Changing the Default NumLock Key State

Can I change the Default NumLock Key State?

You sure can!

The NumLock key is a key that toggles the state of the Numbers section of the keyboard (you know, the right-hand side keys duh…) The state of the NumLock key can be set in three ways:

  • In the BIOS (not all computers have that feature in their BIOS)

  • By Windows (i.e. Registry setting)

  • By the user (i.e. by manually pressing the NumLock key)

Although full-sized keyboards offer good Num keypads, most laptop and some server keyboards (especially the IBM ones) do not have the Num part of the keyboard, and instead use additional key mappings for the normal character keys.

Having the NumLock key turned on will be beneficial for most full-sized keyboard users, but the laptop and server users might be annoyed because they will forget that the NumLock key is on, and thus whenever they type something on their small keyboards, they will get numbers instead of letters when pressing keys like u,i,o,p,j,k,l,m and so on.

To control the state of the NumLock key follow these steps:

  1. Open Registry Editor.

  2. In Registry Editor, navigate to the following registry key:

HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Control Panel\Keyboard

  1. Create the following value (DWORD):


and give it a value of 0 (zero) or 2 (two)

  • 0 = NumLock is turned off after logon

  • 2 = NumLock is turned on after logon

Note: As always, before making changes to your registry you should always make sure you have a valid backup. In cases where you’re supposed to delete or modify keys or values from the registry it is possible to first export that key or value(s) to a .REG file before performing the changes.

  1. Close Registry Editor and reboot the computer.

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