Disabling All Function Keys Except One

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 27, 2024)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Excel in Microsoft 365, and 2021


2

When someone is using Lorenzo's workbook, he would like only the F2 key to be accessible to the user. He wonders if there is a way to disable all the function keys in Excel, with the exception of the F2 key?

There is a way, but it must be done using macros. Specifically, you'll want to use the OnKey method of the Application object. This code will disable all the function keys with the exception of F2:

Private Sub Workbook_Open()
    Application.OnKey "{F1}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F3}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F4}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F5}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F6}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F7}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F8}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F9}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F10}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F11}", ""
    Application.OnKey "{F12}", ""
End Sub

The macro must be added to the ThisWorkbook module and it will run automatically when the workbook is opened. If desired, you could make the macro a bit shorter:

Private Sub Workbook_Open()
    Dim sTemp As String
    Dim J As Integer

    For J = 1 to 12
        If J <> 2 Then
            sTemp = "{F" & Trim(Str(J)) & "}"
            Application.OnKey sTemp, ""
        End If
    Next J
End Sub

You'll want to also make sure that when you close the workbook that you re-enable all the function keys. This macro, again, should be added to the ThisWorkbook module:

Private Sub Workbook_BeforeClose(CANCEL As Boolean)
    Application.OnKey "{F1}"
    Application.OnKey "{F3}"
    Application.OnKey "{F4}"
    Application.OnKey "{F5}"
    Application.OnKey "{F6}"
    Application.OnKey "{F7}"
    Application.OnKey "{F8}"
    Application.OnKey "{F9}"
    Application.OnKey "{F10}"
    Application.OnKey "{F11}"
    Application.OnKey "{F12}"
End Sub

You could also use a shorter version of the same code:

Private Sub Workbook_BeforeClose(CANCEL As Boolean)
    Dim sTemp As String
    Dim J As Integer

    For J = 1 to 12
        If J <> 2 Then
            sTemp = "{F" & Trim(Str(J)) & "}"
            Application.OnKey sTemp
        End If
    Next J
End Sub

There are a couple of caveats to using these macros. First, realize that the only thing that is disabled are the function keys themselves. Variations on the function keys that use combinations of Shift, Alt, and Ctrl are not affected. Second, once the function keys have been disabled, they are disabled for all workbooks you may have open at the time.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (13523) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Excel in Microsoft 365, and 2021.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is 3 + 4?

2024-04-27 11:37:07

J. Woolley

The Tip's macros include the following statement:
    sTemp = "{F" & Trim(Str(J)) & "}"
VBA's Str(Number) function returns a String (text) representation of Number (numeric). A leading space is always reserved for the sign of Number. If Number is positive, the returned string contains a leading space and the plus sign is implied. Therefore, Trim(Str(J)) is necessary. However, the following statement is simpler because the & operator automatically converts numeric values to text:
    sTemp = "{F" & J & "}"


2024-04-27 06:17:08

Mike J

If you wish to disable/re-program the Shift/Control/Alt versions, just precede the codes in this tip with:

Shift + (plus sign)
Ctrl ^ (caret)
Alt % (percent sign)

For a complete list of codes that can be controlled in this way, see:-

https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/office/vba/api/excel.application.onkey


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