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Bridge keyboards and mice with classic hardware!

The Wombat is a bidirectional ADB-to-USB and USB-to-ADB converter for keyboards and mice.

  • Connect modern USB keyboards and mice to a classic ADB-based Macintosh, Apple IIgs, or NeXT
  • Connect legacy ADB input hardware to a USB-based computer running Windows, OSX, or Linux

No special software or drivers are needed – just plug it in and go.


Now you can finally use a modern optical mouse with your vintage Macintosh, or amuse your coworkers with a retro ADB keyboard on your work machine. ADB-USB Wombat is an indispensable tool for Apple collectors and enthusiasts.


Hardware shipments may be slower than normal due to COVID-19 delays. Please be patient.
ADB-USB Wombat comes fully assembled and tested.

ADB-USB Wombat  ADB-USB Wombat Input Converter, $49
A bidirectional USB-to-ADB and ADB-to-USB converter. This is the Wombat main board. Optional ADB and USB cables may be purchased separately.
  More Info  

Optional accessories for your Wombat:

ADB-USB Wombat black acrylic case  Black Acrylic Case for ADB-USB Wombat, $10
A glossy acrylic cover to protect and showcase your Wombat board. This is a plate style case with open sides and a logo-etched top. Requires assembly.
  More Info  

ADB Cable, 3 ft  ADB cable 3 ft, $5
For connecting the Wombat to an ADB-based Macintosh, Apple IIgs, or NeXT computer. Standard male-to-male S-video cables from eBay work too.
  More Info  

  Find more items in the BMOW store

ADB-USB Wombat is great for breathing new life into your vintage Apple hardware collection. If you love old Macs, you know ADB keyboards are expensive and hard to find, and ADB mice are sticky and trouble-prone. With the Wombat, you can substitute modern USB input peripherals instead. Or if you swear by your old Apple Extended Keyboard, you can use it with your modern computer. Visitors are sure to smile when they see you running 1980s Apple input peripherals on your 2017 machine.

  • No external power source needed
  • On-board power key for remote turn-on
  • Upgradable firmware
  • Works with your favorite mice and keyboards

The Wombat was developed by Steve Chamberlin, here at Big Mess o’ Wires. See the blog archive for technical details on its software and hardware.


The Wombat hardware is compatible with all Apple computers, keyboards, and mice using a mini DIN 4-pin ADB connector, including most early Macintosh computers, the Apple IIgs, and some NeXT computer models. It is also compatible with standard USB keyboards and mice with a USB-A connector. When in ADB-to-USB conversion mode, it works under Windows, OSX, Linux, Chrome OS, or any other operating system that supports USB HID input peripherals.

Security dongles, joysticks, and other less common devices are not supported.


Connect USB keyboards and mice to a classic ADB-based Macintosh, Apple IIgs, or NeXT computer. Set the Wombat board’s jumpers to USB input mode, as shown on the diagram. Power will be supplied from the computer. Use an ADB cable to connect the board’s ADB port to the computer’s ADB port.

A single USB peripheral can be connected directly to the Wombat board’s USB-A port at CON1, or a standard USB hub can be used to connect multiple peripherals at once. When in this mode, the Wombat supports one USB keyboard and one USB mouse, as well as any number of ADB keyboards and mice, all used simultaneously.

Standard bus-powered USB hubs are recommended. Some externally powered USB hubs (with their own independent power supply) can backfeed power into the Wombat even when it’s off, causing problems.

Right Click Behavior – Most ADB mice had only one button, so the USB mouse’s right button is handled one of two ways. Macintosh mode sends a control + click event to the host, which opens context menus in Mac OS 8 and later. NeXT mode sends a true right click event to the host. The default is Macintosh control + click mode. Toggle between the two modes by clicking the USB mouse wheel button (button 3).

Mouse Wheel Behavior – ADB mice did not have a mouse wheel. USB mouse wheel movements will send up/down arrow key events to the host. This works well for document scrolling and file dialogs. If necessary, this “mouse wheel arrow keys” behavior can be disabled using the custom key mapping tool, described below.

ADB Power Key

Power Key – Original ADB keyboards had a power key – a square or rectangular key with a triangle logo that could be used to turn on some later models of ADB Macintosh computers. There’s an equivalent button on the Wombat board that will function as a substitute power key, even when the computer is off.

Connections for Standby Power

Standby Power – If the Wombat is powered from an auxiliary source (optional), it can continue working even when the computer is off. In this case, the PRINT SCREEN key or F13 key on a USB keyboard will also function as the power key to turn on the computer. To use this configuration, set the board’s jumpers to USB+PWR mode, as shown on the diagram (board version 1.1 or later only), and connect a standard USB charger to the board’s USB-B port at CON2. For correct operation, an auxiliary power source must always be present when the jumpers are set to USB+PWR mode.


Connect ADB keyboards and mice to a modern USB-based computer. Set the Wombat board’s jumpers to ADB input mode, as shown on the diagram. Power will be supplied from the computer. Use a USB-A to USB-Mini-B cable to connect the board’s USB-B port at CON2 to the computer’s USB port. This is the same cable commonly used to connect mobile phones and other devices to a computer. In this mode, nothing should be connected to the Wombat board’s USB-A port at CON1.

A single ADB peripheral can be connected directly to the Wombat board’s ADB port, or multiple peripherals can be daisy-chained, using the ADB pass-through connector found on all Apple ADB keyboards. When in this mode, the Wombat supports one ADB keyboard and one ADB mouse, as well as any number of USB keyboards and mice, all used simultaneously.

The ADB peripherals will appear as standard HID input devices to modern Windows, OSX, and Linux computers. No special drivers or other software are needed.

Firmware Updates

The Wombat firmware can be updated to fix bugs and add new features. Download the firmware.hex file from the downloads section below, and copy the file to a USB flash drive.

During the firmware update process, the Wombat board can be powered from an ADB-based computer and ADB cable attached at CON3, or from a standard USB charger and USB-B cable attached at CON2. If powering from an ADB cable, set the board’s jumpers to select USB-to-ADB mode. If powering from a USB-B cable, set the board’s jumpers to Standby Power mode (USB+PWR).

