How to Change What a Key Is on a Qwerty Keyboard in Microsoft on a Dell

Updated April 17, 2017

Whether you are changing the keyboard layout on a Dell computer because of convenience, familiarity or as a hilarious office prank, this task is relatively simple to accomplish. Dell offers its own software for its keyboards that allows you to change the functions of the special hotkeys on the keyboard. Microsoft also offers a keyboard layout creator that can rearrange key mappings on a keyboard.

Open a Web browser and navigate to the Dell download centre using the link in the Resources section below. Once there, click "Enter a Tag" and type in the requested numbers from your computer's service tag. The location of the tag on your computer will vary by model. Click "Go."

Fill in the boxes for "Operating System" and "Language." Select "Mouse & Keyboards" under "Category" and "All" under "Importance."

Click on the driver package with the same name as your keyboard. Click "Download Now" to download the software. Open the software when the download is complete and follow the on-screen prompts to install the software to your computer.

Open "DellTouch Programmable Keys" from the "Programs" menu on your computer.

Select the on-screen "HotKey" that you want to reprogram. Select a new function for the key using the popup window. Click "OK" when finished.

Download, install and open the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator, using the link in the Resources section.

Select "Load" from the "File" menu and select a standard keyboard layout to edit. You will probably want to select "United States-QWERTY."

Click on any light grey key to reassign its function. You can also click on any of the three shift states on the left side of the window to modify a key with that state. For example, if you select the "Ctrl" shift state and then click on the "J" key, you can modify what happens on your computer when someone holds "Ctrl" and presses the "J" key.

Enter the character that you would like to assign to the key in the text area. You can type the character, copy and paste it from another window, or enter the character's Unicode value. Click "OK."

Click "Save" from the "File" menu to save your keyboard layout. Give your keyboard layout a name and press "Enter." Open your computer's control panel and select "Keyboard." Select your new keyboard layout in the layout drop-down list and click "OK."

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About the Author

David Weinberg began writing in 2005 at New College of Florida, composing articles on history and political science for publication within the school and for online circulation. Weinberg has been a professional outdoor educator for more than five years with experience throughout the United States.