Right Click

What Does Right Click Mean?

The right click or “right mouse button” command or control is related to the use of a conventional computer mouse, a major peripheral developed in combination with the personal computer since the 1980s. The right-click corresponds to the right button of the mouse — most mice have two buttons, one on the right, and one on the left.

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Techopedia Explains Right Click

The idea of a right-click is extremely useful in programming and design — in any kind of program that utilizes the mouse as a command device, right-click is a convenient way to refer to the programming of this type of command in an operating system, application or other project.

In general, a right-click user event is a “deeper level” event than a left click. In other words, the left click is used for top-level processes like menu navigation, with a right-click often being used for things like file or system research. For example, where a left click might be used to simply open a menu item or a file, the right-click event is often a “help needed” event or a method for displaying background information about that item.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.