I have a Dell Inspiron 15 7000 laptop which is about 6 months old. In using MS Office, I can't seem to use the normal control-home and control-end to go to the beginning and end of an Excel spreadsheet respectively. Those entries merely shift a couple of cells left or right. Can anybody suggest what I'm doing wrong?
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Not sure which exact model in the 15 7000 Series you have, but are Home and End set up as Fn alternatives to certain keys? If so, you’d need to press Ctrl-Fn-Home/End. And I think you’d have to press Fn immediately before Home/End, i.e. after already holding down Ctrl.
Ok, looking at the keyboard layout of the current Inspiron 15 7000 and looking over your post again, it really sounds like Home and End are Fn alternatives to the left and right key. So what's happening right now is that you're pressing Ctrl+Left/Right, not Ctrl+Home/End. In Excel, Ctrl+Left/Right jumps to the next populated cell in the row. In Word and basically anywhere else where you can type text, it jumps the cursor from word to word rather than letter to letter.
So yeah, just get in the habit of pressing Ctrl, then Fn, then Left/Right in order to achieve Ctrl+Home/End. I have a keyboard set up the same way and it was definitely awkward to use for a while, particularly since I spend a lot of time on desktop keyboards that have dedicated keys for this purpose, but I got used to it within about 2 weeks of deciding to train myself.
Also, pro tip if you didn't know: Shift+Home/End highlights the selected row/line of text from the cursor's current position to the end you selected.