Beginner question: keystroke action not working

Hi - brand new user here. Running version 6.4.8 of KM on OSX 10.9.5

I'm trying to build a very simple macro that will bring up Carbon Copy Cloner and run it whenever my clone drive is mounted. Here is the macro:

It works down to the last action meaning this:

  • It detects when the volume is mounted
  • It brings up the application Carbon Copy Cloner

But the keystroke action is not recognized even though it is valid. I know it valid because, I can simply move the focus to the CCC application window and enter cmd-r and it runs.

I even tried adding another pause before the keystroke action to see if that was the reason but it still won't run.

  • I also checked that KM is allowed to control the computer under Accessibility in the Security&Privacy control panel

I'm sure this has got to be extremely basic. What am I missing here?

Thanks and glad to be here


Hey Avi,

CCC at front should be sufficient.

Use a select-menu-action rather than a simulate-keystroke-action.

If it doesn’t work then you might use a pause until menu item ‘X’ is enabled.

I would also explicitly select the task in CCC to avoid possible side-effects.


1 Like

I get this a lot with one of my macros - just one! It’s most annoying. For some reason it doesn’t properly switch to the target application.

I’ve had some success with doing:

  1. Activate Application… (change the timeout, it’s set to 20s by default and on my system this is rubbish, frequently causes a macro aborted message!).
  2. Pause a second or so
  3. Activate application again (should be pointless but seems to help and won’t hurt)
  4. Now do the Pause Until and then the rest of your macro.

I’ve found that sometimes the initial activate gets either confused or maybe something else jumps in and stops it becoming frontmost app, who knows. Giving it a second or so to sort itself out and then re-activating has helped for my issue. (At the moment anyway :wink: ).

Worth a try, if it helps super, if it doesn’t - well you gave it a shot!

All the best,

Another newbie.

Hey Avi,

I just noticed how you're opening the CCC app.

I generally find it better to use the 'Activate Specific Application' action:



Yes, never use Open in Default Application to open an Application - at the least, open it with the Finder. The default application for an application can be very odd things which will not work as expected.

Also, Activate will wait until the application is at the front, Open will not.

Even when an application is at the front, especially if it has just launched, it does not mean it is necessarily ready to receive keyboard input. It may still be starting up.

Better to pause until the desire menu item is enabled.


Thanks folks! I got it to work. I'll show it below. I did change to Activate Specific Application although (I think....) that was not absolutely necessary. I did change to Select Menu Action and that did help but was not sufficient. What completed the task was Chris's advice to add a second pause condition to wait for the menu item to be enabled. Who would have thought? But experience rules.

Here is the working macro

This was a good first exercise in observing the sensitivity and timing aspects of macros.

I really appreciate the good advice. I have a list of macros I want to write - mostly audio related within the context of Logic Pro, iZotope RX and related tools. Should be an interesting task.

I will probably be back with questions but will also share whatever I come up with