Macbook Air Keyboard and Trackpad not working

By | March 24, 2017

I’ve had my Macbook Air (mid 2013) since it was released and it has been absolutely flawless until the other day when my keyboard and trackpad stopped working for no apparent reason.

I was using the Macbook and sat it down to have some dinner then when I came back there was absolutely no input from the keyboard or trackpad. So I held down the power key to force it to turn off thinking a reboot will fix it. I turned it back on and once it got to the login screen again I had no keyboard or trackpad input.

I reset the NVRAM/PRAM and reset the SMC to see if that will fix it, it didn’t. So I booted into Safe Mode and still had no keyboard or trackpad. The only time the keyboard and trackpad worked was in Diagnostic Mode so I know it isn’t a hardware fault. I figured it could be some software issue with macOS Sierra.

I booted into Recovery and completely wipe the drive then reinstalled stock OS X Mountan Lion (I used my Google Pixel XL as a bluetooth keyboard / mouse). Once the system booted again I had no keyboard or trackpad and then I checked the settings to make sure they weren’t disabled in the OS. I decided to update to macOS Sierra and again no keyboard or trackpad input.

In the end I downloaded Linux Mint 18.1 and copied it onto a USB key. I completely wiped the HDD on the Macbook Air and proceeded to install. The installation went smooth and also the keyboard and trackpad are working as I am typing this, now this is where I am at.

I have absolutely no idea why macOS won’t detect the keyboard or trackpad and since it is working in Linux I know it isn’t a hardware fault. I do like how every works in Linux though with the Macbook Air (the screen brightness / keyboard brightness keys, trackpad, Wi-Fi etc).

So I guess for now my Macbook will now be a “Linbook”. At least it is working and maybe one day I will get around to spending hours again trying to find a fix for it.