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I'm having a problem with Microsoft Office 2013 overriding some of the media control keys on my keyboard.

The keyboard has all the normal keys to control my media player (I'm using MediaMonkey): track forward, track back, play/pause, volume up/down, mute. When I'm using almost any program, all the keys work normally, but whenever I'm in Word or Excel, the play/pause, forward and back keys are all disabled. I'm not experiencing problems in SQL Server Studio, or in any of the lightweight built-in programs like Notepad or Calculator.

I thought it might just be an issue with my laptop (an Alienware M18x), but the problem persisted when I installed a wireless keyboard (Logitech Wireless Combo MK520).

Any ideas?

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Try This First

I think I found your answer. The issue is described in this forum post.

In there is a knowledge base article that describes the issue and ways to address it.

If That Fails...

I had a similar issue with my ASUS laptop in MediaMonkey. Except for me, those media controls worked for limited applications (just not MediaMonkey). I did some research and discovered other people had a similiar issues. I got lucky, some guy created a utility to allow you to remap some of the keys. Not sure how. It was called AsusNbKeys.

Things I would check out:

  1. Does your Alienware M18x come with any soft-copy or hard-copy manual? Usually these will cover what all the special function keys do (and hopefully how you can modify them if needed).
  2. Try searching the internet with your computer model in exact quotes and the specific issue (that's how I lucked out).
  3. If all else fails, install AutoHotkey. You can use it to assign the operations you want and even set these as Global Hotkeys which will override other applications.

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