How to turn on the backlight on a laptop keyboard

If you need to turn on the backlight of a laptop keyboard, but you do not know how to do it, in the instructions below you will find detailed information about this, keys and key combinations for turning on the backlight on laptop keyboards of various brands.

The article also provides additional information on why these keyboard backlight keys may not work and how to fix it.

  • How to turn on the keyboard backlight on a laptop
    • HP
    • ASUS
    • Lenovo
    • Acer
    • Dell
    • MSI
    • Huawei and Honor
    • Additional ways to turn on the backlight
  • If the backlight keys do not work or are missing
  • Video instruction

Turn on the keyboard backlight on a laptop

On laptops that have a backlit keyboard, there is usually a backlight key, and sometimes two keys: one to increase the brightness of the keyboard backlight, the other to decrease it. Usually this is not a separate key, but an additional action of one of the main keyboard keys, you can see it below in the photo.

Depending on your settings and the specific make and model of your laptop, this key can work either by itself or in combination with the Fn key, which can usually be found in the bottom row on your keyboard.


Typically, on HP notebooks, the backlight is turned on by pressing F5 , F9, or Fn + F5 and Fn + F9, respectively.

If your laptop does not have a backlight icon like the one in the photo above, look for it on the other keys and make sure your HP laptop has a backlit keyboard.


The standard keyboard shortcuts for turning on the backlight on the keyboard of ASUS notebooks are Fn + F3 (decrease the brightness of the backlight) and Fn + F4 (increase the brightness). The icon is a keyboard miniature with a light on top. Some models may have a combination of Fn + F7 .

In some cases, the backlight can be turned on by simply pressing the indicated keys without holding Fn.


On Lenovo notebook computers equipped with a backlit keyboard, you will see an icon with an illuminated space bar on the left. If there is no such symbol, it can be assumed that the keyboard is not backlit.

To turn on the backlight on Lenovo, use the keyboard shortcut Fn + Space .


The standard keyboard backlighting keys on an Acer laptop are F9 or Fn + F9 , sometimes F8 (or Fn + F8 ). Some Acer laptops use two keys at once: F9 ( Fn + F9 ) to decrease the backlight level and F10 ( Fn + F10 ) to increase.

The letter A is used as a symbol with a “bursting” light from above.


On most modern Dell laptops, key backlighting is enabled with F10 or Fn + F10 .

But on some models, this combination may differ, for example, you can find the combination Fn + Right arrow .


On MSI notebooks, there are buttons to increase and decrease brightness:

  • Fn + PgUpand Fn + PgDn
  • Fn + “Plus”and “Minus” in the numeric keypad

Huawei and Honor

On Huawei and Honor laptops, the standard backlight key is F3 (Fn + F3) .

The symbol of the key with the light from it is used as an icon.

Additional ways to turn on the laptop keyboard backlight

In addition to the keys, provided that the laptop has a keyboard backlight function, you can use:

  • Windows Mobility Center (you can launch it by searching in the Windows 10 taskbar or Windows 7 search), or press Win + R, type mblctr and press Enter.
  • Branded utilities from the laptop manufacturer, available on the official website in the “Support” section for your laptop model.

What to do if the keyboard backlight keys don’t work or are missing

In case you cannot find the key for turning on the keyboard backlight, it may turn out that your laptop is not equipped with one.

An important point: laptops of the same model, but different modifications can be with or without keyboard backlighting. Let’s take the Acer Aspire 3 as an example – some of the modifications of this laptop will have a backlight symbol on the F9 or F8 key, others will not. In the latter case, the reason for this is the lack of a backlight function.

The next common situation: there are backlight keys on the laptop keyboard, but they do not work , nothing changes when pressed.

As a rule, the reason for this is the lack of the necessary utilities of the manufacturer, as examples can be given, but this is not a complete list and even within the same brand for different models of the utilities may be different:

  • For MSI – System Control Manager (SCM) and other things like SteelSeries Engine for brand gaming laptops.
  • For Acer – Quick Access Application.
  • ASUS ATK Package or Hotkey Utility.
  • Dell Command Utilities, Dell System and Devices manager.
  • HP System Event Utility and other tools from HP.

Sometimes it is possible to disable the backlight function in the laptop BIOS (present on rare models). The above are just examples of software: the sets of necessary utilities may differ even within the same laptop brand – separate software for consumer and gaming laptops, new and old models. But the logic is the same: without these utilities, some of the function keys on the keyboard may simply not work, as described in the instructions (there are also typical function key utilities for different brands of laptops): What to do if Fn does not work on a laptop .

Possible solutions to the problem in this case:

  1. Go to the official support page for your laptop model (enter a query like “laptop model support” in the Google or Yandex search and open the official website in the results) and download the necessary utilities from there (usually they are in the section with drivers).
  2. If you cannot determine what exactly needs to be downloaded, in the comments to this article you can indicate the exact make and model of your laptop (usually on the sticker below) in the comments to this article and wait for my answer, as a rule, I reply to comments once a day


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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