Ok, so I've made the switch from primarily Windows to primarily OS X on my MacBook Pro. However, I still need to occasionally boot into Windows or have Windows running in VMWare Fusion. This is causing stress injuries in my hands and head because of the differences in keyboard handling.

For instance, the Apple key (cmd) is used for most key combinations (copy/paste/open/save/close) while the ctrl key is used in a similar way on Windows. Worse, the ctrl key is located further left on the keyboard than on typical keyboards, meaning my poor baby finger is being used more than it should be.

So what I'd like to do is figure out a way to swap the ctrl and Apple/Windows key while in Windows. I've done a preliminary scour of the web and turned up a keyboard remapping utility from Microsoft that sadly doesn't touch the 'special' keys. I also turned up an ancient thread about twiddling with the registry, but I don't want to do that unless I need to. Lazyweb?

Update: A few scant hours from posting this, I got a reply from Ian below that does exactly what I want. With SharpKeys for Windows, you can re-map your Left Windows key to the Left Ctrl key and get that synergy I was looking for. Now the Apple-C works as Copy on both OS X and Windows! Beautiful!

Image showing how to map the left Apple/Cmd key to the left Ctrl key in Windows using SharpKeys

Note that there is a right Apple/Cmd key if you're a big Windows key user (Windows+E brings up the Explorer, for instance).

My only fear with all this is that I will hobbled when I go to someone else's Windows computer. Small price to pay for sanity on my own computer though.

§512 · December 12, 2008 · Microsoft, Software, Technology, Windows · Tags: , , , · [Print]

2 Comments to “Keyboard Synergy on a Macbook Pro”

  1. Ian says:

    Not sure if you ran across these guys…


    Remaps via the Registry, but makes it a little more digestible.



    App that runs in the background for keyboard/mouse macros. Probably not as snappy as the registry.



    Remaps your MacOX keys, so they could behave like windows.


  2. Thanks Ian (ah, now I know which Ian), I tried SharpKeys and it did the trick (updated my post to reflect this).