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There was a time that number lock was enabled by default (at least in a Windows environment). Then, after an update one day, all the sudden the Number Lock is disabled. Why the change? What is it about disabling number lock that would be considered a better user experience?

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I'm not convinced that this behaviour applies to all machines ... I've just checked a bunch of machines (3 laptops running Windows 7, one desktop running Windows XP, a netbook running Windows 8 and two virtual servers running Windows 2008 R2) and they all have numlock on by default. – Bevan Aug 22 '12 at 22:34

Some laptops don't have a dedicated numeric keypad. Some of these laptops activate the function-key numbers when num-lock is activated. And thus lots of users writes "He336 W6r3d" instead of "Hello world" And if this is entered during logon, they only see "*****" ;-)

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And laptops often have tiny warning lights to indicate number lock is turned on. – PhillipW Jun 14 '12 at 19:33

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