Disconnect all power from the Wombat board. Plug the flash drive directly into the board’s USB-A port CON1 – do not use a hub. Hold the board’s power key button while you connect the power source to turn on the board. Continue to hold the button for a few seconds, until the A and B status LEDs begin blinking rapidly. The update process takes about 10 seconds. When finished, the LEDs will blink slowly together, once per second.


LED Status Codes

The A and B LEDs on the Wombat board display status and error information. (The A LED is labeled RUN on some boards). During normal use, the A LED will turn on when the Wombat has a working data connection (ADB or USB) to the host computer. The B LED will blink whenever there’s keyboard or mouse activity.

During a firmware update, both LEDs are used to indicate update status:

slow alternating blinks of A, then B (1 blink/sec) – bootloader is searching for a firmware file
fast alternating blinks of A, then B (8 blinks/sec) – bootloader is updating the firmware
slow synchronized blinks of A and B together (1 blink/sec) – bootloader finished successfully

If B blinks several times while A remains off, it indicates a bootloader error:

2 blinks – no valid firmware exists on chip, can’t start main Wombat program
3 blinks – no firmware files found on USB drive
4 blinks – error in firmware file (checksum mismatch or illegal data)
5 blinks – error while updating firmware in chip memory

Help Commands

You can interact directly with the Wombat by typing help commands on an attached ADB or USB keyboard. Open an empty text document or command prompt on your computer. The Wombat will “type” its responses to your commands, so they appear on the screen.

Control-Shift-Capslock-T – Cycles between key mapping types US-GENERIC (ANSI QWERTY), ISO-GENERIC (UK and other non-US QWERTY), ISO-FR (AZERTY), and ISO-DE (QWERTZ)

Control-Shift-Capslock-G – Shows the currently active key mapping type

Control-Shift-Capslock-V – Displays the firmware version number

Control-Shift-Capslock-I – Displays the USB vendor and product ID or ADB handler ID of the keyboard and mouse

Control-Shift-Capslock-C – Enters keydump mode. While in this mode, the USB key code is displayed for each key that you press, along with the corresponding ADB key code it’s mapped to (or vice-versa). This can be helpful for troubleshooting key mapping problems.

Control-D – Exits keydump mode.

International Keyboards

Non-US international keyboards are supported by the Wombat. These include country-specific keyboard layouts like British, Canadian French, Danish, Greek, AZERTY variants, QWERTZ, and others. You’ll need to select the appropriate keyboard type in your operating system’s keyboard control panel, in order for the key mappings to work correctly.

System 7 Keyboard Control Panel

Two specific keys on ISO keyboards may require extra attention. If the key above TAB incorrectly behaves like the key to the right of LEFT SHIFT, you can switch ISO mode on/off to correct it. See details in the Help Commands section.

ISO Keyboard Key Swap

USB-to-ADB – Best results are obtained with Apple-brand country-specific USB keyboards, or any brand US-layout USB keyboards. In many countries, the country-specific PC-type USB keyboards have a different symbol layout than Apple ADB keyboards. These PC-type USB keyboards may be used, but key mappings for some symbols will be incorrect where differences exist between the Apple and PC-type layouts.

ADB-to-USB with Mac OSX – The first time you connect the Wombat to a modern Mac, a wizard will appear and attempt to detect the keyboard type. For non-US keyboards, you should select an ISO keyboard type from the wizard. If the key above TAB incorrectly behaves like the key to the right of LEFT SHIFT, even when the Wombat is in ISO mode, you may need to delete the OSX keyboard preferences to force the wizard to run again. Set the Wombat to ISO mode, delete the file /Library/Preferences/, restart the computer, and follow the wizard steps when it reappears.

Windows 7 Text Services and Input Languages Control Panel

ADB-to-USB with Microsoft Windows – Under Windows, when using country-specific ADB keyboards, you’ll need to select an Apple keyboard sub-type when choosing the keyboard type in the Windows preferences. The keyboard type is selected in the Text Services and Input Languages control panel. E.g. select a keyboard type of United Kingdom (Apple), French (Apple), or German (Apple) rather than the default United Kingdom, French, or German. If you don’t see the Apple sub-types listed, you’ll need to install the Apple keyboard driver applekeyboardinstaller64.exe.

Custom Key Mappings

With firmware version 0.3.0 or later, you can create your own customized key mapping tables. Change which keys behave as Command and Option, reassign the function keys to new purposes, or design other custom mappings. See the Wombat Keymap Tool for details.

What are ADB and USB?

ADB connector

From 1986 through 1998, ADB (Apple Desktop Bus) was the standard system for connecting peripherals like keyboards and mice to Apple computers. It was used by the Apple IIgs, as well as all early Macintosh models except the Mac Plus, 512K, and 128K. The ADB connector is a round mini DIN 4-pin, and is physically identical to the S-Video connector.

USB-A connector

USB (Universal Serial Bus) is the dominant standard today for connecting keyboards, mice, and other peripherals to a computer. Nearly everyone will recognize the familiar rectangular USB-A connector that’s used to plug a device into a host machine. USB replaced a variety of earlier standards like Firewire, ADB, and PS/2. Every Apple computer since 1998 has used USB for its input peripherals.

Converting between the two systems involves more than just a physical plug adapter. ADB and USB high-level protocols are fundamentally very different, and also have different signal speeds, signal formats, and voltages. ADB and USB input peripherals have different communication behaviors too. ADB keyboards and mice use event-based reporting, and only communicate when something has changed, whereas USB keyboards and mice communicate their full current state whenever asked.



ADB-USB Wombat latest firmware version: adb-usb-wombat-0.3.5

Older firmware versions: (try these if the latest version gives you problems)


Get One Now

Check out ADB-USB Wombat at the BMOW Store.


153 Comments so far

  1. Steve May 23rd, 2017 1:41 pm

    If Retro USB is out of stock, please check back again in a few days. I’m assembling more as needed.

  2. Will May 31st, 2017 1:13 am

    There was a bug with the @ and < keys on an AZERTY keyboard. Have you fixed it?

  3. Will May 31st, 2017 1:31 am

    Do you know if any bluetooth adapter could work so I’d have a adb machine with a Bluetooth keyboard?

