Most commands available from menus have their corresponding predefined key bindings which can be one of the following key sequences:
For instance Ctrl-s which stands for 'forward search', means that the 's' key must be pressed while the control key is active (pressed).
For instance Ctrl-x i which stands for 'insert file', means that the 'i' key must be pressed alone after the sequence Ctrl-x. Another example could be Ctrl-x Ctrl-f which stands for 'read file', it means that the 'x' key then the 'r' key must be pressed while the control key stays active.
For example Esc q which stands for 'query replace' means that the escape key must be pressed and released and then that the 'q' key must be pressed.
Important: in all cases the sequence Ctrl-g aborts the current sequence (i.e. the internal automaton comes back to its default state).
Using key bindings to drive the editor is more efficient and quicker. For users who are not familiarized with this mechanism, this means that the control and escape keys become the main keys. The advantage is that you can enter text and commands without having to move your hands to track the mouse, then open menus, then move pointer again, then release button, and finally come back to the keyboard.
Here is the complete default command list for all modes (see also the specific modes command list §4.3 page ):