I use Option-Enter A LOT. My main uses are to put a new line into a message in Messages, and to open a url in a new tab in Google Chrome, I know I can hit Command-T, but I often want to modify the url slightly and open in a new tab in one fell swoop.

This used to work fine all the time, now it will work for a while and then stop until the next reboot. I have looked at System Preferences->Keyboard->Shortcuts and there's nothing defined for Option-Enter.

If there is a likely culprit, please let me know. Otherwise, if you could explain how to determine which App or process is affecting this.

Running El Capitan 10.11.3

  • Not sure, but I always thought the respective shortcuts were Ctrl-Enter in most native Mac apps for entering new lines, and Option-Enter in Chrome for opening in new tab... both of which work for me in 10.11.3.
    – calum_b
    Jan 25, 2016 at 17:28

1 Answer 1


The problem was an extra keyboard that I had enabled: Unicode Hex Input. I had definitely forgotten about it. I would do something (not sure what, don't really care) to switch to this keyboard and when this keyboard is active the Option-Enter does not work.

I removed this keyboard from my list of Input Sources: System Preferences -> Keyboard, Input Sources Tab. Problem solved, no longer able to switch to this.

Below is a screenshot of my Keyboard Preference Pane on the Input Sources Tab. Keyboard Preference Pane

Note: The oval is where the Unicode source was. When there are multiple sources the minus button (bottom left arrow) is active to remove the currently selected source. Also I have Show Input menu in menu bar checked - there will be no menu bar item if you have only one source.

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