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I am running Windows 7 and began experiencing keyboard lag in most applications, and it seems to be getting worse. Certain websites are the worst - on some, I can type a sentence, take my hands off the keyboard, and watch the characters continue to appear on the screen for several seconds. Others are not as bad, but still noticeable and annoying. I just started noticing it in non-browser applications (e.g. Outlook) as well.

I've disabled all extensions in Firefox, rebooted my machine, and that did nothing. There is nothing using much memory or cpu cycles, even when the lag is occurring.

This is a machine at work with very strict controls over what can be installed, so the chances of any kind of malware are very slim. I don't believe anything as been installed since before the problem started.

What could be causing this, and/or what can I do to debug?

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12 Answers 12

I had this problem yesterday and found a load of forum posts and blog posts that give various answers. However, not one had the definitive answers, so I wrote a detailed post at http://www.thedesignguys.co.uk/keyboard-lag-slow-typing-solution which gives you a step by step fix. Have a great day all!!

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7  
No response from that website, can you post a summary of the key points here? –  RedGrittyBrick Aug 6 '12 at 9:34

Try using another keyboard on the same computer. If you are only experiencing lag with the first keyboard, then it is probably not an application that is the culprit.

If the keyboard is wireless it could be due to bad wireless connections and can lead to the keyboard lag or missing key presses altogether. (Even if the wireless receiver isn't very far from the keyboard.)

Here are the steps I would take to narrow down the problem:

  1. Test out another keyboard on that computer. If there are the same results, then it is a computer problem.

  2. Test out the keyboard on another computer. If the results appear on the new computer, it is a keyboard problem.

  3. Test the keyboard with a different USB port.

  4. Are there special drivers for this keyboard? Check the manufacturer's website to see if there are updates available.

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1  
If you're going to suggest that it's the keyboard, please explain how it's possible that this problem only occurs for some applications. –  Nuzzolilo Feb 11 at 19:32
    
@Nuzzolilo Jer did not list any applications in which the keyboard ran as expected. I suspected the problem persisted in all use cases and is more noticeable in some than in others. –  Gaʀʀʏ Feb 11 at 22:22
    
Do you think that a keyboard hardware issue could cause Visual Studio 2013 to have input lag, but not notepad? That's the issue I'm having. –  Nuzzolilo Feb 11 at 23:09

Generally it would be related to VGA (or even screen) lag such as low frame rates during high processor loads when your VGA card is integrated and shares the processor capabilities. If it is not the case, Windows have some configurations that would affect this kind of performance issue. This link provides a lot of tips to troubleshoot input lag, mst are only for games, but another are general for input lag that may help you. Check if you didn't enabled any of these configurations mistakenly:

Windows Vista/7 Mouse Options
    Go to the Start > Control Panel > Mouse
    Click on the Pointer Options tab
    Ensure that Display Pointer Trails, Smart Move, and Acceleration in Games options are disabled (some of these options may not be displayed, depending upon which version of Windows you are using)
    Exit the Mouse Properties window by clicking OK to save your changes

Windows Vista/7 Accessibility Options
    Go to the Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access Center
    Click on Make the keyboard easier to use
    Ensure that Turn on StickyKeys, Turn on FilterKeys, and Turn on ToggleKeys options are disabled
    Click on Set up Stickey Keys and Set up Filter Keys and uncheck the Turn on Sticky Keys when SHIFT is pressed five times and Turn on Filter Keys when SHIFT is pressed for 8 seconds options and click Apply
    Exit the Ease of Access Center window by clicking OK to save your changes

Also, it would be related to the keyboard chip(embedded), keyboard cable or even USB/PS2 interfaces. I would check with another keyboard if the same behavior still happends..

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I had this problem too. I was furiously typing harder each time because it was severely lagging, but then I realised that my Filter Keys function was accidentally switched on. Turning Filter Keys off made the keyboard revert back to normal.

My computer is running on Windows 7, so maybe it might help to check.

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Thanks to "tseg" for your suggestion about USB power-saving. Whilst this was not a complete solution, turning off power-save on the one USB hub that had it switched on did make a significant difference, even though it did not solve the problem entirely (something else is also obviously amiss).

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Delete your toolbars in your browsers (i.e. Yahoo, Google, Bing, Ask, Conduit, etc.). They are constantly transmitting information through the Internet and slowing you down. I had the exact same problem and couldn't believe it worked- but it did.

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I had keyboard lag, particularly noticeable when using IE10. 2 things I found. #1: Just because I could, I had previously overclocked my AMD CPU just the slightest bit. It turns out this can cause keyboard lag. I removed the overclocking. #2: Under device manager under USB root hub (1 for each USB on the system) I went to Properties and disabled Energy Savings mode. The latest computers are very aggressive deactivating things not in use and my USB connected wireless keyboard seemed to be paying the price as a noticeable delay with my key board strokes occurred on occasion as the USB was "powered up". My keyboard is now responsive.

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Don't mess around with add-ons or settings. They have NOTHING to do with keyboard lag with wireless keyboards. If the keyboard lag suddenly disappears and the keyboard to screen action is instantaneous, when the neighbor with his Corvette with Radar detector drives away, the problem is obviously not in your computer, but interference with the wireless transmission.

Try a wired keyboard, or if you don't have one, move the transmitter closer to the keyboard. You can try shielding them from interference. Some Remote Control devices also interfere. If taking the battery out of a remote control device suddenly makes the keyboard behave, you found the culprit.

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Out of sheer frustration I changed my home page from Bing to Google chrome, BINGO it worked, I am not a computer person, so I don't understand why this fixed the problem, but I am able to type at normal speed now.

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I have an HP that suddenly started to dely typing. I could only type about one character a second. My touchpad was messed up. I had trouble installing star craft 2 (the zerg one) and I couldn't install mechwarrior.

I went to microsoft and updated my c++ package (I followed a link)

After that I could install all the software and my keyboard works like a charm.

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You really should provide the link if you want your answer to be up to par... –  Nuzzolilo Feb 11 at 19:37

You'll never believe me , but i noticed that ipad 2 with magnetic cover and wifi connection beside the wireless keyboard made it so slow and repeat keystrokes.

Can't explain why , but moving the ipad fixed the problem !

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Disable all the 'Add Ons" or "Extensions" in the web browser that you are using that you don't need. These will be found in the settings icon at top right hand corner in most browsers. This often cures the problem.

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