I own a first generation MacBook Air and this has bothered me since the beginnings.

When I bought this thing, I was sure I'm not going to carry a DVD drive. I don't use it. WiFi has worked pretty well for me so far and in fact, lack of optical drive was the least problem I had with it (the worst was the heat and CPU frequency reduction).

But there's a useless eject key right in a place suited for a great delete key (the real delete, in PC terminology, of course). It'll help a lot when you're developing in Xcode. I feel it's handled at a lower level than standard keyboard shortcuts. Is there any way to remap it to delete?

  • The real delete is called forward delete on a Mac. But that doesn't help you of course. ;-)
    – Arjan
    Jul 15, 2009 at 15:29
  • @Arjan, Mac is screwed up when it comes to productivity.
    – Pacerier
    Aug 22, 2017 at 22:51

4 Answers 4


Not related to remapping, but Ctrl D will do a forward delete in most OS X text fields.

  • 1
    Ack, I wouldn't want to get into the habit of typing <kbd>ctrl D</kbd> or I'd type it at the command line...
    – Ether
    Dec 13, 2009 at 8:19
  • 1
    does forward delete on command line too. It doesn't send EOF unless you're at the end of the line.
    – cobbal
    Dec 17, 2009 at 8:01
  • this is saviour, fn+delete is always stressful for hands May 23, 2016 at 10:38

I have no experience with the application myself, but perhaps DoubleCommand can help you?


According to their website, KeyRemap4MacBook should be able to map the Eject button to a forward delete.

This MacRumors forum also has a thread on the same subject.

  • It doesn't support eject key.
    – mmx
    Jul 15, 2009 at 9:11
  • You may be able to edit the source so it does: I use a custom version of DoubleCommand that maps Caps Lock to Escape, for instance. Jul 15, 2009 at 10:43
  • 1
    KeyRemap4MacBook (together with NoEjectDelay) works but the problem is, you can't hold eject to delete a long string. It just removes a single character each time.
    – mmx
    Aug 5, 2009 at 22:56

I also dislike using fn for any key, so I basically stopped using Forward Delete altogether. When I need the Forward Delete I often hold down Shift and use the cursor keys to make a selection, and then press Delete. Actually, I do this for every text I want to delete -- those cursor keys go into all directions. :-)

  • Wow, apparently I down-voted this, but I have no recollection of doing so. And now it's too late to undo it. Sorry :( Nov 29, 2009 at 22:27
  • You don't have to shift select. Just do rightkey and delete. For multiple chars, its faster to fly to the location using win/opt arrow and then followed by win/opt delete. Shift key is annoying.
    – Pacerier
    Aug 22, 2017 at 22:56

Karabiner (which replaced KeyRemap4MacBook) does provide a means to remap the Eject key. Just tested it with El Capitan GM, and it works fine.

  • And like karabiner says: the eject key has a delay. Use NoEjectDelay to get rid of the delay.
    – Cristan
    Aug 5, 2016 at 9:19
  • I don't find the eject key in the simple modification list Jan 11, 2018 at 13:49

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.