I would like to reassign my F4 button on my mac magic keyboard to something else. Unfortunately, when I try to reassign it, it opens Launch Pad.

Here's my keyboard Shortcuts panel... enter image description here

I'm able to remove the default action for other keys like the F3 key, but not for this one... How do I remove this default action so I can setup a new use for that F4 key?


It's not that F4 is set as Launchpad, it's that you have your F-Keys set as 'special function' keys & that special function happens to be Launchpad. (The set of little squares printed on the key next to F4 - each of those icons represent the special functions)

enter image description here

If you look at the first tab of that pref pane - Keyboard - You'll see that box is unchecked…

enter image description here

Once you do that, your 'real' F-Key will come into play, with whatever you set it for in the Shortcuts pane.

Alternatively, you can temporarily swap special function/F-Keys by holding Fn

  • Yes, you're right. That box is unchecked because I'm currently using other Function keys for different purposes without needing the Fn modifier. I would like to keep that box unchecked if possible, and remap the F4 key (launchpad key) to use for other stuff. – Scot Nery Feb 1 at 15:14
  • 1
    You can't remap it, because it's not an F-Key if you have that checkbox the other way. Fn/F swaps how the Mac reads the key. – Tetsujin Feb 1 at 15:17
  • 1
    Hmm… I found this - FunctionFlip - no idea if it still works in latest macOS. Or maybe Karabiner could do it – Tetsujin Feb 1 at 15:22
  • 1
    Thank you! I looked into my Karabiner settings and saw that Karabiner was actually the problem because it was assigned to Launchpad. I changed that setting to F4 and now it all works. What do I do with this StackExchange post now that I know it was a stupid question?! – Scot Nery Feb 1 at 15:44
  • 1
    Leave it. It may help someone else in future… part of a global searchable resource :) – Tetsujin Feb 1 at 15:46

You must log in to answer this question.

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