The ctrl key of my MacBook 6,1, OS X 10.6.8, got stuck by a water hazard. It's recognized as permanently pressed by the system.

Is there any way to tell the system that it is not? I'm thinking of a simple switch in memory or the like: can this be done and how?

Follow ups:

  1. Disabling ctrl key by using KeyRemap4Macbook mostly solves the problem. However since the remapping is loaded after user login I cannot use the keyboard for typing the initial password on the login screen. Can you force the remapping to be loaded at another runlevel?
  2. So now I don't have a ctrl key and I tried using PCKeyboardHack to remap CapsLock to Ctrl_L. This appears not to work probably due to KeyRemap4Macbook overriding the CapsLock remap. Mapping it to Ctrl_R does not work as intended either: whenever pressing CapsLock it fires a CTRL_R event but you can't press any key combinations because the keydown state isn't held.

Any thoughts about solving these issues? Switching to automatic user login should only be considered a last resort ...

1 Answer 1


You can do that with KeyRemap4MacBook:

The remapping is defined in control.xml:

  <name>Disable Control_L</name>
  <autogen>--KeyToKey-- KeyCode::CONTROL_L, KeyCode::VK_NONE</autogen>

It also disables caps lock if you've assigned it to control in the keyboard preference pane. You could change it to the right control with PCKeyboardHack.

  • Yay, that did the trick, thank you so much! I have two follow-ups, though, which I will add to the question, but thank you so far, very appreciated.
    – pong
    Sep 1, 2012 at 12:30

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