  4. Steve May 31st, 2017 6:14 am

    Firmware 0.1.8 adds ISO keyboard support, see I haven’t been able to test it on a real ISO keyboard yet, can you let me know how it works for you? Please read the change notes for instructions for deleting your OSX keyboard preferences file, otherwise it may not work correctly.

    Wireless keyboards/mice from Dell and Logitech have been tested and work with Retro USB. I haven’t tried any bluetooth keyboards, but if you have one please let me know what you find.

  5. Steve May 31st, 2017 1:46 pm

    More Retro USB boards are now available for purchase.

  6. Anonymous June 1st, 2017 12:22 pm

    Bluetooth adapters generally will not work, unless the adapter just uses Bluetooth as the wireless mechanism but still present itself as a USB HID device (I don’t know of any such wireless keyboard or mouse that does that).

    I don’t think the Retro USB is a full USB host that can recognize Bluetooth adapters. Steve?

  7. Steve June 1st, 2017 12:44 pm

    There’s certainly nothing Bluetooth-specific in the Retro USB host code. It knows how to talk to USB HID input devices, and (in the bootloader) mass storage devices.

  8. Will June 1st, 2017 2:14 pm

    Well I’d like to order one then and I’ll do some testing and report back here. Both azerty kb and bt adapters.
    How can I get one? It’s still not available in store.

  9. Ruben June 1st, 2017 3:00 pm

    Would a PS2 over USB adapter work ?

  10. Chris M. June 1st, 2017 3:05 pm

    Some of the WIDComm bluetooth dongles will appear as a generic composite USB HID device on boot to allow use of the last paired keyboard/mouse before the OS boots. After the Bluetooth stack loads, it will send a magic keystroke to the HID device and the dongle will switch to being a complete Bluetooth receiver. Apple’s built in bluetooth interfaces did exactly this in Powerbooks.

  11. Steve June 1st, 2017 3:43 pm

    The store shows the current stock status, so if it’s sold out there, you’ll have to try again later. I don’t have a pre-order system, sorry. Eventually supply will catch up to demand. The hardware is designed for standard USB input devices, like the ubiquitous PC keyboard and mouse. For other devices like Bluetooth or PS2 with adapters, you’re in uncharted territory. If the device hides away those details internally, and presents a standard USB HID device interface to the host, then it might work. Try it and let me know what you find!

  12. Steve June 4th, 2017 5:52 pm

    More Retro USB boards are now available in the store. These are version 1.1: same functionality, but fewer jumpers needed for setting the input mode.

  13. Steve H June 4th, 2017 10:53 pm

    Thanks so much for putting the time and effort into this adapter. Finally got my hands on one. Your work is so unique, and incredibly useful/fun.

  14. Steve June 8th, 2017 1:19 pm

    Another batch of Retro USB boards are now available for purchase. I think I’m almost caught up!

  15. David Ludwig June 23rd, 2017 11:41 am

    Has the existing stock of boards been updated to 1.2? I was hoping to get one, and to hook it up to my Apple A1243 keyboard, if possible.

  16. Steve June 23rd, 2017 11:46 am

    Yes, v1.2 is shipping now for new orders.

  17. Joe Seeley June 26th, 2017 9:03 pm

    Just got my retro USB last week. Real dumb question, but others may ask as well: using this with a IIGS, how to emulate Open Apple-Control-Esc and Open Apple-Control-Reset? Figure I must be missing something obvious.

    Thanks for making awesome products for my beloved Apple IIs!

  18. Steve June 26th, 2017 9:14 pm

    Reset = the power key, with the options described above
    Open Apple = the Command key (or Windows key on Windows-centric keyboards). Older ADB keyboards used to have both the open apple and the command cloverleaf icons on the same key, like this example:

  19. Joe Seeley July 3rd, 2017 2:12 pm

    Thanks for the info! I am using a nice wireless keyboard/mouse combo with the Wombat which are approximately the same dimensions of the IIGS originals:

    They work great, just one more dumb question: 1) Which key is mapped to the Option key?

    Thanks again!

  20. Steve July 3rd, 2017 8:28 pm

    If you have Windows-style keyboard, alt = option and windows key = command. It works the same as when using a Windows-style keyboard on a modern iMac or MacBook.

  21. C.L. July 6th, 2017 6:07 pm


    I’m enjoying my USB Wombat greatly. Thanks for making this available! I’m loving the scroll wheel -> arrow keys mapping on the latest FW.

    First, a note: I’ve had mixed luck with PS2->USB adapters. I have an older PS2 KVM that I’m using along with the USB Wombat. On my 1.1 board (with the added capacitor, although that didn’t make a difference) 2 out of 4 USB->PS2 adapters I found worked, while the other two did not. The nonfunctional ones work fine on a PC, but on the Wombat board the mouse and keyboard receive power (apparently) but nothing comes through.

    I ordered a functioning one from Amazon with the name “SANOXY USB to PS/2 Adapter.” I would list the functioning USB IDs, but another adapter I ordered (quite different looking, I should add) has the same USB ID and strings but does not work.

    Second, a request: would it be possible to alter the mapping between Alt and Windows keys on a PC keyboard so that it feels like a Mac keyboard?


  22. Steve July 6th, 2017 8:14 pm

    Are you going PS2 -> KVM -> PS2 -> Adapter -> USB -> Wombat -> ADB -> Macintosh? Wow!!

    I hope to provide user-defined key remapping in the future, as other people have requested something similar. The current mapping for alt/windows matches Apple’s own USB keyboards, where “alt” and “option” are printed on the same key, and I’m following the standard they set.

  23. C.L. July 7th, 2017 5:28 pm

    Yup, there’s also a USB -> PS2 adapter on the mouse before the KVM, but that’s just a pin adapter as far as I know.

    Thanks for the response and thanks again for the product.

  24. Adam Goode September 10th, 2017 8:07 am

    I am typing this on my Apple Extended Keyboard II, and the wombat works great!

    A few things though:
    1. Can we map the Power key on the ADB keyboard? Now that we have keymappings, it should be possible, but I don’t see it in the keymap generator page.

    2. Is it possible to enable right modifier keys? Is it a hardware limitation or can it be enabled? says you need to set a register to enable this.

    Thanks for this great product!

  25. Steve September 10th, 2017 1:12 pm

    Both are theoretically possible, but not implemented due to technical difficulties.

