Mar 09

Here a little tool that may not be very useful (Apple rejected it for not being very useful ;-)) but maybe someone likes the idea. It just blocks your keyboard input so you can wipe over your keyboard in order to clean it.

//edit: 13/February/2012 KeyboardCleanTool is just another example of a simple, secure utility app which can’t be sandboxed.

Download here

written by Andreas Hegenberg

22 Pings to “KeyboardCleanTool”

  1. KeyboardClean Tool Locks Your Mac Keyboard | Lifehacker Australia Says:

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  7. Lock your Mac OS Keyboard down with KeyboardClean Tool « Daniel C's Tech Beat Says:

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61 Responses to “KeyboardCleanTool”

  1. 1. kemenaran Says:

    This little tool is quite useful — thanks!

  2. 2. Pedro Ivo Says:

    wow! this is gonna be very useful!

  3. 3. Ale Says:

    Much more useful than a lot of stuff in the App Store…

    and not only it’s more confortable than disconnecting the keyboard, it actually incourages people to clean it 😉

  4. 4. Jamo Says:

    Apple may be stupid… Just sayin’

  5. 5. Alex Says:

    Great! Now I don’t have to open an empty TextEdit window anymore to absorb accidental inputs while cleaning :-)

  6. 6. Teo Says:

    Great idea haha

  7. 7. Cheeku Jee Says:

    This actually sounds useful! Thanks.
    Also, I think I found a bug with BTT.
    I have recently started using “automatic login more securely” – according to
    What it actually does is that once I am automatically logged in, the script automatically locks the computer.
    However every time, BTT is not started – I have to start it manually.
    I would love it if it could be fixed. :)

  8. 8. sphericalcow Says:

    awesome!! I am going to enjoy cleaning my keyboard _cover_ with this app. Apple is stupid not to approve it.

  9. 9. Rich H. Says:

    This should be a big improvement on turning off the keyboard and then having to wait for it to reconnect. Maybe more so for me, because I use my keyboard at a greater than average distance from my computer – the computer is a Mac Mini connected to a big screen TV, and I’m using the keyboard from my easy chair. So anything that saves me a fight with Bluetooth, I’m going to appreciate.

    I have a suggestion, in case you didn’t already think of it. What if someone is interrupted while cleaning their keyboard? It might be handy to have a remembered option to disable screen locking while the keyboard is disabled (and restore its state when the keyboard is once again enabled); otherwise, they wouldn’t be able to unlock their screen again!

  10. 10. Rich H. Says:

    BTW, I use AppFresh to help keep everything up-to-date. And sometimes, such as now, it claims there’s an update available that I’m not seeing. Perhaps someone simply told about an incorrect new version number.

    Hopefully they would take your word for the correct most recent version number. :-)

    Right now, AppFresh is showing 0.651 installed (correct) and a latest available version of r51682 (presumably incorrect).

  11. 11. Rich H. Says:

    CapSee and WhatKey still see modifier keys being pressed when KeyboardCleanTool has keyboard input disabled.

    I’m not saying that’s a problem, but it might surprise someone.

  12. 12. ScottW Says:

    My ten month old son likes hitting my keyboard while I am reading my RSS feeds. As I am using the trackpad and not the keyboard, this app works well as a baby defensive mechanism. Now make it put up flash cards in the bottom right corner of the screen on keypress and he would be even more happy!

    Not sure why Apple would reject it, but suggest they review the decision.

    Thanks for your continued effort on all your apps. BTT is fantastic.

  13. 13. IvanD Says:

    Great prank potential: Edit info.plist, so that there is no Dock icon, add to Start Up items, make invisible and watch your friend’s confusion and frustration (:

  14. 14. Damian Says:

    This doesn’t work at all! I ran it and my keyboard is still filthy.

  15. 15. Damian Says:

    Seriously, though, if I run this my cats won’t get to update this:

  16. 16. dr_bonzo Says:

    Nice. I am using “Lock screen” – a screensaver with a password to clean keyboard :)

  17. 17. Jake St. Peter Says:

    So I tried using this app. I am running the most current and updated version of mac osx lion. Here is the problem. It disabled the keyboard just fine. I then tried to re-enable the keyboard using the “enable keyboard button” – It says that the keyboard is now enabled … but the sad reality is, it’s not. I’ve tried rebooting the machine but now I can’t even use the usb keyboard plugged into my 2009 Mac Pro quad processor 8 core mac. I’ve tried a bunch of google searches and I’m not finding anyone with the same problem. So this leaves me to believe either I’m missing something pretty simple or a system file has been corrupted and it’s not triggering the “re-enable” action from the keyboardcleantool app. Please help.

  18. 18. Elek Says:

    Reconnect your keyboard!!!

  19. 19. Dan Says:

    Its useful.

  20. 20. ranjit Says:

    have always wanted something like this … the appstore reviewer must have been a douchebag :)

  21. 21. JM Says:

    Very useful ! Have been looking for something like this for a while.

