AppleInsider is supported by its audience and may earn commission as an Amazon Associate and affiliate partner on qualifying purchases. These affiliate partnerships do not influence our editorial content.
macOS Sierra has ushered in a number of new changes for Mac users, including the ability to remap the modifier keys, like the escape, control, command, or option keys to another hardware button. Here's how to do it.
The remapping ability isn't necessarily new to macOS 10.12.1. You could previously remap the functions for the caps lock, control, option, or command keys. It is, however, the first time that you can remap the Escape key without using a third-party utility.
This could come in handy for users who would like to keep the hardware ability to map the escape key to a different, less used mechanical key, rather than a touch action, if the rumors about the OLED Magic Toolbar replacing the hardware F-keys on the new MacBook Pros are true.
How to remap the Escape to a hardware key in 4 Steps
To remap the Escape key to another hardware key:
- 1. Open System Preferences and find Keyboard.
- 2. Select the Modifier Keys option located in the bottom right corner.
- 3. Select the drop down box that is next to the hardware key that you'd like to remap. Then select Escape.
- 4. Finally, click OK then close System Preferences.
Remapping function keys can come in handy for a variety of reasons. Third-party keyboards often aren't oriented well for Mac users, and the ability to swap the Windows key and the alt key on the keyboard can be helpful. Also, if you never actually use the large caps lock key, you can now make it useful by making it an escape key.