I've been browsing StackExchange, the MS UX guidelines, etc and have yet to find an answer, or even a suggestion about this.
In a Windows environment, Tab usually moves focus from control to control. In a standard form, this usually means moving from field to field. However, if there are other controls ancillary to filling out the form (maybe advanced buttons and the like) placed interstitially in the form, pressing tab will stop on them as well.
Is there an established convention for moving just between editable fields and skipping other controls?
Currently, we use tab as normal, moving through all controls in order, and up/down arrow to move between editable fields on the form. This causes some problems in that up/down arrow are overloaded, such as when selecting items from a dropdown or moving between lines on a large text area.
My gut feeling is that arrow keys should be used to manipulate the current control in whatever way it supports.
But Tab is already somewhat overloaded. Tab moves forward, Shift+Tab moves back, Alt-tab is owned by windows, ctrl+tab/ctrl+shift+tab moves back and forth between application tabs (which we also need).
Perhaps Alt+arrows to move between only editable fields? Or even page-up/page-down? Those might be overloaded is some cases too, but not nearly as much.
Looking for guidance. Thanks!