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Z400/Z500/P500: How to swap function keys to just pressing F1 without Fn+F1 ?


The default behavior of F1 through F12 keys on the z500 are set to perform laptop functions like mute, turn sound or brightness up and down and so on.


Is there a way to reverse the way F1, F2.. F12 keys work, so they work like on any other USB regular/traditional keyboard.


I use the basic functionality of the F-keys all the time, when renaming files, searching and so on, and I would like to be able to use them without having to press "Fn" every time.


A new BIOS has just been released should be able to address the concern above.


BIOS Update for Windows 8 (32-bit, 64-bit) - Notebook - version 1.21
Follow the instruction of installation and you should be able to use the function keys without FN right away. If it doesn't you have to enable it in BIOS.


Note: Make note of any settings you have changed in the BIOS Configuration Utility. These settings may have to be re-entered after updating the BIOS.

Attention: Do not power off or restart your computer during the BIOS flashing process, which will cause serious damage and improper functioning of your computer.


Please strictly follow the steps in the link above to avoid any problems.


How to go to BIOS in Windows 8? Check out this article: How to get into BIOS in Windows 8.


How to enable in BIOS: 

  1. In BIOS, go to Configuration tab
  2. Arrow down to find "HotKey Mode"
  3. Press Enter to change from "Hotkey Mode" to "Legacy Mode".
  4. Press Fn+F10 to save the settings and exit BIOS


If you can't find the HotKey Mode, please try reloading BIOS Default Settings.

You can do so by going to Exit > Load Default Settings.

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Rosencratz On 2013-11-07, 18:15 PM

Is there one for windows 7

Cleo_Lenovo On 2013-11-11, 8:24 AM

Rosencratz, I don't see Win 7 verison at the moment. I could ask but unsure if engineering will deliver for Win 7.


I notice a community user who owns P500 + Win 7 said the bios works for him too. For your info P500 using the same BIOS as Z400/Z500.

Dantert On 2013-12-02, 12:10 PM

Does this Bios update work on windows 8.1 too?

lgb On 2013-12-12, 16:36 PM

I too need the function fix ASAP for Windows 7.  When I tried to download the BIOS for Windows 8, in hopes it will work for me, it just says "the version of ROM file is not newer than that of BIOS".  Lenovo, please provide a windows 7 fix!  The function keys are WAY more important for functionality than are the brightness, sound keys, etc.  If I had known this was the way my laptop would come, I would never have bought it.

rajvora18 On 2014-03-11, 6:05 AM

Hi, I got X240 laptop last week. As per the company's policy its been changed from windows 8 to windows 7. How do I alter the function keys i.e. I can directly press F2 instead of Fn+F2?

fabiomartin2006 On 2014-09-11, 11:58 AM

Does this Bios update work on windows 8.1 too? 

fabiomartin2006 On 2014-09-12, 14:51 PM

Does this Bios update work on windows 8.1 too? 

Joestinof On 2015-01-22, 0:20 AM

Hello all, 


I have updated my bios to version 1.21 but i still can't swap my fn keys to normal "F-keys". I can only enable and disable the FN-keys. Also something that isn't working well for me is that the normal F-keys don't work in same games i play. 


I tried searching for the last bios, the verion i had installed before 1.21 but can't find it. Anyone who can help me with this?

Cleo_Lenovo On 2014-12-13, 22:40 PM

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