Finding drivers for an “Unknown Device”

Recently I had to re-install Windows on a friends laptop. After installing all of the drivers from the Dell drivers disk, I was still seeing some “Unknown device” entries in the device manager. If this has ever happened to you here is a trick to hopefully make known the “unknown”.

  1. Click the “Start” button, then search for “Device Manager”
  2. Within the Device Manager window, right click on the “Unknown device” then select “Properties”
  3. From the properties window, click the “Details” tab
  4. Select “Hardware Ids” from the “Property” drop down
  5. You should see something like this: PCI\VEN_10DE&DEV_0DD6&SUBSYS_04B81028&REV_A1
  6. You are interested in the values after “VEN_” and “DEV_”; in this case we have a vendor of “10DE” and a device of “0DD6″
  7. You can now take those values and look them up here: http://www.pcidatabase.com 

This is another path you can take to try and identify a device.  Once identifying the device it may make it easier to locate the appropriate drivers.  Good luck!

MacBook Pro “caps lock” delay

After years, well over a decade actually, of working on a PC I have purchased a MacBook Pro.  The reasons why I purchased a MacBook over another PC is a topic for another post.

Upon spending some real time on the machine I began to notice something troubling, to me at least.  I noticed that I could not turn the “caps lock” on with just a gentle brush of my finger.  So, I did what anyone would do.  I pecked at the caps lock key for a few minutes to try and determine if it was an angle thing, pressure thing or timing thing.  This called for some research!

For the sake of brevity it’s a “feature”.  Apple intentionally added the delay so users would not accidentally trigger the caps lock.  More information can be found here.

This “feature” was a real problem for me as it impacted my typing speed and accuracy.  I was ready to return the machine over this “feature”.  After researching for an hour or so I found three solutions (the order in which I found them).

Solution #1:

This was the first solution I found and I was relieved to find it at the time.  Unfortunately this solution only works until you restart the machine.  The “solution” is to flip some settings back and forth in the system preferences -> keyboard settings.  You can find the steps here.

Solution #2:

Install software!  Two application working in tandem can remove the delay.  The two apps are; PCKeyboardHack and KeyRemap4MacBook.  Both apps are free, from the same developer, and appear to utilize few system resources.

Solution #3:

Get out your AppleScript books.  Here I sit, completely new to Mac’s, and I am researching how and if I can write an AppleScript to address this delay.  Can it be done……the answer is yes.  I wrote an AppleScript that automates the steps from solution #1 above.  Just add the script to your machine, set it up to run when you log in and you are all set. Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for any negative impact the script may have.

 AppleScript |  copy code |? 
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tell application "System Preferences"
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  activate
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          set current pane to pane "com.apple.preference.keyboard"
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end tell
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tell application "System Events"
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          tell application process "System Preferences"
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                    get properties
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                    click button "Modifier Keys…" of tab group 1 of window "Keyboard"
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                    tell sheet 1 of window "Keyboard"
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  click pop up button 4
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  click menu item -1 of menu 1 of pop up button 4
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  click button "OK"
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                    end tell
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                    click button "Modifier Keys…" of tab group 1 of window "Keyboard"
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                    tell sheet 1 of window "Keyboard"
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  click pop up button 4
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  click menu item 1 of menu 1 of pop up button 4
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  click button "OK"
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                    end tell
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          end tell
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          tell application "System Preferences" to quit
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end tell