Change Function key behavior in Dell laptops


  1. in my del inspiron 3542 when i press WinKey+X, mobility center is opening but its not showing to change the multimedia keys tabs. Its not showing function key rows

  2. Related Dell Drivers and programs are required to be installed. Did you at anytime format your computer? If so you may not see these options. I have now formatted my computer, and I too do not see them now. You may consider the BIOS option. be careful. 🙂

  3. Im actually having an issue as I can’t activate the backlight keyboard. Normally, it’s FN + F10 and i’ve tried also to press only F10 but still it doesn’t work. Any tip?

  4. hey so i just bought the dell inspiron 15 7000. Ive tried changing the funtion keys to multimedia keys in mobility center. it works. but when i close my laptop it reverts back to default settings of function keys, Ive gone in the bios and changed the function keys settings to multimedia. after i save and get to the desktop its worked. but when i close my laptop or power down, and than power on my computer the default settings have been restored. Ive tried refreshing windows! nothing. Ive also spoken with dells technical support for countless transfers. they claim the settings cant be changed. but isnt that the whole point of the bios? what now?

    Can i make these changes permanent? please help! thanks

  5. I had changed these settings for sure. Some Dell program appears to me reversing the changes, in your case. See if you can identify it. I recently reformatted this laptop and clean installed Windows 8.1. I am not facing any of these issues now.

  6. The “Wnd+x > Mobility Center > Function Key Row > Select Multimedia Key” works on my Dell XPS laptop, thank you!

  7. hallelujah – thanks for that. I bought a new laptop and got sick with hitting f1-f6 as multimedia key during my work with Total Commander or Excel.

  8. Hey, i just bought inspiron 15 3000. And, in windows mobility center it did not show the lower part of the image of your mobility center. So it doesn’t have the function key row. I don’t want to settle for the BIOS option, because i want to turn on/off fn keys whenever it is necessary and BIOS option is a lot hassle.

  9. my friends daughter was messing about with my computer and somehow she changed my colour screen to grayscale and i have tried everything to get it back to normal and nothing works please help

  10. my keyboard backlighting isn’t working i’ve been in to the windows mobility centre and clicked on the keyboard backlighting thumbnail to get in to the backlighting control no problem. I then set backlighting to bright set the timer to auto turn off after 5 mins click on ok and nothing happens. the thumbnail continues to show backlighting off and there is still no lighting on the keyboard. any suggestions?

  11. thank you so much! I cannot live without using my f2 key and was constantly turning to airplane mode….yay!

  12. thank you soo much… i had been searching this all over internet but your “Via Windows Mobility Center” Worked. Thank you so much 🙂

  13. Hello all, I have come up with a strange problem which are listed as 1. Ctrl, Alt keys not working. 2. Caps lock and Num lock keys lights not working. Can anybody help. I would be very very thankful. God bless.

  14. i press fn + power button when i switch on my laptop then it doesn’t work only when i press the power button can any one help me how i dissolve the fn + power button

  15. its a dell driver app called “Dell QuickSet”, you can find it on the Dell drivers page. Mine is quickset64

  16. So I bought a Dell laptop and I want to set my four arrow keys (up, down, left, right) behaving like PgUp, PgDn, Home, and End when pressing the function button. Do you have any idea?

  17. My F1-F12 keys have all sorts of multimedia buttons on them (volume, brightness, wifi, etc). But I am working in a 3D application which uses F1-F12 heavily, and I do not want to have to press fn+F9 … how i am off FN key

  18. I can’t seem to post an image here but if you go to CONTROL PANEL, then select WINDOWS MOBILITY CENTER (last item on mine) you will see at the bottom a selection for FUNCTION KEY ROW – switch that setting and you will reverse functionality of function keys.

  19. hai i got the problem in number key of right side 2,4,6,8 works like a arrows how to change the settings

  20. i got the problem of right number key pad 2,4,6,8 are working like arrows
    i want to off it . But i don’t know how to off it
    ITS DELL INSPIRON 15 5547 i hope any one will help plzz
    i unable to play games plzzzz

  21. Hi i have dell inspiron 15 R lap top.when i press Winkey + E ,Explorer is not open , it will appear again desk top.Can you help me to reset this matter

  22. problem solved!! new xps dell laptop windows10…function keys not working…tried mobility center but dell didnt support it (they called it quickset). After 45 minutes, support had me go into bios and change the function keys directly. worked immediately. Interestingly, my plug in keyboard always worked.

