Not sure if it is possible - is there a way to make macOS Sierra beta change the input language as soon as an external keyboard is connected? I have a Macbook Pro Retina 13" with an US keyboard layout, but sometimes I connect an external USB keyboard from Apple that has a German keyboard layout. While it is not difficult to manually switch between the two input languages, is there a way to automate this?

  • What OS are you actually using? If you're using the Sierra beta it's "macOS" not "MacOS", otherwise it's "OS X" for versions 10.8 ~ 10.11 and "Mac OS X" for 10.7 and earlier. Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 18:41
  • Changed it to macOS. I'm running the Sierra beta right now.
    – snurden
    Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 18:50

1 Answer 1


Karabiner can be set up to activate a different keyboard layout only for an external keyboard. See

Different key-maps/bindings for in-built keyboard and Bluetooth keyboard

  • The OP states "MacOS" without any other designator and if it's actually "macOS", then Karabiner does not work on macOS Sierra at the moment. Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 18:40
  • That is unfortunate, however, I think there should be support for macOS some time soon? Still interested if there are alternative solutions.
    – snurden
    Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 18:51
  • @snurden, While pqrs.org is probably testing Karabiner agains the macOS Sierra betas nonetheless I wouldn't necessarily expect a stable update until after the GM release of macOS Sierra. All one can do is to keep checking. :) Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 19:00
  • @snurden I think Karabiner is your only hope for this. Commented Aug 7, 2016 at 19:34

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .