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In this article you’ll learn how you can enable or disable the on-screen keyboard on Windows 10. The on-screen keyboard (aka “virtual keyboard” or “touch keyboard”), can be very useful on computers or tablets without a physical keyboard or in cases where the physical keyboard is broken or some of its keys don’t work properly.
Below you’ll find instructions on how to open On-Screen keyboard on Windows 10 by using your mouse or another pointing device,* and how to enable or disable it at Windows startup or inside the Windows environment.
* Note: If you own a physical keyboard, the quickest way to open the on-screen keyboard is by pressing the CTRL + Windows + O keys, or by typing osk.exe in the Run dialog box and clicking OK.
How to Enable or Disable On-Screen Keyboard & Touch Keyboard On Windows 10.
- Enable or Disable On-Screen Keyboard from Ease of Access settings.
- Turn On or Off the Touch Keyboard icon in Taskbar.
- Enable or Disable the On-Screen Keyboard at Sign-in (Startup) on Windows 10/11.
- Completely Disable On-Screen keyboard & Touch Keyboard on Windows 10/11.
Method 1. Turn ON/OFF On-Screen Keyboard from Ease of access settings.
1. Go to Start menu > Settings , or type “settings” in the search area and open them.
2. On the main page of the Settings app, open Ease of access settings.
3. At Ease of Access options, select Keyboard on the left and then set the Use your device without a physical keyboard toggle to ON to open the onscreen keyboard in Windows 10. *
* Note: To disable the on-screen keyboard on Windows 10, just set the toggle to OFF and follow the instructions at step-1 on Method-4 if you want to prevent users from opening the on-screen keyboard in any way (e.g. by pressing the On-Screen keyboard shortcut: CTRL + Windows + O keys, or by typing osk.exe in Run command box).
4. Wait a few seconds and the on-screen keyboard will appear on the screen.
Method 2. Enable/Disable the Touch Keyboard icon in Taskbar.
The second method to open the on-screen keyboard on Windows 10, is by activating and pressing the “Virtual Keyboard” taskbar icon. To do that:
1. Right-click on the taskbar and open Taskbar settings.
2. Scroll down and under the Notification area select Turn system icons on or off.
3. Drag the Touch keyboard toggle to ON to show the Touch Keyboard icon in the Taskbar, or set it to OFF to remove the Touch keyboard icon from the Taskbar. *
* Note: If you want to completely disable the Touch Keyboard icon in order to prevent users to open the Virtual Keyboard from there, read the instructions at step-2 in Method 4.
4. Now, whenever you want to open the on-screen keyboard, just press the Virtual keyboard icon on the taskbar.
Method 3. How to Enable or Disable On-Screen Keyboard at Startup.
If you want to start or to stop the On-screen keyboard to load each time you Sign-in: *
* Note: The following instructions apply to both Windows 10 and Windows 11.
1. Navigate to Control Panel, set the View by to Small icons and open the Ease of access Center.
2. Click Use the computer without a mouse or keyboard.
3. Check the Use On-Screen keyboard option, if you want the Virtual Keyboard to launch when starting your PC, or untick the box if you want to disable it.
Method 4. How to Prevent any user from Opening On-Screen keyboard.
If you want to completely prevent users from opening the On-Screen keyboard (in any way) and disable the Touch Keyboard icon on the Windows 10/11 taskbar, follow these instructions:
Step 1. Rename the On-Screen Keyboard application (OSK.EXE).
1. Open Explorer and navigate to C:\Windows\System32\
2. Right-click at osk.exe file and choose Properties.
3. At Security tab, click Advanced.
4. Click Change Owner.
5. Type Administrators or the name of your admin account and click OK.
6. Hit Apply and OK > OK > OK.
7. Close and re-open the “osk” file Properties.
8. At Security tab select Edit.
9. Then click Add and add Everyone in the list of users.
10. Finally select Everyone and select Deny. Click OK three (3) times to apply the change and you’re done!
11. From now on, no user will be able to open the on-screen keyboard in any way. *
* Note: If you want to remove the restriction, open the Properties of the “osk” application and remove Everyone from the list.
Step 2. Disable the Touch Keyboard icon in Taskbar in Services.
To prevent any user to open the Virtual Keyboard from the Touch Keyboard icon in taskbar, proceed and disable the related “Touch Keyboard” service in Windows Services:
1. Simultaneously press the Windows + R keys to open Run command box.
2. In run command box, type: services.msc and press Enter.
3. Locate and right-click at Touch Keyboard and Handwriting Panel Service and select Properties.
4. Change the Startup type from Manual to Disabled and click OK.
5. Restart your PC to apply the change and your done!
That’s it! Which method worked for you?
Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.
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