How to Lock Your Keyboard Temporarily

Prevent yourself and others from accidental typing

What to Know

  • Lock a Windows keyboard fast by typing Win+L or CTRL+ALT+Delete.
  • MacBook users can just close the lid or use Control-Shift-Power to lock things up.
  • Third-party options also exist if you don't care for the manufacturer's approach.

This article explains how to lock your computer keyboard when you're not using it, including keyboard shortcuts and third-party apps.

How to Disable a Laptop Keyboard

The easiest way to disable your keyboard is by locking your computer or putting it in sleep mode. On Windows machines, there are several ways to do this.

  • Win+L
  • CTRL+ALT+Delete
  • Start button
  • Close the lid
  • Use a screen saver

The easiest method is the Win+L keyboard shortcut. Any typing that happens after you use this shortcut only serves to wake up the screen. The next easiest is pressing CTRL+ALT+Delete. This shortcut pulls up a menu with a Lock option, as well as sign out, switch account, and task manager.

To lock your computer and save battery life, click the Start button, then the Power symbol, and select Sleep. Press the physical power button to wake it up. You can also enter sleep mode by closing the laptop lid.

Finally, you can use a screen saver and set it up so that when it's disabled, it brings up the sign-in screen. Open the Control Panel, type screen saver, select change screen saver. Select a screen saver if you're not already using one, set how much time should elapse before it turns on, and tick the box next to On resume, display logon screen.

Of course, all of these methods require that use you a unique and strong password.

How to Lock a MacBook Keyboard

There are similar options for locking a MacBook. The simplest ones are:

  • Close the lid
  • Use Control-Shift-Power to lock your MacBook
  • Use Command-Option-Power to put your MacBook to sleep
  • Select Sleep option from Apple menu

As on Windows computers, Macs have convenient keyboard shortcuts. You can use the Control-Shift-Power keyboard combo to lock a MacBook or Command-Option-Power to put it MacBook to sleep. Another method is to click the Apple icon on the upper left corner of the screen, then sleep. Closing the lid also puts your MacBook to sleep.

Lock a Keyboard Using a Third-Party Tool

There are several tools available that enable you to lock your keyboard without locking your machine or disabling the screen. On such option is called Keyboard Locker, which was compiled by How-To Geek staff from an AutoHotKey script. (AutoHotKey is a free scripting tool used for automating tasks in Windows.) After you install Keyboard Locker, you can use CTRL+ALT+L to disable your keyboard; type in the word unlock to re-enable it.

Other options include BlueLife KeyFreeze, Keyboard and Mouse Locker, and Kid-Key-Lock.