Using separate USB keypad for macros?

Hi -

I’m doing some initial testing with Keyboard Maestro - Macbook Pro OSX Sierra. I have the Apple wired keyboard with number pad. I also have a separate USB numerical keypad as well. My idea was to setup the separate keypad as trigger keys for Keyboard Maestro and not use my main keyboard. I’m finding that since the keys overlap I can’t create separate macros just for the keypad.

Example - If I setup a macro on the USB keypad for the zero key - if I press the zero key on the main keyboard it also triggers the macro.

Is there a way to make Keyboard Maestro see my main keyboard and the separate number pad as separate input devices?

Thanks in advance.

As a general rule, hot keys cannot differentiate which keyboard they come from. USB Device Key triggers can usually differentiate between non-identical keyboards, but they do not swallow the key stroke, so they are not generally useful for keys that have an action already (such as number pad keys) (see Frequently Asked Questions for more info on this topic).

You might like to try a keypad like the XK-24 or similar.

I found a way to use a separate numeric keypad as dedicated input device for KeyBoard Maestro while preventing it will type the keys itself.

It used to be so that if you assign "1" on the separate numeric keypad as usb device trigger it will play the macro but also will type "1". Not what you want.
This is how to make sure the keyboard is disabled from being seen by the OS but still can trigger KM.

It is a long workaround but it does work. I have not thoroughly tested it yet but enough to post the idea here.

Install this program:
It is a program a bit like KM but has less options. And we want to use KM don't we? :slight_smile:

Disable all the devices in the settings and make a new special setting for the (numeric) keyboard device.
For every key that it has, make a new function, set it to Applescript.
The applescript will tell keyboard Maestro to run a specific macro.
So you have to make macro's in KM without any trigger but with the correct names.

Here is a screenshot of what i have now. Hopefully it will make clear how it works.

This is my KM macro list. Only for testing i used the Speak Text action.


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Hello - A bit late for an answer but hoping it helps. I’m new to the forum but have been using macros for Mac since the last century. yes - I’m old. I just recently tested a separate keypad - get this - purchased from Walmart for $8. It’s the ION brand keypad. Oddly enough I did not find this keypad on their web site but it’s in all my local stores (Tampa, Florida). As a side note, iHome offers a numeric keypad very very similar in appearance to the ION brand.

Using Keyboard Maestro, I can assign any of my macros to this keypad using “DEVICE TRIGGER”. Keyboard Maestro recognizes the keypad as a separate device and does not see it as a numeric keypad once I assign a macro to it.

Here are my specs. I use this same keypad on two different computers running different OSX versions.
Mac OS X 10.7, KM version 5.3.2
Mac OS X 10.9, KM version 6.4.8

A lot cheaper than any other macro keypads I have come across. If you have a label machine, you can use a 3/8" label to create labels for the keypad.

Hope this helps

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Thanks. Good to know they do exist.
It might be hard to find for the people not close to the shop where you’ve found it. Maybe you can find a link to a similar one online, or at least post a picture of it.

I found I made a typo on the brand - it's not ION but ONN brand.

Link: at Walmart: ONN Brand 19key USB Keypad


I have groups of macros all using keypad combination triggers. How do I assign these groups to the Device trigger? Or am I misunderstanding? Thanks for posting.



You have to select the "USB Device Key Trigger" @michael_gilbert and then press your desired key on the NumPad for later triggering (here the number key 8).