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I have an external mac keyboard on my mac, and would like to be able to use the keyboard to control the volume like I do with my MacBook pro's FN+F10-12 keys, but there's no FN key on my external keyboard.

How can I do this? I'm willing to change to using just Function keys if required.

  • System preferences keyboard, you can set it there – Ruskes Sep 23 '13 at 13:40
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You could try using a private.xml like this with KeyRemap4MacBook:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<root>
  <item>
    <name>test</name>
    <identifier>test</identifier>
    <autogen>__KeyToKey__ KeyCode::F1, VK_CONTROL, KeyCode::BRIGHTNESS_DOWN</autogen>
    <autogen>__KeyToKey__ KeyCode::F2, VK_CONTROL, KeyCode::BRIGHTNESS_UP</autogen>
    <autogen>__KeyToKey__ KeyCode::F3, VK_CONTROL, KeyCode::EXPOSE_ALL</autogen>
    <autogen>__KeyToKey__ KeyCode::F4, VK_CONTROL, KeyCode::LAUNCHPAD</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F5, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::KEYBOARDLIGHT_LOW</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F6, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::KEYBOARDLIGHT_HIGH</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F7, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::MUSIC_PREV</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F8, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::MUSIC_PLAY</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F9, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::MUSIC_NEXT</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F10, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::VOLUME_MUTE</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F11, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::VOLUME_DOWN, ModifierFlag::OPTION_L | ModifierFlag::SHIFT_L</autogen>
    <autogen>__ConsumerToKey__ KeyCode::F12, VK_CONTROL, ConsumerKeyCode::VOLUME_UP, ModifierFlag::OPTION_L | ModifierFlag::SHIFT_L</autogen>
  </item>
</root>

I don't know if it works with all keyboards, but it does work with my Kinesis Advantage.

See http://lri.me/keyremap4macbook.html for more information about using KeyRemap4MacBook.

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I have also faced this problem. Although I was using a full 110% keyboard with macro keys build-in. However, windows macro never works on mac :)

I used keyboard maestro to define a costume hotkey/macro to do this. Basically, I create a new macro that triggers on the in[ut and invokes an Applescript to change the volume.

script for mute

-- Toggle Mute
if (output muted of (get volume settings)) then
    set volume output volume 15 without output muted
else
    set original to (output volume of (get volume settings))
    set step1 to original * 0.8
    set step2 to original * 0.6
    set step3 to original * 0.3
    set step4 to original * 0.17
    set step5 to original * 0.06
    set volume output volume step1 without output muted
    delay 0.2
    set volume output volume step2 without output muted
    delay 0.2
    set volume output volume step3 without output muted
    delay 0.2
    set volume output volume step4 without output muted
    delay 0.2
    set volume output volume step5 without output muted
    set volume with output muted
end if

Script for volume up

set volume output volume ((output volume of (get volume settings)) + 5) without output muted

Script for volume down

set volume output volume ((output volume of (get volume settings)) - 5) without output muted

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