I’m trying to reinstall macOS Monterey.

Unfortunately, for whatever reason, they have decided that the mouse won’t work during the reinstall process. The pointer appears on screen but the mouse doesn’t move it. The mouse has been charged so I’m assuming that this is just a thing.

So anyway, a couple of screens into the install, the software licence agreement dialog has come up.

photo of licence dialog

Question: How do I press Agree on this dialog?

I can scroll the text with the arrow keys, but neither Tab nor Shift-Tab move to the button panel below.

I can get to the main menu with fn-Ctrl-F2 but there is barely anything in it. I can also get to the keyboard input selector in the top right with fn-Ctrl-F8. (I was looking for some way to turn on more accessibility options.)

I am assuming there is some way for me to press this button, if Monterey really is the big improvement in accessibility that it was marketed as. In my case the mouse may not be getting paired as expected but in someone else’s case they may be unable to use a mouse at all.

  • 1
    I can't speak to this specific instance from experience but I would try COMMAND-A for agree and COMMAND-D for disagree. Those don't work everywhere but they do often enough to pleasantly surprise me. Dec 1, 2021 at 0:36
  • 2
    Is this an M1 Mac? There have been many Bluetooth connectivity issues reported, for which a fix is reportedly on the way. In the meantime… if you've set it up previously [& I always recommend doing it for these 'just in case' moments] tapping Opt 5 times will switch on Mouse Keys. Alternatively, if you run out of other options, try to re-pair from Recovery [or before recovery] M1's have a different way of setting this up - see support.apple.com/en-gb/guide/mac-help/mchl82829c17/mac
    – Tetsujin
    Dec 1, 2021 at 8:19
  • @Tetsujin it's an Intel iMac. The Bluetooth works fine everywhere except the recovery screen too. I eventually had to dig for a wired mouse to click the button on the dialog, and once it was installed the mouse was already paired and working. Go figure... :/
    – Hakanai
    Dec 5, 2021 at 1:47

2 Answers 2


This is not an intentional thing, but when the pairing records can’t be retrieved from a keychain, you will need a physical keyboard and mouse to self-rescue here. Setting up remote access to recovery isn’t worth the time for most situations.

  • The last sentence in the question still applies, in my opinion. Supposing I were physically incapable of using a mouse, now what? It really seems like macOS' accessibility is a joke.
    – Hakanai
    May 16, 2022 at 23:46
  • Someone has to interact with every Mac out of the box. Operating when recovery fails (and most times this pairing works in recovery in my experience) sometime will need a pointing device and someone to operate it.
    – bmike
    May 17, 2022 at 0:32

Press return. If that doesn't work, try tab + return

  • Welcome to Ask Different but pls read the question a bit more carefully before writing an answer. It states in the OP that Tab or Shift-Tab doesn't work. It's also obvious that pressing Return has been tried.
    – Alper
    May 14, 2022 at 19:57

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