How to hit function keys in parallels

Written by chad anderson
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Parallels is a virtualisation software package for the Apple Mac OS X platform that allows users to run Windows on a Mac. By default, Parallels doesn't work properly with most Mac "function" keys. The virtualisation software will not recognise the pressing of one of the function keys because they are already reserved by Mac OS X for its own functions. By modifying the keyboard and mouse settings in Mac OS X, you can invert the function keys to be used in Parallels.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Open the System Preferences dialogue in Mac OS X under the Apple menu.

  2. 2

    Click the "Keyboard" icon to open the keyboard dialogue. Click the "Keyboard" tab.

  3. 3

    Click "Use the F1-F12 keys to control software features". The other option, "Use F1, F2, etc. keys as standard function keys," will allow you to use the keys normally as long as your preface them by holding down the "Fn" button while using the virtualisation window.

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