Remap F4 to Open LaunchPad on Older Pre-Mac OS X Lion Keyboards
Since the launch of Mac OS X Lion, all keyboards on new Mac products have replaced F4 with a ‘LaunchPad’ button instead of the old Dashboard button. If you have pre-Lion Mac, you can remap that F4 Dashboard button to open LaunchPad instead though, here’s how:
- Download and install FunctionFlip
- Open FunctionFlip from your System Preferences
- FunctionFlip will default to your standard keyboard, if you use another one, change that setting on the rightside of the preference panel
- Click the checkbox next to “F4: Dashboard” so that it is flipped – this makes it so you no longer have to press Function+F4 to get F4 (yes, we’ve covered switching function keys before)
- Next, go back to System Preferences, but this time select the “Keyboard” panel
- Click on “Keyboard Shorcuts” and select “Launchpad & Dock” from the left side menu
- Now double-click on the area next to “Show Launchpad” to assign a key to this, and hit F4
- Close out System Preferences
Now hit F4 and you’ll open LaunchPad, just like it does on the newest Mac keyboards. If you’re wondering, the reason you have to use FunctionFlip is because it reverses the key – by default on an older Mac keyboard you would have to hit Function+F4 to open LaunchPad, FunctionFlip strips that so it’s only F4 required.
This is a great tip from GigaOm, check out their article for a few other useful keyboard shortcuts for getting around in Lion.