I just purchased and received a new Inspiron laptop. I've found several posts on here about the FN key, but none seem to be addressing the simplest of issues, which is how do you make the F1-12 keys default to the F1-12 key as opposed to the "hotkey" function that is assigned to it. An industry-specific software that I use utilized the F1-12 keys in almost every function, and I can't seriously have to keep hitting Fn+F4 every time.
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This drove me crazy for about 2 hours today. I swear I saw something in the control panel to switch between function keys and multimedia keys but alas I couldn't find it. Here's what you have to do: As the system in booting hit F2 to go to Setup. From there click 'System Configuration' then 'Function Key Behavior'. Switch to 'Fuction Key First' then hit the 'Apply' box, then 'Exit'. Now the function keys will work normaly and you can hold 'Fn' to use the multimedia fuctions.
Seriously, I searched through offline help for an hour and a half, then these forums for half an hour and I'm amazed at how hard it is to find out how to do something this simple. I'm just glad I've been messing around with computers since the days of DOS so I thought to look in the BIOS.
Wow! Thank you so much! I really thought I was never going to figure it out. I had just resigned myself to remapping my keyboard.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I really, really appreciate your time and efforts!
On Windows 7, just open Windows Mobility Center, and toggle Function Key Row to "Function Key" instead of "Multimedia key". It's as easy as that...
Thanks so much for the EASY fix! I have used the ALT+F4, CTRL+F4, etc, for so long then yesterday I flashed the BIOS since the Dell diagnostic said it was critical update for my Inspiron. Voila - after the FLASH - the keys did not work. I spent hours trying to fix it and am very thankful for the fix. I was looking under the subject of General Keyboard Shortcuts. Thanks again!