For Seniors: Adjust a Laptop's Keyboard Repeat Rates - dummies

For Seniors: Adjust a Laptop’s Keyboard Repeat Rates

Adjusting your keyboard’s repeat rate settings might make it easier for you to type, and it can be helpful to people with dexterity challenges or those adjusting to using a keyboard for the first time.

  1. To see your options, in the Control Panel, begin to type keyboard in the Search field. In the resulting window, click the Keyboard category link.

  2. In the Keyboard Properties dialog box that appears, click the Speed tab and drag the sliders to adjust the two Character Repeat settings, which do the following:

    • Repeat Delay: Affects the amount of time it takes before a typed character is typed again when you hold down a key.

    • Repeat Rate: Adjusts how quickly a character repeats when you hold down a key after the first repeat character appears.

If you want to see how the Character Repeat rate settings work in action, click in the text box below the two settings and hold down a key to see a demonstration.


  1. Drag the slider in the Cursor Blink Rate section. This affects how fast cursors, such as the insertion line that appears in text, blinks.

  2. Click OK to save and apply changes and close the dialog box. Click the Close button to close the Control Panel window.

If you have trouble with motion, you might find that you can adjust these settings to make it easier for you to get your work done. For example, if you can’t pick up your finger quickly from a key, a slower repeat rate might save you from typing more instances of a character than you’d intended. This is especially helpful for laptops with smaller keyboards, such as netbooks.