hold Ctrl the objects and all its references are deleted
X Stretch a part of a way (create a building or something else) yes, 6
X toggled by X Dual aligment (this mode uses two reference segments (neigbors of the original segment) and moves the nodes each according to its own reference segment)
X + hold Ctrl while dragging a single node will move node along one it's adjacent segments
X and double click at way a double click at a way segment inserts a new node
X + hold Ctrl move segment parallel to base segment
X + hold Shift Always create nodes
X + hold Alt Don't alter original way, create new way instead
Alt+A then press CTRL+SHIFT+1 ... CTRL+SHIFT+5 To insert one of latest tags from "Add value" dialogue yes, many
Shift+F 4 steps at very least Fast Drawing mode yes, 11


F3 [Help/Action/TaggingPresetSearch Search presets]
Shift+D Add a node by known coordinate
Ctrl+Shift+C Copy coordinates of selected node to buffer
Ctrl+F Search
Shift+F3 Search objects by preset
Shift+B Distribute nodes
Shift+J Join overlapping Areas
B Draw a building, aligned to the first building
Ctrl+Alt+B Set buildings size
Shift+T Terrace a building
Ctrl+Shift+Alt+V [Help/Action/ReverseTerrace Reverse a terrace]
C Combine Ways
F Follow line
G Unglue ways
J Join Node to Way
N Move a node to the nearest way segment
L Align nodes into a straight line
M Merge Nodes
O Align nodes in circle
P Split Way
Q Orthogonalize Shape
R Reverse Way
Shift+Y Simplify Way
Del Delete object but don't change into delete mode
Ctrl+A Select all
Ctrl+B Create a multi-polygon
Ctrl+C Copy Way/Node etc to buffer
Ctrl+X Cut Way/Node etc to buffer
Ctrl+V Paste from buffer
Ctrl+Shift+V Paste only the tags
Ctrl+D Duplicate selected objects
Shift+M Mirror selected nodes and ways
Shift+O Create circle
Shift+P Create parallel line
Shift+Q Undo Orthogonalization for certain nodes
Escape Unselect all
Shift+← Move objects
Shift+↑ Move objects
Shift+→ Move objects
Shift+↓ Move objects


Ctrl+Shift+P Remove selected objects from the layer
Ctrl+Alt+U Reload the currently selected objects from the server
Ctrl+Alt+D Download parent ways and relations
Ctrl+Alt+M Reload the modified objects in the current data layer from the server
Ctrl+Alt+Shift+D Delete tags from selected elements
Alt+Shift+U [Help/Action/Undelete Undelete an OSM object] ("Undelete" plugin)
Shift+V Perform validation checks for current layer or selected objects

Objects history

Ctrl+H Show history dialog
Ctrl+Shift+H Show history at
Ctrl+I Advanced object info dialogue


Ctrl+Alt+C Changeset manager
Ctrl+Alt+Q Close open changesets

interface and appearance

Tab Show/hide windows
F11 Fullscreen mode
Ctrl+W Toggle between wireframe and mappaint mode


Ctrl+Shift+M Merge the currently selected objects onto another data layer
Ctrl+M Merges the content of current active layer into another layer of the same kind
Ctrl+F4 Delete layer
(absent) Duplicate selected OSM data layer

Toggle and switch between first 10 layers of Layer List Dialog

Shift+A + press 1 Activate layer 1, counting from the top
... ...
Shift+A + press 9 Activate layer 9, counting from the top
Shift+A + press 0 Activate layer 10, counting from the top
Alt+1 Show/hide layer 1, counting from the _bottom_
... ...
Alt+9 Show/hide layer 9, counting from the _bottom_
Alt+0 Show/hide layer 10, counting from the _bottom_


