I'm using the Microsoft Sculpt Keyboard with my Macbook Retina, on Yosemite. This ergonomic keyboard has a split Spacebar key, like so:

Split Spacebar on the MS Sculpt keyboard

I want to remap the left Spacebar key to Backspace to simplify my typing. On Windows, a custom driver enables this remapping out of the box. However, this driver is not available on OS X.

I've already installed Karabiner and experimented with remapping keys. When I start up the EventViewer in Karabiner, both keys show up as KeyCode::SPACE. Is there a lower-level keycode I can access to differentiate between the left and right Spacebar keys?

Any alternate solutions are also welcome!

3 Answers 3


The best thing I've come up with so far is to use Right-Alt as backspace. Not quite as good, but it gets the job done.


You can not do this on Sculpt Ergonomic. Only on Sculpt Comfort https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/2757670/new-features-of-the-sculpt-comfort-keyboard


Found this answer:

By default, the functions of both the left spacebar and the right spacebar is to enter a space. If you want the customized function of the split space bar (where the left button acts as a backspace key and the right button acts as a space-bar key), to get activated, you need to press and hold left and right space bar at the same time for more than 3 seconds.

Seems like this is an keyboard function itself, not OS.

  • Can you share a source? I just tried this, didn't work for me. I might be doing something wrong.
    – metacubed
    Commented Dec 15, 2016 at 18:39

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