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I have two different locations to use my MacBook pro and attach an external USB keyboard at both places. They are both 104keys and have identical layouts.

When I first plug in the keyboard it often (not always) stops working properly. The modifier keys will be completely incorrect and then most of the regular keys are also translated improperly.

What I have been doing is mess around with the laptop builtin keyboard a bit then back and forth for a while (tens of seconds to a minute or so) before the keyboard functionality usually gets back to normal.

I have not been able to settle on a pattern that reliably works any better than the above - which is messy and moderately unpredictable.

Has anyone run into this and come up with a better solution?

Answers to comments

  • rebooting does not have an effect: this behavior has been happening for months at least
  • "identical place" not sure what that means but both USB ports have been tried numerous times and do not affect the result
  • Modifier keys are wacked out. It's not as simple as Option and Command are swapped : for example doing Command-Tab seems to go to Expose' . There is no key combination that does the proper Application Switching.
  • Regular keys are also wacked out. Typing asdfg does weird things including jumping to different applications. Behavior is too unexpected and extreme to decipher
  • If you reboot, does it function properly? – Allan May 4 at 0:08
  • Are the keyboards at both locations identical? – Wilfred Smith May 4 at 0:08
  • I don't have that problem with two Bluetooth keyboards (of different manufacturers). – Wilfred Smith May 4 at 0:09
  • Can you give specifics about exactly how the modifier keys are not correct? What happens when you type asdfg for example? – Tom Gewecke May 4 at 12:13
  • @TomGewecke added to question – javadba May 4 at 13:12

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