Forum Question: How Do I Find Which Application Uses a Specific Keyboard Shortcut?

I went to the Keyboard preference pane to enter a shortcut I wanted for Application A. It didn’t work in Application A, which I understand is explained by the fact that there’s some Application B on my drive that already uses my desired shortcut. Is there a way for me to easily trace the shortcut back to Application B without opening each application and looking for myself? If I could, I might be willing to sacrifice that application.
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John Russell

Comments: One Response to “How Do I Find Which Application Uses a Specific Keyboard Shortcut?”

    12/15/11 @ 10:32 pm

    Just because an application uses a shortcut doesn’t mean that you can’t use it elsewhere. In fact, an application would only use its own shortcuts when it is the frontmost running app. Otherwise, the shortcuts won’t do anything.
    Now the exception is some sort of system utility. For instance, a screen capture utility may be running in the background all of the time and use certain shortcut keys to take a snapshot of the screen. But that should be easy to spot — just ask yourself what you have installed that would be like that. Look at your System Preferences at the bottom and you’ll see the prefs for them, if they have prefs. Look in your Login Items to see what you are launching at startup. Look at your menubar icons to see some other utilities that may be running.
    Or, just see what happens when you use that shortcut. That should give you a clue.
    Otherwise, if a shortcut doesn’t work, then see if OS X is using it.

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