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System thinks CTRL key is pressed when it isn't

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by starfishtwo, Nov 3, 2011.

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  1. starfishtwo

    starfishtwo Thread Starter

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    Just bought a new Lenovo G770 5 days ago. Running Win7 64bit. The system repeatedly thinks the CTRL key is being pressed when it isn't. In the middle of typing a sentence, suddenly every letter I type performs the associated ctrl key action. The only remedy is a complete reboot (and loss of data in the process). I have googled this problem and it seems pretty common, but all I've found are a lot of suggestions (some of them too technical) and no clear solutions. Some of the non-useful suggestions I've gotten already:

    "Wedge the CTRL key up" ~ it is not physically stuck; I have not even touched the key when this happens. If the key were simply physically stuck, a reboot would not solve the problem.

    "Clean your keyboard" ~ the keyboard is not dirty; it's 5 days old.

    "Press some combination of keys, e.g. ctrl-alt-alt-ctrl-shift" ~ even if this were to work, I'm unwilling to have to do this every 15 minutes for the entire life of my laptop.

    "Download new drivers from your vendor" ~ the Lenovo website is so confusing, I cannot tell what, if any, drivers I should download.

    "It's a USB/mouse issue" ~ I am using an external mouse rather than the touchpad, but this has only happened while I was in the middle of typing, not using the mouse. One thing that did ring bells with this suggestion: Several times when this ctrl key thing happened, a few moments before, the screen had suddenly jumped down to the bottom of the page, leading me to believe I had touched the touchpad with my palm. Soon after, the ctrl key seemed stuck.

    Also, I do not have sticky keys enabled.

    I have been struggling with this for 2 days now, and it renders the laptop virtually unusable for my purposes. I'm hoping someone here can solve this problem for me, because I really don't want to have to return this computer.
     
  2. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Try it without your extra mouse connected. Use it for long enough to determine if the problem is still there.

    Do you have a standard mouse or one with extra buttons?
     
  3. starfishtwo

    starfishtwo Thread Starter

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    No, it's just a standard, wired Logitech mouse with L/R buttons and a scroll wheel. Thanks for your advice. I will try without an external mouse. Might take some time to know if that's the fix, as the problem recurs periodically, not constantly. If it did turn out to be the mouse, would getting a new mouse fix it? This mouse is only 6 months old.
     
  4. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    If the mouse is causing the issue my guess is that a different one will probably fix the issue, but since it could also be a USB problem rather than mouse I wouldn't guarantee it.

    I doubt that accidentally touching the touchpad or an interaction between mouse and touchpad is causing this, but in case it does and for easier typing disable the touchpad when using the mouse. My HP laptops have a button just above the touchpad for turning it on/off and most (if not all touchpads in the last five or six years) can be disabled in software (Control Panel - Mouse - Device settings tab [tab may have different name depending on manufacturer]).
     
  5. starfishtwo

    starfishtwo Thread Starter

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    I guess I could try a different mouse plugged into a different port?

    I've discovered since my last post that simply pressing the right ctrl key stops the problem and the computer works normally again.

    I'm wondering if there's some sort of key combo that I could be hitting that functions as a ctrl-lock? This problem only occurs when I am typing, and I am currently adjusting to a new keyboard with a shortened shift key on the right hand side. I've tried to reproduce the problem with no success.
     
  6. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    On laptops keys are pretty close together. Seems possible that a slight misalignment or small amount of foreign material could create a condition where pressing an adjacent key, or "fat fingering" the CTRL key with an adjacent one would cause the CTRL key to stick. However, I don't know how a reboot would relieve the problem, unless the process involves pressing the CTRL or adjacent key.

    I haven't heard of a ctrl-lock, and it doesn't seem very useful, but that doesn't mean there is not one.
     
  7. starfishtwo

    starfishtwo Thread Starter

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    When the problem first started happening, a reboot fixed it. It took a few days for me to realize I could fix it by simply pressing the ctrl key. But the fact that a reboot fixes it does make it more confusing. I've considered the fact that the ctrl key is truly getting physically stuck, but I've been unable to reproduce the problem. I have tried pressing all different areas of the key, as well as pressing the key in combination with other nearby keys.

    When googling to research this problem, I have found posts about this problem dating all the way back to 2006. It appears to exist in several makes of computers, and in XP and Vista as well as Win7. I've found no evidence of anyone solving the problem by replacing the keyboard. People using an external keyboard have reported that changing to a different keyboard did not solve the problem. The one and only thing all posts seem to have in common is that all are occurring on laptops. I've never seen anyone post this problem about a desktop.

    I'm flabbergasted that many people have been trying to solve this problem for 5 years, and still, no one seems to know anything about it or have any answers. I have not been able to even get enough information to determine if this is a hardware problem or a software problem.

    2 days ago, I tried a strange but simple suggestion I found in an old forum post: simultaneously pressing both ctrl keys, then both shift keys, then both alt keys. The ctrl key has not gotten stuck since then, but I'm not yet willing to consider it "fixed" since the problem has tended to recur.

    Since this is a brand new computer, I'm anxious to discover the cause of this problem ~ as I do not want to spend any more time getting all my files on this laptop if I'm going to have to return it. Being unable to determine if this is a hardware issue has clouded the ability to make that decision.
     
  8. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    This thread is a totally different problem except that it involves a mysterious keyboard now-it-works/now-it-doesn't issue. Check out the solution (post # 10). :) I'm betting you'll try it (remove and replace the battery).
     
  9. managed

    managed Trusted Advisor Spam Fighter

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    I have read about a similar problem with a Dell Inspiron laptop.
    The solution was to turn off the 'zoom' feature in the touchpad properties.
    Perhaps you could try something similar with your laptop ?
     
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