Reader's question: The button on the old MacBook Pro is broken - so you can still use it ...

If the A key is broken ...

Today I got a question from my reader Helga, who owns an old MacBook Pro, on which the A key has unfortunately failed. She has already contacted Apple about a repair, but received feedback that replacement keyboards are no longer available for her model and that a repair from Apple is no longer an option.

She would now like to know whether you can assign the letter "A" to another key, so that she can at least use the MacBook Pro via this detour.

If a key on the MacBook goes on strike, you can quickly make do with the text abbreviations in the Finder (Photo: Sir Apfelot).

If a key on the MacBook goes on strike, you can quickly make do with the text abbreviations in the Finder (Photo: Sir Apfelot).

Two possible solutions to this problem immediately occurred to me, whereby number 1 can even be implemented free of charge.

Solution 1: shorthand text

For example, you can use the "Keyboard" system extension in the "Text" tab to define that the Finder every time you press two "ä" in a row, an "a" should be output. If you're wondering how the reader should type the "a" when creating the text abbreviation, I can recommend the copy-paste function, with which you can steal the "a" from any text.

I know you could do it with TextExpander and similar tools, but I think the onboard solution, which is also free, might be a better choice here.

Small inset as a reference to other exciting articles:

Solution 2: External keyboard as an alternative

Personally, I couldn't live with this double detour. For this reason, I suggested another alternative to Helga, which seems much more practical to me: An external keyboard that can be used in parallel to the built-in keyboard of the MacBook Pro.

Here you can either work with a wired USB keyboard or a wireless wireless keyboard. Who doesn't have the change for that original Apple Magic keyboard want to output, can take a look at the two third-party keyboards:

Wired keyboard with German layout
  • Mobility Lab wired touch Mac keyboard with slim and elegant design for office and home
  • Especially with the German QWERTZ keyboard layout and adjustable tilting legs for a fresh, appealing feeling
  • Comfortable and quiet operation

Both of the keyboards mentioned are cheap deals that do their job. Expect no miracles in terms of volume and keystroke, but if all you're looking to bring back to life is an ancient Mac, then these two products are perfectly adequate.

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