  26. Brielle Marie Harrison October 11th, 2017 11:25 am

    I have the wombat and it has been a true miracle worker for me. I am ordering one of these to solve the two device issue. If it works, you may wish to consider recommending them. They’re only $10

    Cute USB Mini 2-Port USB 2.0 Hub Splitter (Black)

  27. defor November 21st, 2017 9:31 am

    Do you have plans to support Macintosh JIS emulation?

  28. Steve November 21st, 2017 12:31 pm

    No JIS plans at the moment, sorry. Eventually I’d like to open the firmware, so other people could pursue additions that are a bit too niche for me to justify the time required to do it myself. Specific 3rd-party trackpads, gamepads, JIS devices, maybe NeXT-specific stuff, etc.

  29. Charles S. December 1st, 2017 11:07 pm

    Is it possible for the wombat to mount a usb flash drive using OS 9?

  30. Steve December 2nd, 2017 8:08 am

    The Wombat is for HID input devices like keyboards and mice. Even if it were possible to mount external storage devices, it would be excruciatingly slow over ADB – like 1 KB per second. 🙂

  31. Patrik from Germany December 27th, 2017 4:40 am

    Hello Steve! I want to give a huge “thank you!” for this magnificent piece of Hard-/Software! Finally a dream has come true: I can utilize optical mouses on my old Macs. I’m starting to put some money aside so I can get more of these for any Mac I own. 🙂 Again, thanks! Really!

  32. derek January 12th, 2018 10:25 pm

    Thanks so much for creating this little device it is amazing!

  33. Charles H February 2nd, 2018 9:02 pm

    Steve, I have an old Summagraphic’s Bit Pad Plus digitizing pad that was originally used with my Mac Plus – way back when. Would there be any problem using the Wombat to connect that pad to a Mac Pro running OS X? (Fully understanding that the driver is going to be a whole ‘nother can of worms.)

  34. Steve February 2nd, 2018 10:21 pm

    A digitizing pad probably won’t work, sorry. The Wombat can translate standard mouse and keyboard events from ADB to USB, but doesn’t know about other devices like tablets, joysticks, dongles, etc.

  35. Charles H February 3rd, 2018 12:39 pm

    Drats! Well another piece of ancient technology that’ll gather even more dust. But many thanks for your rapid and honest reply.

  36. Leslie February 21st, 2018 8:14 pm

    Hi Steve. Would this connect an Apple Extended Keyboard M0115 to a PC with little to no issue?

  37. Steve February 22nd, 2018 7:03 am

    Yes, with the Wombat you could connect the AEK to any modern USB computer.

  38. Greg from Austin March 30th, 2018 6:43 pm

    Thanks to your magical Wombat, I am typing this on a completely cherry AEK II. It was owned by a film production studio in Hollywood. Someone splashed coffee on the lower right corner. This resulted in the Num-pad \’.\’ key becoming unresponsive and the \’Enter\’ key sticking. The incident must have occurred when it was relatively new because they put it back in the plastic bag it shipped in and stuck it in a storage closet in the original cardboard box. After all this, it sat marked \”SURPLUS\” for an emergency, I guess, for like 20-26 years. I was able to completely disassemble it, washed the coffee off the keys with some sudsy dawn and disassembled the two ALPS switches, cleaning the guts.

    The end result of all this was a cosmetically perfect, un-yellowed AEK II. There is not a stain or mark on this thing and it now works absolutely perfectly. The cream ALPS switches feel crisp and new!

    Thank you! Typing on this takes me back to my second Mac, a IIci, back in 1990.

  39. Patrick April 12th, 2018 12:30 am

    Got my wireless keyboard with built in trackpad working on my IIgs! Trackpad is a bit slow on the Logitech K400 I tried so I’m going to test some other keyboards as well to see if there is any difference. Thank you!

  40. Adam May 11th, 2018 11:07 pm

    Would this work with ADB joysticks such as the Gravis MouseStick II?

  41. Steve May 12th, 2018 6:23 am

    Nope, sorry – it’s designed for keyboards and mice. See some of the comments above yours for more discussion of this.

  42. Tim Eberle June 6th, 2018 5:08 am

    I have a question. I would like to hook up a keyboard from a Macintosh II Classic to this device and then run the USB cable to a raspberry pi 3 I just wanted to know if this is doable or not? Thank you for your time.

  43. Steve June 6th, 2018 6:07 am

    You might need to use a powered USB hub with the RPi, because I think it can’t source as much current to USB devices as a normal computer can. Other than that it should work.

  44. Tim Eberle June 6th, 2018 7:34 am

    Okay that’s no problem at all 🙂 I looked at some other options this one looks the easiest and it looks the cleanest too. You really made my day. I’ll be placing an order in a few weeks. And I’ve shown my cousin your site and he’s likes some of your products for his old Mac equipment too! Thanks.

  45. Al Thoms July 10th, 2018 9:26 am

    Can not get the Wombat to work fully in the ADB to USB mode. Mouse pointer moves and selects.Keyboard has no response other than B light on Wombat flashing twice on keystroke. Any suggestions?

  46. Sarah July 12th, 2018 1:24 pm

    I’ve got a rev 1.0 ‘Wombat’ and it seems a little flakey. I’ve updated its firmware to the latest and sometimes it just decides to crash; the light that usually flickers when USB input is detected just stops. Unplugging my USB hub and waiting for a few seconds before reconnecting it gets it going again. The weird thing is sometimes it’s really “crash happy” and others it’s rock solid for quite a while.

    Any ideas on getting it stable (tried different hubs, peripherals and such) or modifications that are required?

  47. Steve July 12th, 2018 2:45 pm

    Please use the “contact” link at upper-right for support email, if you have specific customer support issues. The web page comments aren’t monitored regularly and are more intended for general-interest feature-related inquiries.

    @Al Unfortunately I’m not sure what more to suggest. If this is with your OS 9 machine, maybe it’s an OS configuration issue there? The hardware is covered by a 1-year warranty – use the contact link to get in touch if you suspect a hardware problem and want to do a product return. @Sarah could be power glitches, you might try running with a standby 5V power supply connected to CON2, if your ADB power supply is questionable.

