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Creating Custom Keyboard Shortcuts in Mac OS X (10.3 +)

Starting with OS 10.3, Apple added a feature for users to create custom keyboard shortcuts to execute menu commands.

Go to System Preferences -> Keyboard & Mouse -> Keyboard Shorcuts

You will see a full list of the keyboard shortcuts already defined, with customized ones placed at the bottom. Editing a shortcut is as simple as clicking the box where the shortcut is displayed, and typing in a new key sequence.

To add a new shorcut, click the + symbol at the bottom of the window. A new dialog box will appear that will ask you for the following: the application the shorcut will apply to, the menu command name, and the key sequence.

Application: Choose the application you want the shortcut to apply to. Choose "All Applications" to make it universal. Choose "Other..." at the bottom of the list to browse to an application that is not listed.

Menu Title: Type in the exact name of the menu command you want to have executed when the key sequence is typed. For example, in iTunes you can add a keyboard shortcut for "Shuffle," which is in the "Controls" menu. In the "Menu Title:" box you will type "Shuffle" (without the quotes, of course.) You have to type it exactly as it appears in the menu, or it won't work. Also, elipses (...) need to be added using the keyboard sequence (Command+;) or using the Character Palette. Just typing three periods will not work, because an elipse has its own character code.

Keyboard Shortcut: Type the exact key sequence you want to use.

When all the information is filled in, click the "Add" button. You will then see the custom keyboard shortcut in the bottom of the main list. When you go to the application the shortcut was added for, you will see the key sequence added to the menu, next to the name of the command. (Note: If you had the application open while creating the shortcut you will have to close it, and relaunch.)