Turn your caps-lock key into a mute button

Ever wish you could mute your PC's speakers an in instant, like when the phone rings and you need to silence your iTunes tunes? Granted, some keyboards have a Mute button for exactly that purpose, but not all of them do.

Ever wish you could mute your PC's speakers an in instant, like when the phone rings and you need to silence your iTunes tunes? Granted, some keyboards have a Mute button for exactly that purpose, but not all of them do.

If your keyboard falls short in the multimedia-controls department, fear not: There's an easy way to turn your Caps-Lock key into a Mute button. All you need is a popular scripting program called [[xref:http://www.autohotkey.com/|AutoHotKey].

Once you've installed the program, start it, and then do the following:

1. Run Notepad.

2. Copy and paste this line into the document: CapsLock::Send {Volume_Mute}

3. Save the file as Mute.ahk.

4. Double-click the file to run it.

Now, when you tap the Caps-Lock key, it should mute your speakers. Another tap should un-mute them.

If you want to temporarily disable this capability, right-click the AutoHotKey icon in your System Tray and choose Suspend Hotkeys.

This is just the tip of the AutoHotKey iceberg; the program can perform countless other time-saving tasks as well. I'll spotlight some favorites in future posts.

One final note: I can't take full credit for this tip. I first read about it over at Digital Inspiration.

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Rick Broida

PC World (US online)
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