Type a Keystroke That Is a Keyboard Maestro Editor Shortcut Key (Not a Macro Hot Key) Not Working

The Type a Keystroke wiki page says to not use the keystroke of an active hot key trigger, but not sure what i found is included in the unpredictable behavior mentioned in the wiki.

I setup a macro to Type a Keystroke (ctrl + right arrow). This is the default system hotkey for moving the current space one to the right. This is also a hot key in Keyboard Maestro that when editing a macro moves the current selected action down one.

If in Keyboard Maestro Editor I manually type ctrl + right arrow, the system preference takes the key and changes the current space to the one to the right. If I am editing a macro and hit the play button or trigger the macro with a hot key (cmd + shift + option + Q) it triggers the Keyboard Maestro hot key and moves the current action down one.

If I am not editing a macro the hot key does nothing.

I tried each of the following to fix it, none of them made the hot key work for me:

  • Quit Keyboard Maestro Editor
  • Use the Send To option on the Type a Keystroke to send to the Finder
  • Activate the Finder first
  • Click the mouse in an area of the screen to make Finder active that way
  • Restart the Keyboard Maestro Engine

If I change the system hot key for changing the workspace it works, but I kind of want to keep that hot key if possible, I do use it manually too and it's set into my muscle memory now.

System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > Mission Control

(I did change the hot keys for Switch to Desktop)

Test macro

The 4 comments underneath are so you can see the macro moving down.

  1. If you don't have Spaces turned on you can follow Apple's help
  2. Create 2 workspaces, put Keyboard Maestro on the left one
  3. Start editing the macro, select the Group and hit Play or the hot key.


Ctrl-RightArrow.kmmacros (4.3 KB)


Simulated keystrokes containing arrows or function keys cannot trigger application hot keys (due to a behaviour change several versions of macOS ago), so the action should not cause a change to the space.

Whether the key is swallowed or not, I don’t know.

Assuming it is not swallowed by the system when it does not process the hot key, then the keystroke should go through to the target application, and could presumably cause the action to move up or down if that is the normal behaviour of the keystroke.

What do you want the macro to do?

Basically i want Keyboard Maestro to trigger the Misssion Control Space change using the hot key of control left/right arrow.

I changed the hot key in System Prefs > Keyboards to ctrl+option+cmd , and . instead and that is working for me. Funnily enough I don't even have to train myself to learn the new hot keys i assigned, instead I created Keyboard Maestro shortcuts for the old ctrl + left/right arrow and have those trigger the new hot keys and it all works.

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