+ Zoom in
- Zoom out
Ctrl+, Zoom in
Ctrl+. Zoom out
Ctrl+← Move viewport
Ctrl+↑ Move viewport
Ctrl+→ Move viewport
Ctrl+↓ Move viewport
1 Zoom to data
2 Zoom to layer
3 Zoom to selection
4 Zoom to conflict
5 Zoom to download
6 Zoom to problem?
8 Zoom to previous
9 Zoom to next
Shift+A Cycle through the different Auto zoom modes
Ctrl+J Opens the Jump To Position dialog
Ctrl+Shift+F Enable/Disable automatic centring of the map view to last placed node


Ctrl+Space Autocomplete menu items
Ctrl+Shift+↓ Download
Ctrl+Shift+↑ Upload
Ctrl+L Open location
Alt+Shift+↓ Download from Overpass API
Ctrl+Shift+O Download object
Ctrl+Alt+Shift+U Upload Selection
Ctrl+U Update data
Ctrl+Z Undo
Ctrl+Y Redo
Ctrl+N New Layer
Ctrl+O Open file
Ctrl+S Save file
Ctrl+Shift+S Save as
Ctrl+E Export to GPX
F1 press anywhere to open main Help page
F1 press over element in question to open context-sensitive Help page
Shift+F1 About screen (with JOSM version number)
F12 Preferences
Ctrl+Alt+Shift+J Restart JOSM
Ctrl+Q Exit JOSM

Audio menu

. Play/pause
F8 Next Marker
F5 Previous Marker
F7 Forward
F6 Back
F9 Faster
F4 Slower


Alt+Shift+LLayer windowList of all open layers. Note that it contains different menus for the different layer types.
Alt+Shift+PTags/Membership windowTags and memberships of selected objects.
Alt+Shift+CSelection windowSelection list window.
Alt+Shift+RRelations windowList of all relations.
Alt+Shift+OCommand Stack windowList of all commands (undo buffer)
Alt+Shift+AAuthors windowList of Authors of selected objects
Alt+Shift+CConflict List windowList of unsolved conflicts.
Alt+Shift+VValidator windowValidator window
Alt+Shift+FFilters windowFilter objects and hide/disable them.
Alt+Shift+MMap Style windowConfigure the map painting style.
YPhoto window?(only if photos are loaded; defaults to open as unsticked window)

Was explained at Help/ToggleDialogs.

(continue cleanup/sort below)

all modes

Click-RightMouse Click and drag to move the map.
Scroll-Wheel Zoom in and out.

Platform specific caveats

Middle mouse button

Mac OS

(outdated steps?)

There's no button that works as a middle button like with UNIX. You can use the middle button with an Apple Mouse. Connect Apple Mouse, Open System Preferences, click "Keyboard and Mouse" and configure the Ball button as "button 3". Then it can be used as the middle button. Note that you cannot configure other buttons as "button 3" with the Apple Driver. Maybe you can find a more useful mouse driver for this purpose.

Alt key

Alt key is used by Compiz to move windows on Ubuntu

It's likely the Alt key combination is catched before it is passed to JOSM.

Steps below tested with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS:


In gnome desktop environment "Alt"-Click is used for moving the window. The "AltGr" key can be used instead; note that on some keyboards the "AltGr" key is simply the right-hand "Alt" key.

GNOME or MATE (possibly outdated)

Linux may use the left-ALT key as a mouse modifier, which will annoyingly compel Help/Action/ImproveWayAccuracy mode to use right-Alt to delete nodes. Here is an article explaining how to reassign that ALT key in Gnome (or MATE), freeing it up for IWAM application usage. <Super> is "Windows key".

Alt+F2 → dconf-editor.
Click through org → gnome → desktop → wm → preferences → mouse-button-modifier → Set it to whichever key you like. e.g. <Super> or <Control><Alt> or <Alt><Super>


In some Linux desktop environment (e.g. KDE) the Alt-click event is captured to perform actions like dragging the window across the screen. To reclaim this combination to Josm you have to open the Control Center, click on Desktop, Window Behaviour, Actions and change the modifier key to something different than Alt.

See also

  • Auto generated list of shortcuts

Back to Main Help

Last modified 5 weeks ago Last modified on 2016-12-17T01:03:55+01:00