How to disable a laptop’s keyboard on Windows?

Question

Issue: How to disable a laptop’s keyboard on Windows?

Hello. I want to disable the keyboard on my Windows laptop. How do I do this?

Solved Answer

A laptop already has all the accessories needed to use it built-in. Like a mouse (touchpad), monitor, and keyboard. However, this makes replacing these parts much more difficult as they are hardwired into the laptop. Laptops are different from desktop computers that can make replacing parts as simple as disconnecting a cord.

Replacing a laptop keyboard can get pretty expensive, as you cannot simply disconnect it and connect a new one. You will most likely have to take it to a repair shop where they would have to open the laptop's hood to replace the entire built-in keyboard.

That is why many people choose not to replace the built-in laptop keyboard but to connect an external one instead. In this case, users should consider disabling the keyboard altogether to avoid accidental keystrokes. Unfortunately, turning off the laptop's keyboard is probably more difficult than it should be but in this guide, we will show you how to do it using 4 different methods.

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How to disable a laptops keyboard on Windows

Solution 1. Disable the Laptop Keyboard Driver

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  • Press the Windows key + R to open up a Run box
  • Type devmgmt.msc and press Enter to launch the Device Manager
  • Locate and double-click on the Keyboards section
  • Locate the listing for the laptop’s built-in keyboard, and right-click on it
  • Click on Disable and Yes to confirm the action
  • If you don’t see a Disable option, you will see an Uninstall option, and you can click on it to uninstall the drivers for the built-in keyboard

Disable the Laptop Keyboard Driver

Solution 2. Disable via Command Prompt

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  • Click on the Search bar and search for Command Prompt then click Run as administrator
  • Type the following command and press Enter:

sc config i8042prt start= disabled

Disable via Command Prompt

  • Restart your computer and your laptop keyboard should not work
  • If you want to re-enable the keyboard in the future you can use the following command:

sc config i8042prt start= auto

Solution 3. Stop the Keyboard From Installing With Group Policy Editor

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  • Press the Windows key + X and then select Device Manager
  • Expand Keyboards
  • Right-click Standard PS/2 Keyboard and choose Properties
  • Go to the Details tab and change the Property drop-down option to Hardware Ids
  • Open the Run dialog box with the Windows key + R
  • Type in gpedit.msc and press Enter
  • Under Computer Configuration, navigate to Administrative Templates > System > Device Installation > Device Installation Restrictions

Stop the Keyboard From Installing With Group Policy Editor

  • Right-click Prevent installation of devices that match any of these device instance IDs, and select Edit
  • Select Enabled in the upper-left portion of the Prevent installation of devices that match any of these device instance IDs window, and then choose Show

Prevent installation of devices that match any of these device instance IDs

  • Return to Device Manager in Step
  • Right-click the first entry in the list, and choose Copy
  • Go back to the policy you opened and double-click the space under Value, and then paste the copied ID into that box
  • Choose OK on both screens
  • Find the device again in Device Manager, right-click it, and choose Uninstall device
  • Restart the computer to permanently disable the laptop keyboard

Solution 4. Use an Incorrect Driver

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This method forces the keyboard to use a device driver that it cannot use.

  • Open Device Manager, expand Keyboards, right-click Standard PS/2 Keyboard, and select Update driver
  • Select Browse my computer for driver software
  • Select Let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer

Use an Incorrect Driver

  • Clear the Show compatible hardware check box
  • Scroll through and select a manufacturer (different than your standard keyboard), select a model, and then choose Next
  • Select Yes and Close once the driver is updated
  • Restart the computer

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About the author
Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The problem solver

Ugnius Kiguolis is the founder and editor-in-chief of UGetFix. He is a professional security specialist and malware analyst who has been working in IT industry for over 20 years.

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