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I recently spilled some water on my MacBook (mid-2010) keyboard and it shorted out several of the keys. Notably, control and left option don't work, and the system thinks that the left shift is permanently held down.

I plugged in an external USB keyboard and all keys work fine; there's only one problem:

The computer always starts in safe mode because the shift key is held down.

I've tried holding down other keys (escape, space, c to name a few) and the control key doesn't work so I can't try that. I also tried KeyRemap4Macbook but it doesn't work in safe mode and it doesn't seem to help on startup for me.

I can log in to Windows with no problems (with rEFIt) and I can browse the internet with no problems, but I can't program on the Mac OS side in safe mode (it's really slow). Which is mainly what I use this Macbook for.

Any ideas out there on how to avoid starting in safe mode?

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2 Answers 2

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Unless you get the keyboard repaired, it will think the shift key is being held down and you won't be able to avoid it. Any key remapping software only takes effect after it has finished booting; i.e. it will not do anything for you during the boot process when you need it.

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There's a similar question at Ask Different. As a workaround, you could hold some other key like option or space when starting up. Utilities like KeyRemap4MacBook aren't loaded during startup.

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