Not sure which key is the “Command” key on your keyboard or what to hit for “Option”? See below how to find these macOS keys and more on your Mac, Windows PC or Unix keyboard.

First, Flies Do It with Their Legs

That is why they are so busy cleaning them. The myriad of taste receptors on a fly’s legs easily collect dust and dirt, and that prevents their finding—and properly appreciating—food.

You need not step on your keyboard, though, to find the proper keys for shortcuts on your Mac; you can do it by touch, perhaps, and by eye—if you know what you are seeking:

How to Find the Mac Command Key

To find the Command key for macOS keyboard shortcuts on your physical keyboard, look for any of the following:

Keyboard Captions Images
Mac command
cmd
Windows Win
Windows
Unix Meta
META

The Command key is the most prominent key for shortcuts in macOS; it is the standard key for copying (Command C) and pasting (Command V), for instance.

How to Find the Mac Option Key

To find the Option key on your physical keyboard, look for any of the following:

Keyboard Captions Images
Mac option
alt

Windows Alt

The Option key modifies many another action: it changes what symbol an ordinary key produces, for example, and modifies mouse clicks as well as is used in keyboard shortcut combinations.

How to Find the Mac Control Key

To find the macOS Control key on your physical keyboard, look for any of the following:

Keyboard Captions Images
Mac control
ctrl
kntrl

Windows Control
Ctrl
Ctl
Strg

The Control key has several functions, chiefly to turn a mouse click into a secondary (right) click and as part of keyboard shortcuts.

How to Find the Mac Shift Key

To find the Shift key on your physical keyboard, look for any of the following:

Keyboard Captions Images
Mac shift
Windows Shift
Mayús

The Shift key lets you type uppercase letters or access a letter’s alternate symbol; it is also part of many a macOS keyboard shortcut.

How to Find the Mac Function Key

To locate on your keyboard the Function key, look for any of the following:

Keyboard Captions Images
Mac fn
Windows Fn

The Function key is used in combination with the F1 to F12 keys, for example, but also functions in keyboard shortcuts.

How to Find Command, Option, and Other Mac Control Keys: FAQ

Can I change the function of the keys on my physical keyboard?

Yes.

To change the mapping of your function keys with macOS:

  1. Click the Apple logo in the menu bar.
  2. Select System Preferences… from the menu that has appeared.
  3. Go to the Keyboard section.
  4. Make sure you are on the Keyboard tab.
  5. Click Modifier Keys….
    • Tip: You can also start typing “modifier keys” in the System Preferences window’s Search field and use the Reset modifier keys auto-completion suggestion to open this setting directly.
  6. Choose the keyboard connected to your Mac you want to change under Select keyboard:.
  7. Now choose the function you want each key to perform.
    • Note: While you are mostly free to map keys, only the Function (fn) Key can typically perform the fn Function function.
    • Tip: To quickly restore the default configuration, click Restore Defaults.
  8. Click OK.

(How to find “Command,” “Option” and other Mac control keys tested with macOS High Sierra 10.13; updated May 2018; title image: StockUnlimited)