How to Remap Keys with PowerToys in Windows 10

With PowerToys, you can remap keys to other keys or shortcuts in Windows 10. Here’re the steps to remap keys with PowerToys.

Microsoft recently released an awesome free and open-source tool called PowerToys for Windows 10. In case you don’t know, PowerToys is a tool with a collection of utilities built into it. Some of those utilities include but not limited to the color picker, image resizer, run & search, bulk renamer, fancy zones, keyboard manager, etc. Each utility in PowerToys can be enabled or disabled individually. If you just want to use key remapping and fancy zones, you can enable those two and disable others. Put simply, PowerToys is an awesomely powerful tool that every Windows user should have.

One of the most useful utilities of the PowerToys tool is the keyboard manager. It allows us to remap keys on your keyboard to any other key or a shortcut. For example, if some key is not working as then you can remap it to some other key. Alternatively, you can assign a specific keyboard shortcut to any key on your keyboard. Key remapping is especially useful if you have additional keys on your keyboard. To remap keys with PowerToys, all you have to do is assign them in the Keyboard Manager section.

In this quick and simple guide, let me show the steps to remap keys with the PowerToys tool in Windows 10.

Note: If you haven’t already, download PowerToys from Github and install it like any other software. Once installed, proceed with the steps listed below.

Steps to Remap Keys with PowerToys Tool

After installing PowerToys, follow the steps listed below to remap keys with the PowerToys tools.

  1. First, open PowerToys in Windows 10. You can do this by searching for it in the Start menu.
  2. After opening PowerToys, select the “Keyboard Manager” tab on the left panel.
  3. Now, turn on the “Enable Keyboard Manager” option.
  4. Next, Click the “Remap a key” button.
    Click-remap-keys-button-181020
  5. Click on the “+” button.
    Click-add-button-181020
  6. Click “Type” under the “Key” section.
    Click-type-button-under-key-181020
  7. Press a key that you want to use as the remapped key. I pressed “`” because I want to use it to send another character or shortcut on pressing it.
  8. Click “Ok“.
    Press-target-key-181020
  9. Now, click “Type” under the “Mapped to” section.
    Click-type-button-under-mapped-to-181020
  10. Next press a key that you want to remap. In my case, I want to type “A” whenever I press “`”. If you cannot press the key, select the key from the drop-down menu under the “Mapped to” section.
    Press-remap-key-181020
  11. Alternatively, you can also map the key to send a keyboard shortcut. In this case, I want to send “Ctrl + V” when I press the”`” key.
  12. Click “Ok“.
    Remap-shortcut-in-powertoys-181020
  13. This is how it looks once you remap keys with PowerToys. In my case, every time I press “`”, it will send the “Ctrl + V” shortcut.
  14. Click “Ok” in the “Remap Keys” configuration window.
    Confirm-remap-keys-with-powertoys-181020
  15. If you see a warning, click on the “Continue Anyway” button.
    Click-continue-anyway-181020
  16. As soon as you do that, the remap instruction is added to the PowerToys keyboard manager’s remap keys list.
    Key-remap-in-powertoys-181020

That is all. It is that simple to remap keys with PowerToys in Windows 10.

Wrapping Up Key Remapping with PowerToys

Following the same procedure, you can remap any key on your keyboard.

Do keep in mind that some custom keys, like the “Fn” key, cannot be remapped. This is because most keyboards and laptops don’t register them as separate keys. Rather they directly send a different keycode when you press the key. The OS then interprets the keycode with help of the keyboard driver and performs relevant action. Since this is a hardware level restriction, there is nothing much you can do.

I hope that helps. If you are stuck or need some help, comment below and I will try to help as much as possible. If you looking for an alternative method, you can also remap keys with AutoHotKey.

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