  48. Peter Armstrong July 30th, 2018 11:50 am

    Hi! I have an old Power Macintosh G3 Tower and keyboard that work well on Mac O.S. 8.6– but the ADB Mouse no longer does. The trackballs (I have three ADB mice and switch them out frequently now) stick, even with daily cleaning of the inner wheels and mousepads. So I’d like to connect an optical USB mouse (like the Macally ICEMini I use on my MacMini) to the G3 so that I can continue to operate the vintage versions of PageMaker 6, Poser 4, and Photoshop 5 that I use for personal creative projects. I’m willing to purchase the Wombat, case, and spare ADB cable if that setup will work. Please– PLEASE– reply and let me know if this is solution I need or if you know of another. Respectfully, Peter (Dr Zik).

  49. Steve July 30th, 2018 2:37 pm

    Yes, that’s handled by the USB-to-ADB feature described above. Check out the video for a demonstration. You don’t necessarily need the case or cable accessories, but they make it more convenient to use the Wombat.

  50. smmi August 2nd, 2018 1:48 pm

    hey Steve… I ordered a Wombat on August 1 – will the device ship with 0.3.0 firmware?… thanks in advance…

  51. Steve August 2nd, 2018 3:51 pm

    The current lot of boards has 0.2.2 pre-installed. If you want the key remapping feature that was added in 0.3.0, you can update using the “Firmware Updates” process above.

  52. Sean Manning August 11th, 2018 6:52 pm

    Is there a way to increase the speed of the mouse movement in the Wombat? I using an Apple Desktop Bus Mouse II hooked up to my 2008 Mac Pro through an Apple Extended Keyboard and even though I have the Tracking Speed set to Fast (maximum) in the Mouse System Preferences it is still pretty slow. With my Magic Mouse I can move across the full width and height of two side by side monitors (30″ and 24″) without ever lifting my hand or the mouse off of the table, just extending my fingers. Thanks.

  53. Steve August 14th, 2018 7:50 am

    Mouse speed is adjusted through the operating system of whatever computer the Wombat is connected to. There’s no way to modify the speed on the Wombat hardware, sorry.

  54. Sean Manning August 14th, 2018 11:54 am

    The issue was that I had both both mice connected at the same time and while the Mouse Preferences panel (which was customized for the Magic Mouse and all of its capabilities) settings affected the ADB mouse it seemed to use the same parameters (acceleration scaling, etc.) for the Magic Mouse for both mice. When I disconnected the mice and then plugged in just the ADB mouse the Mouse Preferences panel became very basic and the settings were then appropriate for the ADB mouse. The ADB mouse now works as expected. Posting this follow up in case anyone else has the same confusion.

  55. Sean Manning August 30th, 2018 9:38 pm

    I noticed an unusual issue. When I start my 2008 Mac Pro with the Wombat connected to a USB port, the CD tray ejects and the startup screen gives the “Prohibitory Symbol” (circle with slash through it) which, according to means that it can’t find a System Folder to boot from. My guess is that it thinks the Wombat is a USB thumb drive that I might be trying to boot from. If I unplug the Wombat it boots normally. Same thing happens whether I have a keyboard and/or mouse connected to the Wombat or not.

  56. Johan Trönninger October 20th, 2018 2:00 am

    @Sean Manning, I have the same issue with my Mac Pro 2008. It also ejects the DVD tray but it has been doing that since I replaced the original DVD drive, so it is probably not connected.

  57. Johan Trönninger October 20th, 2018 3:10 am

    @Sean Manning, just to clarify; I am also having the same boot issue with the Wombat and my Mac Pro 2008. In case that wasn\’t clear in my original post.

  58. Scott Pope October 27th, 2018 10:45 am


    Will the Wombat work with a Wireless Keyboard/Trackpad Combo like the Logitech K400r for instance?

  59. Steve October 27th, 2018 11:03 am

    Wireless keyboards and mice are OK so long as they aren’t Bluetooth.

  60. Roy Caratozzolo November 2nd, 2018 3:57 pm

    So this won’t work on a Mac Plus? I was about to get it to use in the printer port… it looks like an ADB port 🙁 I hate the plus keyboard!!!!

  61. Steve November 2nd, 2018 4:26 pm

    The Mac Plus is not ADB – it uses a totally different type of keyboard and mouse shared with the Mac 128K and 512K.

  62. Bennies November 5th, 2018 10:25 am

    We are looking for an adapter to connect current USB devices (keyboard, trackball) via a KVM extender to an AT keyboard input on a legacy system.
    • Is ADB the same as PS/2?
    • Can your WOMBAT also function on an AT-keyboard input?
    • If not, do you have such a device?
    I am looking forward to your (quick) reply.

  63. Steve November 5th, 2018 8:31 pm

    No, sorry. AT and PS/2 keyboards were used with 1980’s IBM computers. ADB is a completely different standard for 1980’s and 1990’s Apple keyboards and mice.

  64. tlharv November 13th, 2018 7:50 pm

    Hi Steve,

    As soon as I saw this, I couldn’t order it fast enough. ADB keyboards and mice are hard to find, and this will give me tons of options for what to use with my SE. Is there any kind of noticeable lag with keystrokes or mouse action by using the Wombat as a signal converter? I assume not but wanted to check.

  65. Steve November 14th, 2018 7:51 am

    There’s no perceptible delay – you can watch the videos for an example. If you measured it very accurately, the delay is probably in the 10-20 milliseconds range.

  66. Joey November 14th, 2018 8:03 am

    Just a High Five comment here…. Awesome device that let’s me use my AppleDesign computer with my work computer. Gets a lot of attention from my coworkers, especially those that have used Macs for years. THANKS

  67. Joey November 14th, 2018 8:05 am

    Sorry, That previous comment should have read: AppleDesign Keyboard

  68. Mike January 5th, 2019 12:17 pm

    I have my Wombat and my AEK battleship running smoothly. Even have media keys mapped to function keys via Keyboard Maestro. Great product!

    I’m confused about the Power key, however. The description above implies that either (a) the power key on the keyboard works or (b) the blue button on the Wombat works as a substitute. I have the Wombat in ADB mode, plugged into my AEK at Con3 and the iMac at Con2. Con1 is empty. Pressing the blue button does nothing. Am I missing something?