  22. 22. ulysess Says:

    Perfect to take my baby and she don’t press the keyboard while I read my rss

  23. 23. Jason Argaunauts Says:

    Just wondering if “Jake St Peter”‘s concern has been dismissed or addressed. I have MS X Lion, so need to confirm before I use this well-rounded and much liked application.

  24. 24. arnodmental Says:


  25. 25. Darrin Jackson Says:

    I find this quite useful as a baby defense mechanism. I have small kids, that love to press keys on daddy’s keyboard. Thanks.

  26. 26. Urs Braem Says:

    Hey, I’ve been looking for this for a long time! It’s definitely useful! Baby defense while they’re big enough to watch Pingu on Youtube but not big enough to understand that they lose full screen if they type around. Too late for me but you should try to sell it again with baby defense as USP :-)

  27. 27. Matthew Nicholas Says:

    Totally brilliant tool – allows me to clean the keyboard on my MacBook without powering down (bad practise I know, but anyway…). Thanks for making this app, very strange why Apple wouldn’t accept it. It can be such a maddening world.

    All the best.

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  29. 29. João Pedro Says:

    Hm, not working on Mountain Lion for me :/

  30. 30. Richard Pearse Says:

    Thanks so much for this. I actually need it because my cat is constantly sitting on my keyboard when I walk away. It has been very problematic in the past (he has done some unthinkable things to shared google documents, and alway seems to know how to start voiceover). He opened Onyx once – but was thwarted by the password requirement. You can imagine the dangers that are possible. This is exactly what I need. Maybe you can remarket it to apple as safeguard against unwanted keyboard access.

  31. 31. Neal Says:

    dude, i use this all the time. thanks so much!

  32. 32. Renaud Says:

    Dude. This is awesome. And it is useful for more than just cleaning. Like having a 2 year old play with the keyboard while on Skype…

  33. 33. Jon Says:

    You are on my wavelength! Your apps are brilliant. iPhone remote looks awesome too. Thanks!

  34. 34. Sean Says:

    Why this functionality is not built in I will never know. Thanks a bunch.

  35. 35. Peter Says:

    Fantastic. For once, I can clean my laptop keyboard without having to shut it down or take measures to avoid losing work. Unfortunately, Apple doesn’t always know what is best for their users – they should have included this functionality. Thanks for making it freely available.

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  40. 40. Sonja Says:

    Totally useful for keeping the baby from messing something up when she plays with the keyboard. Maybe that is a better marketing angle. . .

  41. 41. EdHorse Says:

    This is a marvelous idea and works perfect. Many thanks!

    Suggestion: add a ‘disable track pad option’ (by pressing key T or somewhat) so we may clean our MacBooks without ruffle.

  42. 42. Carsso Says:

    Since Mavericks, “Enable access for assistive devices.” has changed.
    Now you can find it in “System Preferences” => “Security & Privacy” => “Privacy” => “Accessibility”.
    Would be nice to change the link in the app.

  43. 43. Aloha Says:

    I think it’s a wonderful app, small but useful. Thanks~

  44. 44. Philip Says:

    I agree with Carsso, the link should be updated to the appropriate System Preferences page in OSX 10.9. And thank you for pointing me in the correct direction – I actually came back here after a google search of “keyboardclean tool mavericks” after I couldn’t figure it out!

  45. 45. John Says:

    Doesn’t work in Mavericks, I miss it. Can you update it? to work in 10.9, I don’t find it useless at all and use it at least once a month.

  46. 46. Sam Says:

    Very useful for keeping my cats from ruining all sorts of work when I’m away from the computer, but the window is too big. Since there are probably people who would like to keep this running and available at all times, it would be nice to have an option to put it in the menu bar and maybe also keep it out of the dock. Simply click on the menu bar icon to lock or unlock and have the icon change color to show status. An easily understandable icon would be a keycap with a padlock on it.

    It also doesn’t work on media keys, but I didn’t expect it to. The cats can’t do any damage with those keys anyway.

  47. 47. Linda Says:

    This is perfect! Just what I need to coordinate my kitten and my keyboard. (Anyone remember the old jazz piano piece “Kitten on the Keys”?

    Thanks so much – this just became my new favorite app!

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  53. 53. Andy Says:

    BTT user here, stumbled on this, glad to see this is made by the same dev.

    I found it useful (as I type on my spiffy clean keyboard!).



  54. 54. Josh N Says:

    I’m sorry Apple didn’t find it useful. I may not use it more than a few times a year, but I found it very useful. I even decided to clean the whole screen and casing after cleaning the keyboard!

  55. 55. Daniel Says:

    This is useful when grandparents Skype in and the toddler wants to bang on the keys while talking to them. However, I get the accessibility warning each time I start it, even though I already allowed it in my privacy setting. That’s annoying.

  56. 56. MAURICIO Says:

    Evidently, the Apple Store evaluator hasn’t babies in front of his/her mac! This is a very useful utility.

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  59. 59. Mike Says:

    Looks good, but it also disables my USB keyboard. Was hoping to disable only the internal one.

  60. 60. Joyce Says:

    This is fantastic. Thanks so much.

  61. 61. Andrea Says: Apple, i found it extremely useful! :-)
    Greetings from Italy, Andrea

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