My New Keyboard

So I bought a mechanical keyboard. It was reviewed as a good value for someone who wanted it for typing (though it’s also a gaming keyboard). I like the action on it, but it has a big problem. See the key to the left of the right Ctrl key? It seems to have the same function as a right click, but I have no use for it.

Unfortunately, where it’s placed means that I’m often accidentally hitting it with my palm just below my right pinkie, at which point it screws up whatever I’m typing, by inserting text or something else, which I have to then undo with ctrl-z. It would be nice if it could be reprogrammed but even if it was a Windows key (as it was on my previous keyboard, that would screw thing up in Linux by going to the workspace menu. I didn’t have the problem on my previous keyboard because the key profile was lower. I guess I’ll just try removing the key and see if the problem goes away.

[Update a while later]

In the process of trying to figure out how to delete the mapping on the problem key, I discovered this amusing document. “Before you read this, please understand that I never wanted to write this document, being grossly under-qualified, but I always wanted to read it, and this was the only way.”

8 thoughts on “My New Keyboard”

  1. Rand,
    I hesitate to recommend this given your sordid past, but here I go again. Rather than mechanically removing the key you can see what it is mapped to using xev and then use the tool xmodmap to delete its mapping*:

    I’ve done this in the past, but am a little rusty. Please don’t follow-up with questions… 🙂

    *If you already knew this, never mind. If you did, why the OP? Public service announcement?

    1. I’ve done this in the past, but am a little rusty. Please don’t follow-up with questions…

      Bt if yu d! M‘LL d my best t heLp! Stay away frm e!

  2. I use this as a mechanical keyboard. It won’t solve your problem with the properties key, but it is 2/3rds the price and cordless. With the exception of the Windows special keys, it feels a lot like an IBM Selectric. I do understand the annoyance. My keyboard is also for gaming and has a column of 6 programmable function keys along the left-hand side. I hit the G1 nearly every time I really want to hit ESC.

  3. This reminds me of a weird solution we used in our lab to enable Labview (shudder) to run a GUI based proprietary program as part of a large automation system. We needed to bring up a drop down menu, but without using a mouse. The solution was to feed a keystroke into the Win key queue that had the same effect as a right mouse click. That key code is the same as the key you don’t like (it used to be pretty standard on full size keyboards).

    As someone who doesn’t like to use a mouse if I can avoid it, I actually like this key, but YMMV.

    1. Even if I liked it, I would hate its location. It’s almost unavoidable to hit every couple dozen keystrokes, unless I’m very careful (i.e., slow, which defeats the purpose of getting the new keyboard). I use a mouse, so I have no use for it. It happened twice in writing this comment.

  4. Given that it’s hot-swappable, actually removing the key is probably straightforward, actually (although remapping is probably the better plan). I wonder if you can get a dummy switch to put in the socket ?

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