How to disable your keyboard Windows key

The Windows key is an extremely useful keyboard shortcut tool, unless you're a gamer. We'll show you the manual and automated methods for disabling (and re-enabling) the Windows key on any keyboard.

Microsoft Fix it program to disable Windows key
Screenshot by Ed Rhee


Enable the Windows key

Step 1: Download the Microsoft Fix it program 50464 from Microsoft at http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=9738718.

Step 2: Double-click on the file you just downloaded, MicrosoftFixit50464.msi, and click Run to install the fix.

Step 3: Follow the short installation prompts and restart your computer.


Manual method

Caution: Please take care when working in the registry. Mistakes made in the registry can cause serious problems. If you are not comfortable working in the registry, consider using the automated method.


Disable the Windows key

Step 1: Click Start, then type regedt32 in the search box.

Click image to enlarge Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 3: Click on Keyboard Layout, then in the Registry Editor menu, click on Edit, New, Binary Value.

New binary value
Click image to enlarge Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 4: Name the new entry as Scancode Map.

Step 5: Double-click on the new entry and type in 00000000000000000300000000005BE000005CE000000000 as the value data, then click OK. You must type it in manually; copying and pasting will not work. It might be easier to look at it in pairs, as three rows of 16 digits:
00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00
03 00 00 00 00 00 5B E0
00 00 5C E0 00 00 00 00

Edit binary value
Click image to enlarge Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 6: Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer.


Enable the Windows key

Step 1: Click Start, then type regedt32 in the search box.

Step 2: Double-click on HKEY_LOCAL_ MACHINE, then SYSTEM, CurrentControlSet, Control.

Step 3: Click on Keyboard Layout and right-click on Scancode Map. Click Delete then click Yes.

Delete registry key
Click image to enlarge Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 4: Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer.


There you go, gamers. Now you can frag away without having to worry about that pesky Windows key. Good luck!

About the author

Ed Rhee, a freelance writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area, is an IT veteran turned stay-at-home-dad of two girls. He focuses on Android devices and applications while maintaining a review blog at techdadreview.com.

 

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