The subject line says it all. My new XPS 15 notebook apparently has no number lock function on its keyboard. I good deal of special characters from time to time and the number lock function is necessary to use character codes like "alt+0149" to get a bullet character. Going back and forth between character map is a real time-wasting non-starter.
I tried pulling up the on screen keyboard, but it doesn't seem to have a number lock function either. Is there some sort of hidden secret on accessing the number lock function?
Go to the onscreen keyboard (run as a program from the start menu), select the "options" key, then tick "turn on numeric key pad", then a NumLock button appears in the bottom right hand corner of the the onscreen keyboard, click it to turn on num lock and use a plug-in keypad for numbers, or turn it off to use the keypad as arrow keys to move around.
Seconded! I too bought an L502X, and due to it's lack of a NumLock, I am unable to play several of my favorite games correctly, without using an external (usb) keyboard, which is cumbersome to say the least. Come on Dell, NumLock is a very UNIVERSAL feature on PCs. What happened?
I just got the same L502 as you and found the same aggrevation. So far, the only options appear to be using the annoying special characters, although i did find there IS a numlock key on the onscreen, you just have to enable the virtual number keypad.. Just click on options and you'll find the option to turn on the number keys and numlock is there and works to do alt commands. Unfortunately, you STILL have to use the virtual for the entire sequence.. hold the REAL ALT key then mouse over the virtual to get working alt letters..
Dell makes good stuff but sometimes i don't think they reallly think out stuff like this .. Certainly ample space to make a FN numlock key..
Hope this helps!
Just for the fun of it, I called Dell tech support to ask where the numbrer lock key is, and how to fidn the number pad. After 5 mins, the guy came back on and said to press Fn key, and "numlock." So I say, that's why I'm callig. I can't find the numlock key (I thought that's what I told him in the first place). So now he's had me on hold for another 17 minutes while he tries to find it. Now let's get serious friends. I have a solution, at least for the keyboard shortcuts for special characters that we're used to using the number pad for: Go to Insert, then find the character you want, then click "Shortcut key" and assign a new shortcut of your own choosing. (and then if you have time, call tech support and make them waste their time trying to find what's not there. it's what we pay them for)
Same problem here, have the 85 key keyboard. No num lock key. Did program the one quick access key to open the special keys. It's a work around but still cumbersom to use. Still have about 80 days to decide whether to keep it or not. It may just go back if this can't be resolved.
this solved it for me (Dell XPS 15 L502X):
Download Quickset (R295126.exe) again, start setup, choose "repair installation", and done.
This solved it for me even without restart of Windows 7 64.
It's not the NumLock it's the Quickset indicator. So Ben's answer worked for me as far as what it is, but I still can't get it to open and control anything (maybe that's what they mean by a "silent app"). After downloading (careful, some of the downloading links within the Dell site don't work and their download program is confusing and just an extra step IMHO).
If your laptop has a backlit kayboard, you may have to turn it back on Fn + F6
Solutions for inserting a special character without the numeric keypad:
Use the CharMap App
Call up the Windows on-screen keyboard. If you click and hold some of the keys, Windows will offer to insert a special key. For example, if you click and hold the dash, Windows will offer to insert an en dash or an em dash.
Click and hold the $, and Windows will offer ¢ or ¥ or ₹, etc.