What Are "Filter Keys"?

by Matt McGew; Updated September 26, 2017

The accessibility options in the Windows operating system make it easier for disabled people to use computers. These options also offer many features that help to make Windows more user friendly. The keyboard is an essential component of any computer system. Filter Keys is a tool used to ensure the accurate entry of data on keyboards for individuals with hand control issues.

Filter Keys

If you hold any key on a computer keyboard, it will continue to register until you release the key. After enabling Filter Keys within Windows, your keyboard will not input repeated keystrokes. You can adjust the sensitivity settings to optimize your keyboard’s settings for a specific disability. This feature is useful if you type while moving or if you have hand control issues.

Enabling Filter Keys

The easiest way to activate the Filter Keys option on a Windows computer is to click the Windows button and selecting the "Control Panel" option. From the Control Panel, select the "Ease of Access" option and then click "Ease of Access Center." Click the option "Make the Keyboard Easier to Use." Select "Filter Keys" to enable the Filter Keys option. Once enabled, FilterKeys reduces the rate at which the keyboard repeats key input. In other words, once you depress a key, Filter Keys imposes a delay before inputting another character. While you're typing, Filter Keys also results in a delay of approximately one-half of a second for each character entered.

Different Options

After enabling Filter Keys, you can customize the parameters to suit your specific needs from the "Filter Keys" option of the "Ease of Access Center." By adjusting the Filter Keys settings, you can change the amount of time that must pass before repeating the input of a specific key. For example, you can specify a specific amount of time that Windows should ignore a keystroke and therefore, slow down the repeat rate for keys.

Notifications

You can also set your Filter Keys options to provide a notification or sound whenever a keystroke is depressed for a specific length of time. You can make this change under the notification options by checking the box that says “Beep when keys pressed or accepted.” The sound option might becoming annoying at times, so you will most likely want to disable this feature after you get used to using the Filter Keys option.

About the Author

Since 1992 Matt McGew has provided content for on and offline businesses and publications. Previous work has appeared in the "Los Angeles Times," Travelocity and "GQ Magazine." McGew specializes in search engine optimization and has a Master of Arts in journalism from New York University.