Fixing Function Not Working (FN) Key Issues

The FN key is a special function key typically found on laptops and keyboards that allows users to quickly access certain functions or settings without having to go through the operating system. Common functions assigned to the FN key include adjusting screen brightness, volume, media playback, and enabling or disabling specific features.

However, there may be instances when the FN key stops working, leaving users unable to access these functions. Several factors can cause this issue, ranging from software conflicts to hardware problems. Let's explore some common reasons why the FN key might not be working and provide troubleshooting steps to resolve the issue.

1. Software Conflicts

a) Outdated Keyboard Drivers: Outdated or corrupted keyboard drivers can interfere with the FN key's functionality. Make sure your keyboard drivers are up to date by visiting the manufacturer's website and downloading the latest version.

b) Conflicting Software: Some third-party software or keyboard management applications can override or disable the FN key functionality. Try temporarily disabling or uninstalling such software to see if it resolves the issue.

2. Hardware Issues

a) Faulty Keyboard: A damaged or malfunctioning keyboard can cause the FN key to stop working. Try connecting a different keyboard to your computer to see if the issue persists. If the FN key works with the new keyboard, the problem lies with your original keyboard.

b) Loose Connection: Physical damage to the keyboard cable or a loose connection between the keyboard and the computer can also disrupt the FN key's functionality. Ensure the keyboard cable is securely plugged into the appropriate port on your computer.

c) Keyboard Settings: Some keyboards may have a dedicated FN Lock key or switch that toggles the FN key's functionality. Check your keyboard for such a key or switch and make sure it's in the correct position.

3. Troubleshooting Steps

a) Restart Your Computer: A simple restart can often resolve minor software glitches that may be causing the FN key issue. Restart your computer and check if the FN key starts working.

b) Update BIOS: An outdated BIOS can sometimes cause compatibility issues with certain keyboard functions. Check your motherboard manufacturer's website for BIOS updates and install the latest version if available.

c) Disable Filter Keys: Filter Keys is a Windows accessibility feature that can interfere with the FN key. Try disabling Filter Keys by going to Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Make the keyboard easier to use. Uncheck the "Turn on Filter Keys" option and see if the FN key issue is resolved.

d) Reinstall Keyboard Drivers: If updating the keyboard drivers doesn't work, try reinstalling them. Open Device Manager, locate your keyboard under "Keyboards," right-click on it, and select "Uninstall device." Restart your computer, and Windows will automatically reinstall the keyboard drivers.


The FN key is a valuable tool that provides quick access to various functions on a laptop or keyboard. If you encounter issues with the FN key not working, try the troubleshooting steps outlined above. In most cases, these steps will help resolve the problem and restore the FN key's functionality. If the issue persists, it may be necessary to seek professional assistance from a qualified computer technician.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What should I do if my FN key is not working on a laptop?

Check for software conflicts, hardware issues, and try the troubleshooting steps mentioned in the article. If the issue persists, consult a computer technician.

2. Why is the FN key not working on my external keyboard?

Ensure the keyboard is properly connected to your computer, update keyboard drivers, and disable conflicting software. Check the keyboard settings for an FN Lock key or switch.

3. How can I fix the FN key not working on Windows 10?

Restart your computer, update BIOS, disable Filter Keys, and reinstall keyboard drivers. Refer to the article for detailed instructions on each step.

4. What causes the FN key to stop working?

Outdated keyboard drivers, conflicting software, a faulty keyboard, a loose connection, or incorrect keyboard settings can all contribute to the FN key malfunctioning.

5. Can I use the FN key on a different computer?

The FN key's functionality may vary across different computers and keyboards. It's best to check the documentation or manufacturer's website for specific instructions on using the FN key on your device.



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