How can I disable the system transpose (Ctrl+T) shortcut?

Note: I'm using a MacBook Pro running High Sierra (10.13.1)

I've tried searching online, stack overflow, etc. and tried everything I could think of, but I haven't been able to find any way to disable the system keyboard shortcuts. For example, Ctrl+T doesn't appear under Preferences > Keyboard. I even tried manually editing ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.symbolichotkeys.plist, but it doesn't appear there either.

For reference, here's what my ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.symbolichotkeys.plist file looks like

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1 Answer 1


These emacs-style shortcuts -- like ^T for transpose -- are defined for the entire OS's text system in /System/Library/Frameworks/AppKit.framework/Resources/StandardKeyBinding.dict.

To override the shortcuts, Apple suggests:

To customize bindings, you create a file named DefaultKeyBinding.dict in ~/Library/KeyBindings/ and specify bindings to augment or replace the standard bindings. You may use the standard bindings file as a template. It is recommended that you use the Property List Editor application to edit a bindings dictionary. You may use another application such as TextEdit or Xcode, but if you do you must ensure the encoding of the saved file is UTF8.

Source: https://developer.apple.com/library/content/documentation/Cocoa/Conceptual/EventOverview/TextDefaultsBindings/TextDefaultsBindings.html

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