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Conduct your Mac Like a Pro!


Macros/Switching does not work after I login, what’s wrong?

The Macros/Switching was all working fine, but then I restarted or logged out and back in, and now they are not working any more, what’s wrong?

The actions are all enabled by the Keyboard Maestro Engine. You can start it by launching the Keyboard Maestro application, or have the engine start automatically by enabling the “Launch Engine at Login” preference in the General preference pane.

My Macros are not working, what’s wrong?

In order for macros that use actions like Select Menu Item or Manipulate Window to work you must enable access for assistive devices in the Universal Access system preference.

Also, check that the macro group that contains the macros is enabled for the application you are testing with.

And finally, check that the Keyboard Maestro Engine is running (the Keyboard Maestro icon should be in the menu bar unless you have turned that off or the engine is not running).

The Window Switcher shows an empty list, what’s wrong?

In order for the Window Switcher to work you must enable access for assistive devices in the Universal Access system preference.

The Program, Window and Clipboard Switcher does not work at all, what’s wrong?

The Hot Keys for the Program, Window, and Clipboard Switcher are all Macros in the Switcher Group, so if you have disabled this group (or restricted it to certain applications), that will affect the Switcher macros as well.

Also, ensure that the Switcher Group and the macros are enabled.

I want to use command-Tab for the Program Switcher?

By default, Keyboard Maestro uses option-Tab for its Program Switcher to avoid overriding the system Program Switcher, but if you wish to use command-Tab you can do so.

Select the Switchers Group, then select the Program Switcher macro. Click the Edit button to switch in to Edit mode if necessary. Click the Hot Key field and press command-Tab.

AppleScript’s display dialog does not work, why?

AppleScripts are executed via osascript, so they run in the background, do not lock up the engine, and cannot crash the engine. However this means that they cannot perform user interaction. If you need user interaction (such as display dialog), you can work around this by asking another application (usually System Events is a good choice) to perform the request. For example:

tell application "System Events"
  display dialog "Hello"
end tell

See also the Scripting section.

I have an X-Key keyboard, are there any issues?

In general, Keyboard Maestro’s Device trigger can work with all the P.I. Engineering’s X-Key or other programable keyboards.

To use a key, the key must act like a button, that is it must be a single switch that is pressed on/off. You cannot use jogs, shuttles, joysticks or (generally) switches as trigger buttons.

To detect a key, Keyboard Maestro must be able to see an individual key turn on and then turn off. If you are using a double key on your device, you must remove it and configure either of the single keys and then you can replace it - otherwise it will seem like you are pressing two keys and Keyboard Maestro will not know which to use.

Currently, Keyboard Maestro cannot recognise the left most column of the MWII Jog & Shuttle, the top two rows of the LCD No Reader, and the left most column of the 128-Key. We are working with P.I. Engineering to resolve these issues.

How do I get more help?

For more information about a specific Keyboard Maestro feature consult the Keyboard Maestro Documentation, post a question to the Keyboard Maestro User Group, visit the Keyboard Maestro web site or contact us.

We always respond to email, however email is no longer a guaranteed medium and spam filters can delete your message to us or our message to you. Messages sent using the feedback form will always get to us, emails sent to us will pretty much always get to us, but if you do not receive a response within one business day check your spam filters to see if they have trapped our reply. If you use the feedback form and want a reply, make sure you enter your email address!

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Old Documentation