My wife just got a used Mid 2011 MacBook Air. The keyboard looks like this: Actual keyboard

But the keys work like this:

Works like this

There's no way no adjust the backlight brightness and the volume controls are all messed up. How can I fix this?

  • It probably won't help, but you could try deleting ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.symbolichotkeys.plist and restarting.
    – Lri
    Oct 7, 2013 at 11:42
  • I also have a mid-2011 MacBook Air which has recently developed the exact issue you describe. I changed my trackpad about a week ago because the original became so flaky it was not useable. The one I purchased claimed to be for both the 2011 and 2012 Airs. I am going to reinstall the old trackpad to see if it is the cause and will post back. Jul 14, 2014 at 16:13

1 Answer 1


I am back after reinstalling my old flaky trackpad. My function keys are back to normal. This shows that the trackpad somehow interacts with the keyboard layout but I can not tell you how. Since the mid-2011 Air models seem to have numerous trackpad problems, it is possible your wife's used one had had the trackpad replaced.

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