I recently bought a Microsoft Surface Ergonomic keyboard. It paired with my mid 2011 MacBook Air running High Sierra straight away. However, when I try to pair it with my mid 2011 iMac (also running High Sierra) it just won't pair. It occasionally recognises a new device, although the MacBook picked up immediately that it was an 'ergonomic keyboard,' when the iMac recognises it it identifies it as unknown device with a serial number 00-00-00-00-00. It then asked me to enter a code, I've tried the generic 0000 as well as 1234, and even 00-00-00-00-00, but it continually fails to connect.

I've also tried - and failed- to use the 'set up a new keyboard' function in Bluetooth preferences. That button only appears sporadically, but when it has I've tried to 'press the button that appears to the left of the shift key' to identify the keyboard, but this doesn't work either.

I've about come to the end of ideas, anyone out there have a similar experience and managed to find a solution? Grateful for any help received.

  • It's possible the BT controller on your iMac is faulty. Does WiFi work? Can you pair other devices? Also, try running AHT - Apple Hardware Test. Hold D while booting from a powered off state with the AC adapter attached.
    – Allan
    Commented Sep 10, 2018 at 20:44
  • WiFi works and every other bluetooth device, speakers, mouse, keyboard and even synching with my MacBook, so I don't think it's faulty. Commented Sep 11, 2018 at 11:07

2 Answers 2


The issue was with the version of Bluetooth. The built-in version (2.0, I believe) wouldn't configure with the keyboard.

I've since bought a Bluetooth 4.0 Dongle (cost about £12) and I can now use the keyboard. It's a bit of a faff, had to download a Bluetooth developer tool from Apple and I now have to manually switch from the internal Bluetooth to the dongle before I can use the keyboard.

Thanks for all your suggestions, though, and hopefully anyone facing the same issue now has a solution.



I have a 2017 Macbook pro that I had a very difficult time getting the Microsoft Surface keyboard to connect with. It would pair, but not connect.

The answer for me was to delete the com.apple.Bluetooth.plist file (found in Macintosh HD > Library > Preferences directory).

I had a lot of previously paired devices (multiple keyboards, headphones, trackpads) and a relatively long list of devices.

The issue, as far as I can tell was that the keyboard was looking for Bluetooth resources high on the preferences list of paired devices. Once the com.apple.Bluetooth.plist preferences file was deleted, a new one was created and I was able to pair the Microsoft Surface keyboard right away without any further issues.

Great keyboard btw. That combined with Karabiner and I have no complaints.

  • You're amazing! Deleting the plist file, and then cycling Bluetooth off/on, allowed me to pair. Thank you.
    – alekop
    Commented Aug 9, 2021 at 5:02

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