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HP Notebook PCs - Notebook Keyboard Troubleshooting (Windows 8)

This document applies to HP and Compaq notebook computers with Windows 8.
Use this information to troubleshoot common keyboard problems on notebook computers.
 note:
If you are not using the latest version of Windows 8, some graphics and information in this document may vary. You can get the latest version from the Microsoft Store.
Pressing keys does nothing (keyboard is not working)
If your keyboard is not working:
  1. Shut down the computer and restart.
  2. Press the Esc key repeatedly to see if a startup menu opens.
    • If a setup menu does not open, the integrated keyboard hardware is not working. The integrated keyboard in the notebook should be serviced or replaced. To continue using the notebook PC, connect a USB-wired keyboard to a USB port and restart the computer. Contact HP for further assistance.
    • If a setup menu opens, use the arrow keys to navigate the menus. If these keys are working in the startup menu, but then fail when Windows loads, the problems are probably occurring in Windows.
    Continue with the steps that follow to uninstall and reinstall the keyboard software in Device Manager.
  3. Turn on the computer.
  4. At the Start screen, type device manager to open the Search charm, and then select Device Manager from the Search results.
    Figure : Device Manager
    Device Manager on the Search screen
  5. Click View and select Show Hidden Devices.
  6. Click the arrow next to Keyboards, right-click the keyboard device name, and then select Uninstall to remove the device from Windows.
    Figure : Show hidden devices
    Show hidden devices in Device Manager
  7. Continue removing device names in the Keyboards category until all device names have been uninstalled.
  8. Restart the notebook:
    1. Move your mouse pointer to the right side of the screen. When the charms bar appears, click Settings.
      Figure : Settings charm
      Settings charm in menu
      The Settings charm opens.
    2. Click Power, and select Restart.
      Figure : Restart
      Restart selection in Change PC settings
      Wait for the computer to restart and boot into Windows.
  9. The keyboard should now work correctly. Test the keyboard for key or hardware failures using HP Hardware Diagnostic tools that come with your computer.
Key presses are slow to respond
If there is a short delay from the time a key is pressed to the time the character displays on the screen, the Filter Keys function might be activated. The Filter Keys function provides a greater range of key press options to fine-tune key delays and prevent inadvertent key presses. To disable Filter Keys and return to the default keyboard behavior, use the following steps:
  1. At the Start screen, type change keyboard to open the Search charm, and then select Change how your keyboard works from the Search results.
    Figure : Change how your keyboard works
    Change how your keyboard works on the Search screen
  2. At the Make the Keyboard easier to use screen, remove the selection from Turn on Filter Keys. Then click Set up Filter Keys.
    Figure : Set up Filter Keys
     Turn on Filter Keys and Set up Filter Keys
  3. On the Set up Filter Keys page, remove the selection from Turn on Filter Keys when SHIFT is pressed for 8 seconds to disable the Filter Keys keyboard shortcut.
    Figure : Disabling the Filter Keys keyboard shortcut
    Turn on Filter Keys box
  4. Click OK, and then close the Ease of Access Center.
    The keys should now be more responsive.
Pressing a key once types several characters
If two or more characters appear when pressing a key, use the following steps to adjust the key repeat delay:
  1. At the Start screen, type keyboard settings to open the Search charm, and then select Keyboard from the Search results.
    Figure : Keyboard
    Keyboard on the Search screen
  2. On the Keyboard Properties screen, drag the Repeat delay slider to Long, and then click OK to save changes.
    Figure : Changing the Character Repeat delay setting
    Keyboard Repeat delay setting
Computer beeps while typing
If the computer sometimes beeps while you are typing, Toggle Keys or Sticky Keys is active. The Toggle Keys can emit a beep when the Caps Lock keys are pressed. The Sticky Keys function can emit a beep when the Ctrl, Alt, Shift, and Caps Lock keys are pressed. Use the following steps to disable Sticky Keys and Toggle Keys:
  1. At the Start screen, type change keyboard to open the Search charm, and then select Change how your keyboard works from the Search results.