  69. Steve January 5th, 2019 12:30 pm

    The power key is for early ADB-equipped Macs like the Mac II series or Power Macs. It’s a true switch that makes an electrical connection to turn on the computer, rather than being a normal keyboard key. For the Wombat, it’s only relevant when in USB-to-ADB translation mode. USB-equipped Macs like the iMac don’t work this way and the physical power key isn’t used.

  70. Mike January 5th, 2019 12:33 pm

    Ah. Shame, that. But, hey. Cheers for the explanation!

  71. Jay January 23rd, 2019 6:16 am

    Hi Steve.

    Using a Wombat with an Apple IIgs and a USB keyboard.

    I don’t seem to be able to get Control – apple – reset to reboot the computer. Control reset works (using the printscreen key as reset). But combining Control – WIndows – Reset seems to only send a plain reset (no forced warm boot). For giggles tried Control – Win – TheButtonOnTheWombat- same result. Anything I could be doing wrong?

  72. Steve January 23rd, 2019 11:49 am

    Send me a direct mail (see Contact at the page’s upper-right) and I can help you troubleshoot. The three finger salute also requires holding down all three keys for a longer moment than normal keypresses.

  73. Chris February 5th, 2019 9:34 pm

    Is there any reason why a Unicomp SpaceSaver M keyboard wouldn’t work with this? I’d love to hook up a “modern” USB keyboard and mouse to my IIgs.

  74. Steve February 6th, 2019 7:55 am

    I’m not familiar with that keyboard, sorry. If it’s a standard USB keyboard and not bluetooth or otherwise exotic, then it should work fine.

  75. Chris February 6th, 2019 9:12 am

    Here’s the keyboard: They don’t list power draw, but I know the old Model M the Unicomps descend from drew more current than average.

  76. Will February 13th, 2019 2:09 pm

    Hi Steve

    Is it possible to use an ADB keyboard on an iMac (Rev a-D) running Mac OS 8-8.5? If so how? I have a Wombat but it show no activity?

  77. Steve February 13th, 2019 4:23 pm

    Try updating to firmware 0.3.1, it has a fix for USB keyboard emulation under Mac OS 8 and 9.

  78. Alonso February 19th, 2019 7:58 am

    Its posible to make the power key on ADB keyboards usable in modern PCs?
    I mean, can be the wombat modified to interpret the ADB power on key signal and drive it a pin header connected to the power switch header in a motherboard?

  79. Kay Yu March 1st, 2019 5:06 pm

    I just received it for my Apple IIgs. fantastic product! I love it.
    just small annoyance to use for Apple IIe software: I have to press ‘Caps Lock’ key to make it upper case mode everytime I powered on…
    Is there anyway to set this device to ‘Caps lock’ On when it powered on ?
    This devide is just perfect except this one.

  80. jake March 9th, 2019 12:19 pm

    lmao isnt it funny that adb is identical to s video? i was wondering why it looked familiar lol

  81. Chas March 15th, 2019 9:00 am

    Has anybody tested this specifically with the Dvorak keyboard layout? How about Electric Dvorak on System 6?

  82. Derf March 21st, 2019 4:16 pm

    Great Product, using the Wombat 1.2.3 to type this comment from IIGS ADB keyboard. Keep up the good work. Enjoy reading your blogs, good technical descriptions.

  83. Ralph April 9th, 2019 10:32 pm

    The fixes from firmware 0.3.1 targeted at Mac OS 9 seem to have positively impacted powermacs in general. The few minor issues I had during boot sequence do not show up anymore with adb->usb emulation. Boot keys do work! Thank you for this project, Mr. Steve.

  84. Hal May 6th, 2019 7:04 pm

    I’m running OpenStep 4.2 in a virtual machine and the mouse jumps erratically. Apparently it’s because the software is designed for the NeXT mouse, which has a different “step”. Will your adapter mimic that after it turns it into USB mouse code? In other words, does it maintain the steps of the ADB mouse so that it won’t jump?

  85. Steve May 7th, 2019 6:36 am

    The Wombat has been tested on real NeXT and Mac hardware. If you’re running in a virtual machine on a PC, I don’t think you’ll see any difference vs using a regular USB mouse.

  86. Hal May 7th, 2019 7:25 pm

    Thanks for the reply. Are you saying that it wouldn’t be worth it for me to try an ADB mouse with the Wombat converter because it wouldn’t look any different to the virtual machine than a regular USB mouse does?

  87. Steve May 8th, 2019 7:10 am

    That’s right. But I’ve never used OpenStep inside or outside a VM. A NeXT user forum could probably give you more information.

  88. James July 1st, 2019 9:04 am

    The left shift, alt, CTRL and both apple keys are not working on my AEK II. I have tried different firmwares (3 of them). Is this a known problem?

  89. James July 1st, 2019 9:48 am

    Follow-up to above comment. There is a scratch on the keyboard PCB through the trace for all of the above buttons. It isn’t anything to do with the Wombat board. Sorry for the pointless comment.

  90. Jared Fry July 23rd, 2019 6:54 am

    Many of the keys of my M0116 aren’t going through and some of the keystrokes are typing a “v” when the key is released. Am I doing something wrong?

  91. Steve July 23rd, 2019 9:02 pm

    Sounds like a keyboard or other hardware problem somewhere in the loop. For customer support issues, please contact me directly for 1-on-1 help, using the Contact link at upper right.

  92. Krishna Draws July 27th, 2019 5:46 pm

    I updated from the 0.2.2 firmware to 0.3.1 and had some issues when using an Apple Extended Keyboard II with both a 2018 Mac mini and a 2014 MacBook Pro. On the Mac mini, triggering caps lock would cause the mouse cursor to freeze intermittently. On the MacBook Pro, an almost 1 second delay would occur every time I switched from CAPS LOCK to lowercase and vice versa – making the typing experience somewhat frustrating. Also, the caps lock light would not come on. I’ve downgraded the Wombat’s firmware to 0.3.0 and re-tested. The problems seem to have gone away -and the caps lock light comes on when the key is pressed. I’ll test this version of the firmware on my Mac mini and report back if anyone is interested.

