This can obviously not be a re-invention of a Guide On Hotkeys - the information is out there from the beginning. This guide merely is a new version with three major benefits:
1.) The overview of all hotkeys is arranged with a colorcode from beginner to medium to advanced in order to give newcomers a sense of: With which hotkeys best to start with, and how to proceed.
cyan → light-blue → blue → purple (and: red: cheating)
new → medium → advanced → pro
2.) Besides some direct notes, the important sequences and glitches of hotkey-usings are hyperlinked to other articles and guides of this website in order to make it easier to find further details and tactics - which otherwise let ´s any hotkey-guide explode cause of tons of info.
3.) And finally the hotkeys are arranged functionally-wise in a common sense logic - neither alphabetically nor randomly:
0. Mouse Clicks
5. Command Keys
6. Other more useless ones
General Idea: To gain Speed & Control
On the one hand, hotkeys are speed-boosters like shortcuts - letting u make commands impossible to order them manually by mouse in the same time. On the other hand, hotkeys are an opener to various other commands impossible to order them only by mouse at all.
Moral: To become a better Commander, and conquer more often, it is absolutely essential to learn, practice and perfect in hotkeying.
Keyboard Settings: To re-key a Hotkey
There is a standard key arrangment for all hotkeys in the cncnet-lobby-settings-menu. However, you can also re-arrange/customize/ re-key them to your own best fits. But this has some principles:
1.) To change it in this settings-menu just type in your wished new keyboard-key to become that hotkey (be careful to not have one key for two hotkey-functions arranged, so they don't work).
2.) There is an option to change hotkeys manually in the rules.ini-file. See examply TAB-button disabling article for further instructions.
3.) Major aim for re-keying should be to arrange your needed hotkeys around your most used ones! That could either be Q and/or the Shifting hotkeys for tankers, or maybe the bookmarks for builders in some cases. It is a highly individual issue, where to arrange the hotkeys on your keyboard.
4.) For not-in-use hotkeys or useless ones, it makes lotsa sense to disable them (to not accidentally press them) by arranging them all on one far away key like # * ; : etc., this will disable them.
5.) Exceptions from these rules are: shift- and ctrl-key can't workingly be re-keyed inside the settings (unless u are willing to formate those keys in your general PC settings).
Link: On Shifting
Link: New Chatting Keys
Link: Formation Glitch
Link: Stopped Hidden Engis