    Figure : Change how your keyboard works
    Change how your keyboard works on the Search screen
  2. At the Make the Keyboard easier to use screen, remove the selection from Turn on Sticky Keys if already selected. Then click Set up Sticky keys.
    Figure : Sticky Keys
    Sticky Keys toggle
    The Set up Sticky Keys window opens.
  3. Remove the selection from Turn on Sticky Keys when SHIFT is pressed five times to disable the Sticky Keys keyboard shortcut.
    Figure : Disabling the Sticky Keys keyboard shortcut
    Disabling the Sticky Keys shortcut
  4. Click OK to save changes and return to the Make the keyboard easier to use window.
  5. Remove the selection from Turn on Toggle Keys.
    If selected, remove the selection from Turn on Toggle Keys by holding down the NUM LOCK key for 5 seconds.
    Figure : Changing the Toggle Keys settings
    Turn on Toggle Keys
  6. Click OK, and then close the Ease of Access Center.
    The beeps no longer sound.
Wrong characters appear when typing, changing keyboard language, or Dvorak
If the wrong characters appear when you are typing, or you are trying to use a different keyboard, use the following steps to synchronize Windows to the type of keyboard you are using:
  1. At the Start screen, type control panel to open the Search charm, and then select Control Panel from the Search results.
    Figure : Control Panel
    Control Panel on the Search screen
  2. In the Control Panel search box, type keyboard layout.
  3. Under Language, click Change input methods.
    Figure : Change input methods
    Change input methods in keyboard layout window
  4. Next to your primary language, click Options.
    Figure : Change your language preferences
    Options box in Change your language preferences
    The Language options window opens.
  5. Click Add an input method to see a list of keyboard layout options.
    Figure : Add an input method
    Add an input method link
  6. Select the desired keyboard layout from the list, and then click Add.
    Figure : Select a keyboard layout
    Dvorak keyboard layout
    The new keyboard layout is added to the Input method list in Language options.
  7. Click Save.
  8. Switch keyboard layouts by pressing the Windows + spacebar keys.
    The current selected language and keyboard layout are displayed in the Settings screen, in the taskbar on the Windows desktop, and in the bottom right corner of the sign-in screen when you sign in to Windows. To switch layouts using the on-screen interface, click the notification, and then select the desired language and keyboard layout:
    Figure : Language and keyboard layout notification in Settings
    Language and keyboard layout notification in Settings
    Figure : Language and keyboard layout notification in Windows desktop
    US English selection layout option
  9. The new keyboard can now be used. To add more keyboard layout options, repeat these steps.
     note:
    The keyboard layout settings also applies to the On-Screen Keyboard and the Windows Touch Keyboard.
Stuck notebook key
If a key is physically stuck in the down position, you might not have to replace the entire keyboard. Many keyboards have keys that can be removed by inserting a butter knife under one edge of the key and gently prying up on the top and bottom edge. After the key has been removed, using a swab with alcohol, clean the underside of the key and the key's slot in the keyboard. Replace the key by snapping it back into place.
 caution:
If the notebook is still under warranty and a key is stuck, you should contact HP to see if the notebook can be serviced before removing a key.
 caution:
To avoid damaging the pad under the key, insert the butter knife only 1/8 inch under the edge of the key.
Figure : Butter knife gently prying up on key, cotton swab cleaning key
Image of removing a key and cleaning under it.
Other tips to think about when encountering a stuck key:
  • Turn off the notebook and unplug the AC adapter before working on the keyboard.
  • If your notebook has a removable battery, remove the battery before removing the key.
  • If the key is stuck due to liquid or other substance getting into the keyboard, cleaning might be the only option.
  • Longer keys, such as spacebar and Enter, probably have a small metal rod for support. This rod must be inserted into the key and keyboard before replacing the key into the keyboard.
    Figure : Metal Rod connection point for the space bar
    Metal rod connections under the space bar
If a key cannot be unstuck, or the keyboard does not have keys that can be removed, service the computer.

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