This question is a bit strange, but here's the scenario:

  • macbook air laptop with El Capitan Mac OS X
  • currently logged off any account
  • liquid damage on keyboard has caused shift key to be permanently pressed
  • password to admin account has some lowercase letters and numbers
  • restarting enters "safe mode"

The machine has no sensitive data, so I'm happy for a solution even if it wipes out the admin account. I'm also happy to buy a USB keyboard/plug into an external screen if that will help.

How can I disable this pesky shift key? Or disable the built in keyboard all together?

  • I found this for capslock, but idk how it might be modified for shift - github.com/mathiasbynens/dotfiles/issues/310 - maybe someone smarter than me can figure it out. [Though it does occur to me that you'd be typing it in all-caps;)
    – Tetsujin
    Oct 20 '16 at 6:58

Disable keyboard:

sudo kextunload /System/Library/Extensions/AppleUSBTopCase.kext/Contents/PlugIns/AppleUSBTCKeyboard.kext/

Enable keyboard:

sudo kextload /System/Library/Extensions/AppleUSBTopCase.kext/Contents/PlugIns/AppleUSBTCKeyboard.kext/

For manipulation, you can use the virtual keyboard: System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard > Display panel "Keyboard" and "Symbols" in the menu bar


same problem here, thought of changing the keyboard. make your login all CAPS letter and install karabiner software where you can disable left shift key..

  • 1
    Can you elaborate how the OP can make his login name all CAPS, given the state the machine is in as described in the question?
    – nohillside
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:50

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