Laptops forum

General discussion

A few keys don't work on my laptop

by 1Chris / April 20, 2008 7:49 AM PDT

I got a Dell Latitude CPt almost a year ago at a local used computer store. Had probs with it right away and turned out those folks are low life. They sold me some more memory and when I defragged it ran at a decent pace for what it is.
Anyway, I rarely used it for about 7 months and now I really need it for a trip. The i, k, and 8 keys are non functional. Can anyone give me a clue as to how and if I can fix this myself, is this common, what causes this?


Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: A few keys don't work on my laptop
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: A few keys don't work on my laptop
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
Try an external keyboard and if that works.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 20, 2008 8:07 AM PDT

Buy a new keyboard and replace the laptop's keyboard. About 2 out of 5 lightbulbs rating for difficulty.


Collapse -
External Kbd works
by 1Chris / April 20, 2008 8:39 AM PDT

Hey, Thanks!

I have a bit of experience with desktops, not w/laptops yet. Is there much to replacing the keyboard? Know of a good sources/ballpark cost?

Thanks again, Chris

Collapse -
Ebay and well under 100 bucks.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 20, 2008 8:43 AM PDT
In reply to: External Kbd works

Worth every penny for laptops.

Collapse -
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 20, 2008 8:44 AM PDT

Over at are service manuals on how to replace such things. Sorry but I don't duplicate such here.

Collapse -
Now it's working - go figure
by 1Chris / April 23, 2008 1:41 AM PDT

I was just about to get a new keyboard, and decided to try it one more time in other applications. I fired ye olde Dell up - and now those keys are working - in all applications. Any idea what might be going on here?

Collapse -
Contacts fail over time.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 23, 2008 2:55 AM PDT

Sometimes they start working again. Without x-ray or other investigative tools we may never know exactly why.

Collapse -
Now they're working, now they're not
by 1Chris / May 4, 2008 7:59 AM PDT

Every once in a great while, these three keys will work on a boot up. Makes me think it might be more than contacts. Any other ideas?

Collapse -
This is why we have spares.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 4, 2008 11:16 AM PDT

We can swap them out. There is another cause but far more costly. The keyboard interface circuit on the mainboard can be heat sensitive causing odd works than doesn't complaints. We know to try the externals and replace the keyboard to sniff this out. Some owners will reload the OS and more until they tire of the issue.

Popular Forums
Computer Help 51,912 discussions
Computer Newbies 10,498 discussions
Laptops 20,411 discussions
Security 30,882 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 21,253 discussions
Windows 10 1,672 discussions
Phones 16,494 discussions
Windows 7 7,855 discussions
Networking & Wireless 15,504 discussions


Samsung Galaxy S8's major makeover

This year's flagship phone gets a sexy new design and Bixby, a house-made digital assistant.