Numeric Keypad Numbers Different than Alphanumeric Keys in SOLIDWORKS!?!

Article by Prasadh Annalingam, CSWE updated April 7, 2021


That’s right! If you have a keyboard that has number keys on the side, it is important to note that they are a bit different than the numbers at the top of your keyboard. To be exact, they are different when it comes to the SOLIDWORKS keyboard shortcuts.

Keyboard Keys- Courtesy of Microsoft Support Page: Using your keyboard

A SOLIDWORKS keyboard shortcut assigned with something like “Alt + 1” will not work if you use the number 1 key on the Numeric Keypad.

Why are they different?

The number keys are different because they are captured as a different keystroke within the shortcuts (see below).

Shortcut Syntax: Top of Keyboard Numbers vs Numeric Keypad Numbers

Shortcut Syntax: Top of Keyboard Numbers vs Numeric Keypad Numbers

We can see that the number 1 key from the Numeric Keypad is captured as “Num 1” while the top of the keyboard number one is captured as “1”. So now we might be asking ourselves a very important question…

Is this Good or Bad?

It’s definitely a good thing! Since the numbers are captured as different keys with the shortcuts, it means we can have that many more shortcuts we can assign!

More Keys = More Shortcuts!

What if we want a shortcut to work with the number key regardless of where pressed?

Although we can set a vast amount of shortcuts, I like to keep my number shortcuts the same regardless of where I click the number key. To achieve this we are simply going to add both variations of the shortcut for a command. One using number key at the top of your keyboard and one using the numeric keypad.

Assign both shortcuts to the same command

Assign both shortcuts to the same command

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Prasadh Annalingam, CSWE

Prasadh is a Certified SOLIDWORKS Expert and Technical Applications Analyst based in the Javelin Oakville head office.