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Use your Chromebook keyboard

Your Chromebook keyboard works just like a regular keyboard, with a few differences.

Unique keys on your Chromebook keyboard

Most of the keys on your Chromebook work the same as any other keyboard, but Chromebooks also have a few unique keys. To find out more about them, read below.

Note: If you're using a Windows keyboard with your Chromebook:

  • The F keys at the top of the keyboard will work just like the keys below
  • The Windows key between Ctrl and Alt will work as the Search key
Search Search your apps and the web
To turn Caps Lock on or off, press Alt + Search.
Previous page Go to the previous page in your browser history (F1)
Next page Go to the next page in your browser history (F2)
Refresh Reload your current page (F3)
Full screen Hide the tabs and launcher in full-screen Immersive mode (F4)
switch window Show all windows in Overview mode (F5)
Decrease brightness Dim the screen (F6)
Increase brightness Make the screen brighter (F7)
Mute Mute (F8)
Decrease volume Lower the volume (F9)
Increase volume Raise the volume (F10)

Change your keyboard settings

Change how the Ctrl, Alt and search keys work

You can change the way the Ctrl, Alt and search keys work. For example, you can make the Search key work as a Caps Lock key.

  1. If you haven't already, sign in to your Chromebook.
  2. Click the status area, where your account picture appears.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. In the "Device" section, click Keyboard settings.
  5. Use the menus to change how the Ctrl, Alt and search keys work.
  6. Click OK.
Add words to your dictionary
  1. If you haven’t already, sign in to your Chromebook.
  2. Click the status area, where your account picture appears.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. In the "Device" section, click Keyboard settings and then Change language and input settings.
  5. At the bottom of the window that appears, click Customise spelling dictionary.
  6. Enter a word into the field "Add a new word," then press Enter.
  7. To delete a word from your dictionary, tap or click the X next to the word.
  8. When you’ve finished adding words, click Done.
Use autocorrect

Autocorrect fixes common words automatically as you type.

  1. If you haven't already, sign in to your Chromebook.
  2. Click the status area, where your account picture appears.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Under "Device," click Keyboard settings and then Change language and input settings.
  5. Under "Input Method", find your preferred keyboard and click Configure.
  6. Use the drop-down menu to choose the level of auto-correction that you'd like.
    • To get more corrections as you type, choose Aggressive.

If you have more than one keyboard ticked you'll need to turn on auto-correct for each one. Some keyboards don't have autocorrect.

Adjust autocorrect settings

  • If autocorrect fixes a word that you don't want fixed, edit the corrected word and autocorrect will leave it alone.
  • To add a word to your dictionary, right-click the word.
Use word prediction

Word prediction suggests words for you while you type or after you type. Currently, word prediction only works in Gmail.

Turn on word prediction

  1. If you haven't already, sign in to your Chromebook.
  2. Click the status area, where your account picture appears.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Under "Device," click Keyboard settings and then Change language and input settings.
  5. Under "Input Method", find your preferred keyboard and click Configure.
  6. Tick the box to Enable next word prediction.

Use a predicted word

To choose a predicted word from the list, do one of the following:

  • Click the word
  • Press the down arrow on your keyboard until the word is highlighted, then press the spacebar

Fix problems with your keyboard

If the volume or brightness keys don't work, you might be at the upper or lower limit for that setting.

If the backward or forward buttons don't work, check if the same icons in a web browser window are greyed out. For example, if the back button on a webpage is grey, the browser isn't aware of a page to move backward to.

If you're having other problems with your keyboard, try these steps:

  1. Turn off the Chromebook, then back on.
  2. Try using the keys while you browse as a guest. If the keys work, delete the account that's having the problem on your Chromebook, then add it again.
  3. [Optional] If the account that's designated as the owner is having problems, reset the Chromebook.

If you're still having trouble after trying these steps, contact your Chromebook manufacturer.

Do more with your keyboard

Casey is a Chromebook expert and author of this help page. Help her improve this article by leaving feedback below.

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