  23. Well… I was running mad with it…somehow figured it… then really felt like helping others who might face this trouble

  24. thanks, to get to mobility you can also right click the power button and you will see windows mobility center, 2nd to last option 🙂

  25. Hi all,

    great article. Just to update, I think in the latest bios from dell there is a slightly different screen choices to click through. Most people could figure that out, but for n00bs like me I had to email dell. they sent me the correct walkthrough to switch the function lock as of 2/12/16 for windows 10 del xps 15″. Reposting dell’s instructions below for others:

    “Once in the bios choose “post behavior” and then “FN Lock Options”. check the box for “FN lock” and then check “lock mode enable/secondary”. If already configured that way, check “lock mode enable/primary”.

    hope that helps.

  26. Hey; so on my laptop (Inspiron 15 5555 AMD); most of the function keys work without pressing FN (f1 = mute; f2 = volDown; f3 = volUp; f8 = window; f9 = search; f10 = backlight; f11 = brightnessDown f12 = brightnessUp); BUT the f4 (musicBack); f5 (musicStop); and f6 (musicSkip) don’t work unless your press shift as well. How do I make it so I don’t have to press shift to use the f4-6 keys? Thanks in advance 🙂

  27. Please help! I have a Dell Inspiron 1545, Windows 7, and In windows mobility center, I don’t have the Function key row, and I am scared to go into the BIOS settings. What do I do???

  28. For all who are not able to get the change function key option in windows mobility center when accessing WinKey+X method, just press Esc+Fn, this will automatically reverts the multimedia keys to function keys and vice versa…

  29. I don’t have the “Customized by Dell” buttons in my Windows mobility center, is there a driver to download…

  30. None of these worked for me bc there is no option to change multimedia tabs on my Latitude 5450. However, I was finally able to fix it by hitting the FN button and ESC button at the same time.

  31. i really didn’t like this default feature of Fn key of my vostro 3550, i.e. pressed F2 intending to rename a file but only to disconnect the wireless network 🙁 Thanks a million for this quick and easy swapping solution.

  32. Oh my god. Thank you so much. There was so much bullshit and nothing worked lol I was about to throw my computer out the window until you came 🙂

  33. YOU CAN PRESS “Fn” + “Esc”(On this button there is a lock with the inscription “Fn”). This combination turn on/off “function key”

  34. When my phone beeps or rings near laptop, display of laptop is blinking few seconds. Please can you give me a solution.

  35. what is the bios option ? i could not find anything relevant. Such a nice laptop wonder why these morons (Dell) also went in the way of Lenovo in fking up our experience for us.

  36. Best.Solution.Ever! Whooda thunk it? A little blue lock icon with “FN” written on it means that it “Locks” the “FN” key! (not sarcasm, I completely missed this for a while). Thank you!


  38. A very simple solution to this problem is: For Dell Inspiron 15 (3000 Series)
    Just press Fn + Esc key. (If your Escape key has lock symbol with fn printed on it).

  39. I found how to lock and unlock the function keys. I wanted to use F2 as the “rename” key, not for “volume down”. For me…. I found the function lock key is the same as my ESC key. It looks like a little lock with the letters Fn. By pressing the the actual function key and the ESC key (or function lock) it toggles what to do when function keys are pressed. Works very similar to the CAPS LOCK to toggle uppercase and lowercase only you have to press two keys simultaneously.

  40. Omg. This was the best solution on this page. It makes sense as there is a Fn Lock icon on the Escape button. Duh. Thank you so much!

  41. Same here! I’ve been driving myself crazy looking for a solution; didn’t want to go into BIOS and the mutlimedia settings weren’t working.

  42. Solution by @disqus_ZGXZsTdVa5:disqus
    No need to do all the bios settings… just hold the Fn key and press esc. … its done

  43. Sadly, you have access to a whole menu I do not have access to. When I open windows mobility centre I can only change 5 submenus. Fn key isn’t one of them. In fact everything below the “customised by dell” in your picture doesn’t show up for me.

    I’m stuck with a situation where Dell last night randomly decided to reassign the Fn function. How or why a it did this I have no idea. It wasn’t during a reboot. IT happened while I was watching something online and suddenly the brightness button stopped working (today I figured out it works when Pressing Fn…). I’m baffled and worried. because laptops aren’t supposed to randomly change their settings. I’ve tried rebooting but that obviously didn’t work.

    So if someone can direct me to a better option than the one above (which isn’t available to me), please help!

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