KEY (Stefan Danes)
This page was last modified 09:57, 22 April 2022 by Gdx. Based on work by Mars2000you.



It's an MSX-DOS 1 tool created by Stefan Danes. You can find it on Dragon Disk 03 and Future Magazine 3.



  • Lists the contents of the function keys (KEY LIST)
  • Enables (KEY ON) or disables (KEY OFF) the display of their content
    • on line 24 of text modes SCREEN 0, 1, 9
    • on line 13 of Kanji text modes 0 and 1, activated with CALL KANJI
    • on line 24 of Kanji text modes 2 and 3, activated with CALL KANJI
  • Changes the text displayed at the bottom of the screen
  • Restores the original contents of the function keys (KEY NEW)
  • Loads/Saves the contents of the function keys from/to a file (KEY LOAD and KEY SAVE)


  • KEY LOAD|SAVE <Device>:<Filename>
  • KEY <Number>,<String>

Note: Contrary to the MSX-BASIC KEY instruction, a space is always required after KEY.


ON/OFF enables/disables display of the function key text at the bottom of the screen.

LIST is used to list the contents of the function keys.

NEW is used to restore the default contents of the function keys.

LOAD is used to load the contents of the function keys from a file.

SAVE is used to save the contents of the function keys to a file.

<Device> is the name for used device. It can only be a disk drive.

If you don't specify the drive, the computer will work with the currently active drive (by default, it's drive A:)

Device type Device name Remark
Disk drive A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H A floppy disk interface can control until 2 drives.

<Filename> is the name of the file with the contents of the function keys to load or save. When a file name is not specified, the FUNCTION.KEY file will be used.

<Number> is the function key number. (1~10)

<String> is a text of up to 15 characters allocated for each function key.

When pressing the specific function key the text is displayed at the location of the cursor. This allows quick entry of text or commands that are often used. The function key text will also be displayed on the last line of the screen, if this feature is active (by default, it is inactive in the MSX-DOS environment).

If the text contains an MSX-BASIC instruction and you want to have it automatically executed upon pressing the function key, add @ at the end of the string. This corresponds to the RETURN/ENTER key.



Standard function keys

See the MSX-BASIC KEY instruction.

Related to



  • MSX1 and higher
  • MSX-DOS 1 / MSX-DOS 2 / Nextor