  93. Krishna July 27th, 2019 6:12 pm

    Just tested 0.3.0 firmware with Mac mini and my Apple Extended Keyboard II – works just great! Caps on light works, when active. Unrelated question: Is it safe to hot-unplug the Wombat from the computer’s USB port if the Wombat is connected to an ADB keyboard? Or would I need to shut down the Mac to unplug the Wombat? I seem to recall ADB ports being finicky and requiring the Mac to be shut down before unplugging them. Thanks!

  94. Steve July 29th, 2019 4:12 pm

    Yes, you can safely hot-plug or unplug the USB side of the Wombat.

  95. Christopher Price August 6th, 2019 3:51 pm

    Looks like you might be out of town for a bit, I am eager to get a Wombat and perhaps another FloppyEmu, is there an ETA for new stock? Many thanks, loving my FloppyEmu RevB

  96. Steve August 10th, 2019 7:34 pm

    I expect to have more Wombats available in about a week. More Floppy Emus in 1-2 weeks.

  97. Ruben Aparicio August 17th, 2019 2:13 pm

    Hi, does current firmware work with current Apple Keyboards?

  98. Steve August 17th, 2019 2:38 pm

    Is there a particular keyboard you have in mind? The Wombat’s been tested with a wide variety of USB keyboards including Apple ones. It does not work with bluetooth keyboards. I don’t have any of Apple’s hybrid bluetooth/USB keyboards to try, but it should be OK as long as it behaves as a standard USB keyboard.

  99. Tommy Thorn August 25th, 2019 8:07 pm

    This is really awesome and I love how it’s dual action. Alas, there were none in stock, but I’ll check back.

  100. John William September 2nd, 2019 10:34 pm

    I have one question to ask! I have two keyboards on my table and it is a pain on the butt. Because of space factor. Can I use my PC keyboard/mouse to share it between the PC and Apple/gs via a click of a switch? Or can I use the apple // extended keyboard for my apple/gs to be shared between the apple//gs and/or PC using this device?

    Thanks in advance.

  101. Ruben Aparicio September 3rd, 2019 1:17 am

    Hi Steve,

    I only have the current hybrid Apple magic keyboard in mind. This is currently for sale and has a very small foot print plus very good typing quality (not like the current laptops…). I can plug it with a lightning cable to a Raspberry Pi or a Windows/Linux PC besides a Mac and it worls well in USB mode. However it must be doing something different as Wombat does not react to keystrokes. It would be great if you could debug that.



  102. Steve September 3rd, 2019 6:33 am

    John – The Wombat is a USB/ADB protocol translator, not a KVM switch, so unfortunately it can’t be used in the way you proposed. Ruben – As mentioned I don’t have any of Apple’s hybrid bluetooth/USB keyboards. If I can manage to borrow one, I’ll try to find time to look at it. Raspberry Pi runs a full Linux OS with bluetooth OS support, which may be why the bluetooth/USB hybrid works there.

  103. Martin September 4th, 2019 5:28 am

    Two questions;
    Is the ADB port on the Mac 8600 supported?
    If I place a USB switch between this device and my keyboard/mouse, is there any reason I can’t use them with another PC?

  104. Ruben Aparicio September 4th, 2019 5:54 am

    Hi again Steve,

    I have used satisfactorily the Hybrid Apple Magic Keyboard in Linux system without bluetooth devices and it works too. Its something going on at USB level.

  105. John William September 4th, 2019 11:17 am

    Hey Steve,

    Thank you for your fast reply. I have one more question to ask. I know it have nothing to do with this device, but is there a small flat surface lifter that I can put it on top of the Apple //gs and I can just place the keyboard on top of that surface? This way I can use the keyboard and mouse on top of the apple //gs without covering the ventilation hole on top of the case of the apple //gs and lift it a little bit so air circulation can enter Apple //gs on top of the case and type and use the mouse that way.

    Again…please forgive me for asking an off-topic question. I thought this would have solved my keyboard problem and lack of space but it didn’t.

  106. Steve September 9th, 2019 3:46 pm

    Firmware 0.3.2 fixes compatibility problems with the Apple Magic Keyboard model A1644.

  107. Ruben September 10th, 2019 6:58 am

    The new firmware is great news ! Top man ! 🙂

  108. Jason Taylor September 14th, 2019 10:03 am

    I had the same issues as Krishna with both an Apple Extended Keyboard and two different Apple Extended Keyboard IIs. Pressing caps lock caused two USB-C MacBook Pros to lock up (running 10.12 and 10.13). I had to disconnect the Wombat to get control of my Mac back again. Downgrading to 0.3.0 fixed the issues. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help triage and test! Outside of that small issue this thing is AMAZING and very impressive!

  109. Steve September 14th, 2019 3:17 pm

    Thanks, I confirmed this caps lock behavior. If you need to run the AEK on current MacOS, then I recommend staying with firmware 0.3.0 for now.

  110. Steve September 14th, 2019 4:54 pm

    The ADB-to-USB mode caps lock LED and MacBook freeze problem is resolved in firmware 0.3.3.

  111. Jason Taylor September 15th, 2019 3:37 pm

    Thanks so much! I tried it and it works great!

  112. Richard Moore November 6th, 2019 11:09 pm

    Nevermind my previous question, I forgot that it matters how you release the buttons as well. I guess I forgot how these work after so many years.

    As an interesting follow up, with the Apple Magic Keyboard, it will automatically revert to the bluetooth once the wombat is turned off (such as turning off the IIGS) physically disconnecting the lightning/usb cord is not necessary, so it’s almost like having a built in keyboard switcher.

  113. Pedro November 17th, 2019 7:21 am

    Hello, I am
    Can I use wombat adb to usb for a mod of an ibook g3?
    I think it has an adb 30 pin keyboard?

    If not, is there any previous adapter to do so?
    Thank you very much

  114. leighferon November 28th, 2019 5:36 pm

    im here because of gravis firebird adb mac joystick, got in goodwill for 5$…any chance this would work with joysticks?

  115. Steve December 1st, 2019 7:18 am

    No, sorry. Please see the “compatibility” section above. Security dongles, joysticks, and other less common devices are not supported.

  116. Richard Moore December 3rd, 2019 10:36 am

    I just thought I would update my last post. I gave up using the magic keyboard, as I think it was taking too much power and preventing a logitech universal receiver from also working intermittently. (To be fair, it might have been the USB 3 hub instead, or the distance between the receiver and mouse.)

