Disabling Keys in Windows

Well, I lost the use of my ancient Hewlett Packard AT keyboard finally. So now I have a shiny new (cheap) keyboard. It has buttons on it I don’t like. Namely the Windows key and the power key. My cats like to trod on the keyboard on the way to their perch on top of the monitor and for some reason it seems like they manage to miss every key but those two. So, is there a way I can disable certain keys from the control panel or something, or should I just rip 'em out with pliers?

Bonus round: I know there’s a lot of BS floating around about the safety of electronics but is it OK for my cats to sleep on top of the monitor? It’s not going to kill them or turn them into mutants or anything, is it?

How To Disable the Keyboard Windows Key.

This might help too:


Here’s a few links to utilities that will let you turn particular keys on and off:


And of course, PawSense, a little utility that is designed for just your problem, furry critters hopping about on the keyboard:


I’m pretty sure that if sleeping on top of a monitor was enough to mutate a kitty then office workers everywhere would be sprouting extra eyes and arms by now :slight_smile:

Thank you, thank you, a thousand times thank you!

Good stuff Valgard. One of the guys that works for me will actually pry off keys that he hates. I’ll have to send him your links.

The link starts off with a scary warning that basically says," before doing this, kiss your butt goodbye.Be prepared to re-install your entire system from scratch".

So play it safe, and do what I did a couple years ago: I just took a screwdriver, pried the damn key off, and have lived happily ever after.

That’s just the standard copy-pasted disclaimer that Microsoft (and everyone else) quotes when instructing you to modify the Registry. As long as you follow the instructions exactly, it’s fine. But yes, it is rather like a game of “Operation”. As Don Box once pointed out, “When you’re editing the Registry with regedit, you’ll note the lack of ‘Edit | Undo’ and ‘File | Save’.”

Cats are unlikely to be harmed by sleeping on top of the monitor, but the monitor is unlikely to appreciate the cat fur buildup inside. I built a shelf over my monitor for the cats to sleep on. It warms up from the heat given off by the monitor, and a folded towel gives them a softer surface and collects at least some of the fur. It won’t keep all the fur out, but it will reduce it a lot. (And the cats are less likely to slide off :slight_smile: )

Or you could get an LCD monitor. Not much heat and too darn thin for your cat to sleep on it anyhow.

To paraphrase Sir Laurence Olivier - “Try learning how to type, it’s so much easier” :slight_smile:

You can also install the Microsoft Intellitype Pro keyboard driver. It works fine with standard keyboards and the keyboard control panel applet let’s you configure the Windows keys.

Yep we put a small afghan on top to hold the fur, and judging from it’s nearly all-orange color (it was originally purple) it seems to be doing its job. I imagine that my children will find somewhere else to go when it is summertime though.

You buyin’? :wink:

It’s not bad for the cat, but it is bad for the monitor. In addition to fur dropping into the vents that was already mentioned, just blocking the vents in general with the cat or with any sort of cover (to keep the fur out, for example) will make the monitor overheat and will severely shorten the monitor’s expected life. Monitors don’t get nine lives either.

Don’t block the vents on your computer either, and if you do have pets it is probably a good idea to open up the computer case and vacuum it out probably at least once a year. If you aren’t sure how to safely do this or aren’t sure what is safe to touch and what isn’t inside the computer case, then this is something better done by a qualified tech.

Won mine at an MS conference.