How to Right Click Without a Mouse on Mac Computers

By John Ruiz

The right-click function in Mac OS X has several key uses, especially if you want to interact with files and menus. Pressing the right-click button on a mouse generally opens up a menu where you can quickly select a command. The action depends on its name and also on the item that you right-clicked. For instance, right-clicking a misspelled word lets you correct it, while right-clicking a file on your Finder application gives you options to delete, rename the file or other action. If your Mac does not have a connected mouse, you can also use other methods to mimic the right-click function.

Hold the "Command" key and press the Spacebar to bring up the Spotlight search. Type "System Preferences" and press the "Enter" key.

Choose the "Universal Access" icon and go to "Mouse & Trackpad." Change the "Mouse Keys" option to "On." Press the "F6" key on the keyboard to turn on "Num Lock," if your "Num Lock" is disabled.

Hold the "Ctrl" key on the keyboard and press the number "5" on the numeric keypad to execute a right-click action. If your keyboard lacks a numeric keyboard, hold both the "Ctrl" and "Fn" keys and press the letter "I" on the keyboard.


Use the "Tab" and "Arrow" keys to navigate through the System Preferences and Universal Access if you have trouble in turning on the Mouse Keys function. If you are using a Macbook or Apple Magic Trackpad, click the "Apple" menu on the upper-left and select "System Preferences." Go to "Keyboard & Mouse" and click on the "Trackpad" tab. Tick the check box labeled "Place two fingers on trackpad and click button for secondary click." Then execute a right-click command by tapping anywhere on the trackpad with two fingers simultaneously.