A Noob Using Dvorak on the Atreus

My Atreus arrived today and I’m getting rolling. I use a Dvorak layout on a Mac Air so the first thing I found was that if I just plug it in to the Mac with Dvorak active, there’s no question mark so that drove me to RTFM (read the full manual,) which is where I should have started.

I’ve downloaded Chrysalis and get it, I was able to flash to the latest firmware from here.

Hopefully someone here can guide me to the next step. I think I have two options:

  1. Use Chrysalis to map a question mark, and other tweaks I want, flash it and go. I’m keeping the Mac on Dvorak so if I’m on the road I can still use the laptop keyboard. Upside, I never make changes to my machine regardless of the keyboard I use. The downside here is that if I plug into any other machine if it’s on QWERTY that will be a mess, if I switch it to Dvorak it might work.

  2. Switch my machine back to QWERTY, plug in the Atreus then use Chrysalis to remap the whole thing to Dvorak the way I like it, and flash it. The big win here is I can plug it into any QWERTY machine and have hardware based Dvorak. The downside is that if I don’t have my Atreus with me and my laptop I need to switch the laptop from QWERTY to Dvorak (not that this is a ton of work.)

Am I missing anything?

Thank you!

I am planning to use version 2 that you suggest as that is what I already do everywhere with my full size keyboards. I run into the issue a lot that I am SSH into several different machines of different operating systems so having the layout in hardware simplifies everything for me.

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Random find as I’m practicing, you can get a question mark with Fun+K


I just updated my shiny new Atreus for nearly this use case - my solution is to set up two pairs of layers, with a key to toggle between them.

The first set is for use with machines where the OS keymap is set to QWERTY, and the second set is for machines where the OS keymap is set to DVORAK. That second set handles the couple odd keys that you’ve encounter that need to be “reverse-mapped” to work properly. I use layer locks to swap between Dvorak and fake-qwerty, for hosts that are doing the mapping. So my function layer has a key to lock layer3, and my fake-qwerty function layer has a key in the same place to lock layer0,

Here’s my layers, if that’s helpful.


omg that’s amazing. Brain melted.

As a long time Dvorak mechanical keyboard user on Mac, I highly recommend keeping the OS set to Qwerty, setting up your external keyboards to all be in Dvorak, and then use Karabiner Elements to selectively remap the internal keyboard to Dvorak. The benefits are: 1) Your keyboards work on other people’s computers. 2) Programs that read key codes and ignore the OS mapping don’t get confused, and 3) It’s still just one checkbox in Karabiner to turn it off on the internal keyboard if you want to let someone else type on your computer briefly.


Yes, I just made the switch this afternoon! Still adjusting but loving it.