Keyboard: Apple Wireless Keyboard (model number MC184LL/B)

System: Macbook Pro Early 2011 running OS X 10.8

The keyboard gets detected and when I try to pair it, the system asks to enter some numbers through the keyboard.

However when I press the key (on the wireless keyboard) nothing happens, the only key that seems to work (i.e. to move to the next key in the code) is 0. I can also press enter to confirm but it always fails (since the only code I can enter is 0000...0).

I've also tried pairing from the bluetooth preference and changing the passcode option. However this won't work either.

Any ideas? The keyboard was paired with another MacBook Pro (I don't have access to it anymore). Is there any method to 'reset' the keyboard to factory settings?


4 Answers 4


If only one number key is working, it sounds like a hardware issue. My brother had a wireless keyboard that flaked out and only certain keys functioned (although in his case it was from a liquid spill).

Do you have any other Bluetooth-capable device to test with? Any iOS device can pair with the keyboard to test it.

  • Seems numeric keys from 1 to 9 are dead, got it paired by using '0000' as the code. Every other key is working. Sounds like a hardware issue as you said, any chance that this could be battery related? I've found that my batteries are 1.2v (rechargeable), normal batteries are 1.5v, it's a long shot, but...
    – aromero
    Commented Sep 19, 2012 at 23:36
  • Changed batteries, same issue. Tested on pc with windows and also Android mobile phone, same issue. It's a hardware problem, thanks for your help
    – aromero
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 0:38
  • No problem, if my question solved your issue, please mark it as answered (the checkmark).
    – robmathers
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 1:11

For posterity, some troubleshooting on this exact same problem...

After reading the question and answer here I was ready to throw the keyboard in the trash, but then thought that if two people have such an odd failure maybe its just a bug that one can work around.

So, after being unable to type anything but 0 and enter and watching the connection attempt fail, I clicked a button on the failure screen that allowed me to then choose an alternate passkey. It was pre-populated with 0000. I played around with connecting again but the enter key would not highlight until I typed eight zeros instead of four. I tried a few times and then noticed for whatever reason the custom setting was back to eight random digits.

I decided to start over, clearing out the list of bluetooth devices. On my next attempt, I typed 00000000 and enter for the passkey and waited for the failure. I then selected the custom passkey setting which was now populated as 0000. I reattempted and was asked to type 0000. I did so, and even though the screen did not show I could hit enter - presumably because it wanted four more digits - I hit enter anyway. And it paired.

I am typing this with that very keyboard. Sounds great. Except this: the keys 1 through 9 still do not work, nor do the symbols on those keys when holding shift. Note I copied/pasted the one and nine digit from elsewhere into this answer :-)

So sad.


I had the same problem: an Apple Bluetooth Keyboard would not pair with an iMac after having been paired with a MacBook Pro. The Bluetooth pairing dialog would appear with a 6-digit code, but the only key that worked was Return/Enter.

Resolved by resetting the firmware as explained by Dave Meehan in How to Reset an Apple Wireless Bluetooth Keyboard, Mouse or Trackpad (Troubleshooting Pairing and Other Common Problems):

  1. Switch off the keyboard by holding down the power button for at least 3 seconds
  2. Click the Bluetooth icon in the menu bar
  3. Click on "Set Up Bluetooth Device" or "Open Bluetooth Preferences"
  4. Turn on the keyboard by holding down the power button, BUT DO NOT LET GO OF THE POWER BUTTON. It must be kept held down through the entire process.
  5. The Setup Assistant will find the keyboard, so click the name of the keyboard, and then click on "Continue". Make sure you are still holding the power button down.
  6. You will be prompted for the Pairing Code. You can now release the power button, type the pairing code on the keyboard and then press return. There will be a slight delay whilst the pairing completes (a few seconds)
  7. The keyboard will now be Paired, and should work as expected (if it produces wrong characters for keypresses you may have the wrong language setting on your Mac, see below).

I had the same problem spent 4 hour nothing work so I ran my finger back and forth about 10 times across the numbers changed the batteries and I am typing this on that keyboard know connected to iMac numbers are working but not always. crazy don't know why the numbers worked to enter passkey but it did for what it's worth hope this helps

  • It's hard to tell how this answers the question. Is your answer, "change your keyboard's batteries?" Or is your answer "I had the same problem but it stopped and I don't know why"? (That's not actually an answer.)
    – Wildcard
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 3:17

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