Fix: Function keys not working on Windows 10 laptop

By: Ivan Jenic
5 minute read

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Many users use function keys regularly on their laptop, but according to users functions, keys aren’t working for some laptop users on Windows 10. This can be an annoying problem, so let’s see if there’s a way to fix it.

This problem is actually tied to laptops from certain manufactuers. So, if your laptop manufacturer is on the list, the chance of experiencing this problem is bigger. Here’s the list of laptop manufactuers which laptops are prone to function keys problems:

  • Dell
  • HP
  • Toshiba
  • Lenovo
  • Asus

What to Do if Function Keys Don’t Work on Your Windows 10 Laptop

Table of contents:

  1. Run Hardware troubleshooter
  2. Update your laptop drivers
  3. Uninstall Synaptics Pointing Device driver
  4. Uninstall hotkey drivers from your laptop
  5. Enable VAIO Event Service
  6. Disable Filter Keys
  7. Reset this PC

Fix: Function keys not working in Windows 10

Function keys are available on most laptops and by using them you can make quick changes such as muting the sound, changing the volume or display brightness. As you can see, using function keys can be quite helpful, but if they aren’t working for you, you might want to try the following solutions.

Solution 1 – Run Hardware troubleshooter

This is a long shot but it won’t cost you a thing. Windows 10 is infamous for various compatibility issues, and if you’re using an older laptop, chances are that the current platform won’t be able to resonate well with the hardware configuration. Especially since the updates tend to break more things than to improve them.

The troubleshooter should restart the affected devices (keyboard, in this case) and their respective services.

Here’s how to run Windows 10 Hardware Troubleshooter in a few simple steps:

  1. Press Windows key + I to summon the Settings app.
  2. Open Update & Security.
  3. Choose Troubleshoot from the left pane.
  4. Expand the ”Hardware and Devices” troubleshooter and click on the ”Run the troubleshooter” button.function keys not working windows 10 hp
  5. After that, wait for the procedure to end and check function keys again.

Solution 2 – Update your laptop drivers

Many devices might require that you install latest drivers when you switch to Windows 10. To do that you need to go to your laptop manufacturer’s website and download the latest function key drivers. We have to mention that they might not be called function drivers on the website, so you might have to download all the drivers.

function keys not working windows 10 dell

If there are no Windows 10 drivers available you might want to download latest drivers or maybe Windows 8 or Windows 7 drivers instead.

Download drivers automatically

Downloading drivers manually can be long and tedious process that might affect your PC in case you download wrong versions. Therefore you might want to use this Driver Update software that automatically downloads and installs the necessary drivers.

This tool is approved by Microsoft and Norton Antivirus. After several tests, our team concluded that this is the best automatized solution. Below you can find a quick guide how to do it.

  1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updater
  2. driver updater starting windowOnce installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
  3. driver updater diagnozingUpon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
    driver updater scan finished
    Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Disclaimer: some functions of this tool are not free.

Solution 3 – Uninstall Synaptics Pointing Device driver

Sometimes your default driver might come into conflict with Windows 10, so it’s advised that you uninstall Synaptics Pointing Device driver. To do so, just go to Control Panel and go to Uninstall program section and uninstall Synaptics Pointing Device driver from there.

Solution 4 – Uninstall hotkey drivers from your laptop

  1. Open Device Manager and find Toshiba hotkey driver. If you don’t have Toshiba laptop, just find hotkey driver for your device.
  2. Right-click it and choose Uninstall.
  3. Next, find HID-Compliant Keyboard and HID Compliant Mouse driver and uninstall them as well.
  4. Restart your computer and check if your issue has been resolved.

Solution 5 – Enable VAIO Event Service

This solution applies for VAIO laptops, but it might also work with other brands as well.

  1. Press Windows key + R and type services.msc.
  2. In the list of services, you’ll need to find VAIO Event Service. If you don’t own VAIO device, the name of service might be different.
  3. Double click the service and check the Startup type section. Make sure it’s set to automatic.
  4. Also, check the Service Status option and make sure that the service is started. If not, start it.
  5. Click OK and Apply to save the changes.

Solution 6 – Disable Filter Keys

Filter Keys is a Windows feature designed to block repeated keystrokes. Although it’s actually quite unlikey this feature will block the function keys on your keyboard, it’s possible. So, if none of the previous solution got the job done, you can try with disabling this feature, as well. Here’s how to do that:

  1. Go to Control Panel and open Ease of Access Center.
  2. Scroll down and select Make the keyboard easier to use option.
  3. Scroll down and locate Filter Keys option. Make sure that Turn on Filter Keys option is not checked.function keys not working windows 10 asus
  4. After turning off this option, click Apply and OK to save changes.

Solution 7 – Reset this PC

If none of the previous solutions helped you resolve the issue at hand, we’re afraid that there’s only one thing you should do and that’s resetting your PC to factory settings. Namely, as most of the keyboard/touchpads come with the OEM-provided third-party control apps, and Windows Updates tend to tear those apart.

This recovery option is much better than the clean reinstallation since you’ll be able to retain your data.

Here’s how to reset your PC to factory values in a few simple steps:

  1. In the Windows Search bar, type Reset and open Reset this PC from the list of results.
  2. Click on the ”Get started” button.function keys not working windows 10 toshiba
  3. Choose whether you want to keep or discard your files and start the restoring procedure.
  4. Once your system is refreshed, you should have an easy time to locate Microsoft Store.

After performing these solutions, or at least one of them, your problem with function keys on your Windows 10 laptop should be solved. If you have any comments or questions, just reach for the comment section below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in January 2016 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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