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- Philipp Ludewig

Keychron Adventures


I guess we all had this situation where some piece of technology just refused to work as intended and we would like the first person on earth to discover this problem. I felt like this last week and couldn't point out what caused my problem but let me start from the beginning. Quite some time ago some colleague posted an affiliate link in a conversational thread about keyboards which brought me to Keychron. The keyboards had all boxes checked for me as at this time I was searching for the perfect wireless QWERTY macOS keyboard and oh boy this is hard to find on the german market. I haved searched for quite a while and was happy to buy the keychron k4 but with my workspace setup it was impossible for me to make use of it. Two month ago this changed and I started using the new keyboard. I quite liked it and could make good use of its color functions but one thing bothered me the whole time. The F5 and F6 keys weren't working as functional keys. Instead they would dim the backlight of the keys. I believed if i would change the macOS settings for external keyboards it would solve my issue but no nothing changed. I was kinda annoyed by this. After some research I believed it could be an hardware issue so i tried to solve the problem with an firmeware update.

The firmware can be found here:

  • https://www.keychron.com/pages/firmware-for-keychron-k4

Who would have thought but there was a catch, to quote the great Dr. Kelso:

Nothing in this world worth having comes easy

The macOS was not having any of it as I tried to open the downloaded firmware file the OS hit me with the blant but very detailed error message: "Can't be opened". Well what could have been the problem? The internet recommands to download a GateKeeper-Helper. This didn't helped at all. Then i found a video on youtube in which someone explained that macOs archive manager tends to mark executables as TextEdit files. At this point i was not surprised anymore. The solution to this was the command chmod =x on the file.

Do you think that it would work now? HaHaHahahahaaaa ...... no. ;(

MacOs was throwing another error "Can't be opened move to trash" which I was expecting and had the solution already at hand thanks to help from youtube yet again. The command xattr -cr solved this problem and i ran the firmware update. I was really happy after this intense 20minutes of problem fixing.

Didnt fix my problem though. Insert mad laughing again Did i mention that I also took a look into the manual? I didn't find a solution to my problem but i found the email address of the keychron support. I wrote them my problem and they answered me with the simple RTFM and kinda like this guy i took another look into the manual to find my solution: fn + k + c for 3 seconds.. Yes thats how you disable the backlighting keys.

Now let me go and code in peace.