I am working as a software developer in a non-english environment and I often need to switch keyboard layouts between "US English" (programming) and "Estonian" (general social interaction and creative/recreative/technical writing).

The need to constantly switch layouts while somewhat helpful is also a constant source of frustration.

The non-english keyboard does not have the symbols I need for my work (like ``~^<>|`) and some of the symbols while accessible are painfully out of the way.

The English US keyboard on the other hand does not have any support for my accented letters like õäöü.

I am wondering if there is a way to attach an external physical keyboard to my MacBook Pro and set it to a different keyboard layout than one for the built in layout.


You might create remappings using keyremap4macbook. It's a bit tricky to write your own mapping, but it allows to have rules that mappings are only active for specific devices.

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you may want to look at: http://dotdotcomorg.net/Mac/ for Dual Keyboard Support and this thread: http://forums.macrumors.com/archive/index.php/t-778484.html

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  • Not quite the same thing that I was looking for. I am more after a solution where two physical keyboards have both separate kayboard layout. So that I can use one for my native language editing and communication and the other for programming without having to constantly switch between keyboard mappings. – Roland Tepp Oct 21 '13 at 10:02

This might be helpful:


It's a little old of software (2007) but might still do the trick nicely. I'd grab the source and see if it will compile for mac.

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  • I find it interesting that someone might think that the reason they have not seen material in other languages beside English is that English has more words than other languages. Perhaps it is because your browser preference is set to English, you use google.com (as opposed to google.fr etc) and Google takes that into account. Also have you tried googling in the language you are not expecting to get any results? – Henno Jul 5 '13 at 10:50

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