10 Replies Latest reply: Feb 2, 2013 5:04 PM by NCP10
NCP10 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I'm on year two as a new Mac user, enjoying my MBP for general computing needs.  I do very much miss the wonderful keys present on all Windows machines:  Home, End, Page Up, Page Down, and really important, Print Screen (alt tab to print active window).  Is there a virtual keyboard which could bring these functions to the (a bit lacking for a Windows user ;o() Apple keyboard?

 

Thanks in advance,

 

Noel


MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.4)
  • 1. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,340 points)

    Home: Fn - left arrow or command-up

    End: Fn - right arrow or command-down

    Page Up: fn - up arrow

    Page Down: fn - down arrow

    Print Screen:

         Shift-Command-3 (access the resulting screenshot on the Desktop to print).

         Shift-Command-4 (selection will be saved in a screenshot file)

         Shift-Command-4 followed by pressing space (screenshot of highlighted window)

  • 2. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,340 points)

    You can also enable the Input menu (in the Language & Text system preferences, under the "Input Sources" tab), and then check the option to enable the "Keyboard & Character Viewer." Then select "Show Keyboard Viewer" from the menu and you will have a virtual keyboard in which you can see the current input options. If you hold combinations of modifier keys (Shift, Control, Option, etc.) you will see the input options change in accordance with these.

  • 3. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    NCP10 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I guess the answer is No, there is not a Windows Virtual Keyboard.  Thank you for the clarifying Home/End.  Having to hit 3 keys to do screen printing is very troublesome to me as a longtime Windows user.  It is such a common function to print individual windows or the whole screen etc, copy to clipboard, etc, that I'm puzzled why they left this to a 3 key combination.  Is there maybe a way to map the 3 key combo to a key perhaps?  Thanks for your rapid replies.

     

    Noel

  • 4. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,340 points)

    You can change the hotkey to whatever you'd like. To do this, go to the Keyboard Shortcuts section of the Keyboard system preferences and then choose the Screen Shots category. Then double-click the current shortcut and press the hotkey option you'd like to use instead.

     

    You can also use Automator to create a service that will take a screenshot and then immediately print it, and then bind this service to a custom hot-key of its own so the system will behave more like Windows if that's what you prefer.

     

    I generally print screenshots by hitting shift-control-command-4, which will save the screenshot to the clipboard. Then open preview (using Spotlight with Command-Space is a quick way to do this) and press Command-N to create a new image from teh clipboard. From here you can annotate it, crop or otherwise edit it before printing or moving it elsewhere. While it may seem like a lot at first, its far more versatile than simply printing what's displayed. I gave up big time on using the Windows print screen option and far prefer these details that OS X offers.

  • 5. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,340 points)

    I guess the answer is No, there is not a Windows Virtual Keyboard. 

     

    As for this point, there is a virtual (onscreen) keyboard available. I mentioned how to enable and activate this in my prior post. Here is a screenshot of the keyboard...

     

    vkeyboard.png

  • 6. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    NCP10 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    You've been kind and detailed to reply, however please note we were not looking for another Apple keyboard as a virtual keyboard but a Windows virtual keyboard so that one could choose the Print Scrn button and have it function as it does in Windows.  There is nothing simpler than clicking the print screen button (prints to clipboard) then being able to paste directly into anything, Word, Outlook mail, etc.  When I need to edit, crop, etc, I paste from the print scrn button to any image editor and all's well.

     

    Thanks again,

     

    Noel

  • 7. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    mns579 Level 3 Level 3 (680 points)

    As Topher says, Cmd-Control-Shift-4 copies the selected area to the clipboard. (And Cmd-Control-Shift-3 copies the entire screen to the clipboard.)  Change one or both keyboard shortcuts to something that requires less digital gymnastics--unused function keys, for instance--and I think you'll have what you're seeking.

     

    As for the Home, etc., keys, you'll find them on a full-size Mac keyboard: http://store.apple.com/us/product/MB110LL/B/apple-keyboard-with-numeric-keypad?f node=56

  • 8. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    NCP10 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Is this guy on the 15" MBP?  If so that's good to know and may prompt me to go there next time.  Pretty surprised no enterprising programmer hasn't created a full size Windows virtual keyboard for MBP though.  Seems like it would be a very small project as projects go.

  • 9. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    mns579 Level 3 Level 3 (680 points)

    Yes, my Mac of choice is a 15" MBP, but Apple's laptops (even in the discontinued 17" size) do not include Home, etc., keys. Most of the time, I run my laptop in clamshell mode connected to a full-size Apple keyboard. I often need those extra keys--and a keypad--immediately available for the kind of work that I do. For me, it's worth the extra $50 to have a full keyboard in front of me rather than to press a multifinger combo to generate a virtual keystroke.

     

    If you do want to customize an Apple compact keyboard in ways to make it more like Windows keyboards, have a look into freeware KeyRemap4MacBook (works for more than MacBooks, by the way), http://pqrs.org/macosx/keyremap4macbook. It currently offers 1822 predefined keyboard customizing options and, if that's not enough, provides instructions that allow you to build your own.

  • 10. Re: Windows Virtual Keyboard on Mac OSX Lion?
    NCP10 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Great, thanks for that.  I did follow thru w/ remapping my main ones to replace print screen so I am using F9 for that and although there is no direct equivalent for holding the Alt key down to capture the active window the crazy 4-key (w/ spacebar) is ok.  I assigned the 3 keys to F10, then click the space bar after moving over the active window.  I think this will probably be good enough for me.  Since I use this MBP for portability I wouldn't be wanting a separate keyboard.  I do like the MBP a lot even though I haven't taken the time to really learn it, esp from a trouble-shooting point of view--I'd be completely lost!  I am proficient in building and supporting Windows desktops but that's another world.