Useful Shortcuts When Your Key Board Keys Stop Working
By on December 10th, 2007

Many a times certain keys on the keyboard may stop working and it becomes difficult for you to type. In such cases the only alternative is to buy a new keyboard.

There is an alternative though if you do not want to spend money on buying a new keyboard. To make use of this alternative you will have to turn the Num Lock to on and use the Alt key to type in the characters you want to.


For example when you can press and hold the Alt Key and type in 65 on the numeric keypad it will output the character "A". In this case the number 65 is the ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange) equivalent of the character "A". In case you want to type in "a" you will have to use hold down the Alt Key and type in 92 on the numeric pad.

You can output any type of characters using this trick. This is specifically helpful when are stuck with broken or unusable keys and you may want to delay buying a new keyboard.

For a complete list of all such Alt Codes for typing in characters you can download the Alt Codes Reference Sheet compiled by

Would this be helpful to you if your keys don’t work. Do let me know through your valuable comments. If you have a question that you want answered feel free to contact us and we will definitely try to help you out.

Image under CC license from Flickr.

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Author: Keith Dsouza Google Profile for Keith Dsouza
I am the editor-in-chief and owner of Techie Buzz. I love coding and have contributed to several open source projects in the past. You can know more about me and my projects by visiting my Personal Website. I am also a social networking enthusiast and can be found active on twitter, you can follow Keith on twitter @keithdsouza. You can click on my name to visit my Google+ profile.

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  • websavvy

    Hi Keith, I was in a friend’s house one time and some of the keys on his keyboads got stuck. I used the alternate codes and was able to answer important e-mails. Alt-keys are useful especially in emergency cases where a replacement keyboard is not immediately available.

    • keith

      Yups websavvy, I learnt this trick quite some time back when I was in school. Now that its refreshed back I will post about another cool tip using the alt keys which I had learnt in school.

  • Pingback: How to use osk - onscreen keyboard to manage keyboard problems? | Techblissonline Dot Com


    Keith, I have linked your post….cheers, Rajesh

  • Alfred

    been more than 30+ situations when ive had to work without a keyboard.
    On-screen keyboards are useful too. They are especially good when you suspect keylogers

    • keith

      Yea I do agree that using on screen keyboards is a better alternative.

  • dinesh padsala

    old pc p4; ama; duol core;core 2 duo;

    • dinesh padsala

      old lcd

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