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#1 2017-12-16 20:04:51

MacOS Plus
Registered: 2015-12-09
Posts: 110

Apple Bluetooth Keyboard A1255 - Not pairing.

Back story - A couple years ago I found one of these keyboards at a thrift store.  It had leaked batteries jammed inside it which I managed to remove after much headache.  After cleaning up the inside it worked with fresh batteries inserted.  I had a couple of ancient Bluetooth USB dongles from Kensington that had officially been for PC and were bundled with Bluetooth earpieces.  I determined however that OS X (10.5.x in this case) recognized these dongles as supported, and this allowed me to use the keyboard with my PPC machines, primarily my Xserve G4.

  Based on this experience and the fact I had a spare dongle, I grabbed another A1255 keyboard recently from the thrift store.  It wasn't getting power initially, but after some internal investigation I managed to restore continuity to the PCB and it powers up.  There still is a problem with this one though, and Apple's Bluetooth keyboards seem to be notorious for it.  It is detected by the Mac, still showing the original user's name as the device name, but it refuses to pair.

  I've read a number of methods to get around this situation without having to first unpair it with the original computer (which obviously I can't do).  Holding the power button until you're supposed to get to the PIN entry screen doesn't work because it throws an error before offering a PIN.  Beginning from the Keyboard control panel rather than the Bluetooth menu to set it up doesn't change the behavior.  I know the shift-option shortcut to get the extra menu items, mainly to shortcut to Bluetooth Explorer which I have installed.  That's supposed to give you administrative reset options to clear the external device's config, but that doesn't work either.  Later versions of Bluetooth explorer that are Intel-only seem to have deeper factory reset options available, but I don't have an Intel Mac available.

  Does anyone here have a better suggestion on how to wipe out the existing device's saved config so I can start the keyboard as new?  Either it's that or the keyboard truly isn't working and not sending keystrokes during the PIN entry phase.  I know these keyboards can be extremely stubborn at pairing though, so I'm hoping it's not a hardware failure.  Without being able to pair it this would likely be impossible to determine.


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