Available article translations:

A keyboard shortcut doesn't work in virtual machine

  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Business Edition
  • Parallels Desktop 11 for Mac Home Edition
  • Parallels Desktop 11 for Mac Pro Edition


  • I am not able to use one of the following key combinations in my virtual machine (VM):

    CTRL + left/right arrow 
    CTRL +  up/down arrow
    CTRL+ SHIFT + left/right arrow 
    CTRL + SHIFT +  arrow


Incorrect configuration setting.


To forward all keyboard shortcuts to the VM:

  1. Open Parallels Desktop preferencesShortcutsOS X System Shortcuts:

Now whenever your virtual machine is in focus (mouse/keyboard control is grabbed by the VM) all Mac system shortcuts will be passed into the virtual machine and they will work as your virtual machine's shortcuts.

Alternative solution

Ctrl+Arrow(s) keyboard combinations are assigned to Mission Control by default in macOS. You can disable these shortcuts in System PreferencesKeyboardShortcutsMission Control:

This will disable the use of shortcuts for Mission Control. However, since Mission Control supports gestures, most people with gesture-capable machines won't even need the shortcuts. Also, you could assign other shortcuts to Mission Control if you liked.

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