    In addition, it was a hassle to plug/unplug the magic keyboard (when both were powered up) to look up troubleshooting info on the other computer.

    My new setup is using an old apple wired compact usb keyboard. It includes two USB ports (one either side of the keyboard), which i have the logitech universal receiver plugged into. The mouse is a logitech m585, it has a button that allows me to switch between using it with the IIGS, or bluetooth connection to another device (I am using it with my iPad Pro 10.5.) This new setup is working better.

    The only tweak I had to do was to remap the switch/power key to F12, for easier apple-control-reset, as the compact keyboard doesn’t have the default reset key (printscreen or f13 I think.)

  117. Richard Moore December 28th, 2019 2:54 pm

    Hello. I have been using the Wombat for a while, and I have one suggestion I hope you will consider implementing. I have a Logitech M585 mouse, it works great with the wombat, except that the scroll wheel is very, very sensitive. I tend to move the scroll wheel when I don’t intent do, which causes a series of system beeps in GS/OS, when dialog boxes appear that won’d accept up/down commands..

    I would love a user option to disable the scroll wheel, or at least change the keyboard key that is pressed when scrolling up/down to a “no press” option. Using the same web tool as can be used to change the key presses would be an ideal place to configure both the keyboard and mouse scrolling.

  118. Steve December 29th, 2019 12:50 pm

    good idea.

  119. Richard Moore February 15th, 2020 7:00 pm

    I am still trying to troubleshoot an issue with the mouse one gsos. I get a very choppy mouse after using the wombat for awhile, but I am not sure if it is the iigs/wombat/or m585 wireless mouse.

    At random (usually after my daughter is using it for an hour or so) the mouse becomes very choppy. I can fix it by shutting the aux power supply down to the wombat, and it restores normal operation (without shutting down the iigs).

    At first, I swapped from a magic keyboard to an Apple usb keyboard (and eliminated a usb hub) but it is still am getting the issue. Now I swapped to a wired mouse, and will see if it reoccurs.

  120. Richard Moore February 25th, 2020 5:15 pm

    Just a quick update. I tried a couple of mice, but for some reason they both had lots of lag when using under GSOS.

    One was an older 15 year old wired mouse, the other was a brand new HP mouse just purchased from Best Buy, both were very sluggish and lagged behind the gsos system I tried both using the mice with my apple keyboard, and using it with no keyboard attached to the wombat (mouse usb or dongle connected only, no hub.). Both mice that lagged with the wombat worked without issue when plugged into my 2017 iMac, they are on the same desk as the IIGS, so I pretty much ruled out any radio interference (and should not have effected a wired mouse anyway.).

    I had to revert to using the m585 mouse with my IIGS, but have been too busy to see if the occasional choppiness I mentioned above returns or not. (I moved the dongle from the right side of the keyboard to the left side to see if there was any difference. between the two USB ports on the apple keyboard.)

    What other usb (wired or wireless) mice are other wombat users using? I would like to get a known good working model mouse to rule in or out if it is something with my IIGS/Wombat/ or I just happen to have two mice that don’t play well with the wombat.

    Steve, has any work been done to allow the reassigning (or elimination) of key presses for the mouse wheel? I would love to try a beta firmware should you decide to implement it in a future firmware.

    I had one more idea, but I don’t know if it can be implemented easily. Cold the eject button an an Apple USB keyboard be used for a reset key? I don’t know if that button has a standard code to allow it to be remapped, so it may not be possible. Still, it would be nice to reassign that key to use as a reset, vs my current configuration of f12 if possible.

  121. Mike February 25th, 2020 9:13 pm

    I use a Logitech wireless mouse/keyboard. Works fine with pretty much everything except for Brutal Delux programs I have tried.

  122. xboxown February 27th, 2020 5:43 pm

    Guys I have one serious question to ask. If the answer to that question is yes..then I will buy it immediately. Can I use this device to hook a normal PC keyboard to run on both on my Apple //gs and my PC?

  123. xboxown February 27th, 2020 5:45 pm

    I want to clarify it. I do not mean a KVM switch. What I mean is this…can I use this device and turn a PC keyboard to work on the Apple //gs and then I get a KVM switch and then from that switch I can hook this one keyboard to switch between PC and my Apple //gs? That is my question just to be clear.

    Thanks in advance.

  124. Steve February 28th, 2020 11:09 am

    I’ve used a Dell wireless mouse and keyboard KM117. Also tested with many USB wired mice from Microsoft, Logitech, Dell, and no-name generics. Tested with the Dell wireless KM117 keyboard and many wired USB keyboards from Dell, Apple, Microsoft, HP, and generics.

    In USB-to-ADB mode, the USB mousewheel is translated into up/down arrow keypresses, which accomplishes something similar in most software. Clicking the mousewheel (button 3) toggles control-click emulation for button 2 on/off. Some Mac software responds to control-click in a similar way to a right mouse button click in Windows.

    I’m not sure I understand the question about the KVM but I think the answer is yes. In USB-to-ADB mode the Wombat is basically a black box takes USB keyboard/mouse input and generates ADB keyboard/mouse output.

  125. xboxown February 29th, 2020 10:22 am

    Thank you. Next week I am ordering it official. I want it for my Apple //s. I have literally one keyboard and mouse on the table and I do not have space to fit more keyboard mouse. Ones I buy a KVM switcher…third party….and with this device I can then use only one keyboard and mouse for my PC, my Apple //gs, and even for my third device. Next week I am ordering it.

  126. xboxown February 29th, 2020 10:33 am

    I will be buying this device so I have one keyboard and mouse to control my PC and my Apple //gs at the same time.

  127. Jon April 7th, 2020 2:56 pm

    I know this was asked in the past with the answer being \”possible\” but there may be technical difficulties. Using the Wombat in ADB mode, I would like to be able to map the \”Power Key\” to something, such as an additional function key, but I don\’t see a way to do this with the mapping tool. Keycode dump simply states \”0x7F7F is not mapped\”.

    Any progress on if this is possible?

  128. Steve April 8th, 2020 6:32 am

    There haven’t been any changes to the Wombat firmware for a while, but I’m still thinking about the power key and a few other possible items.

  129. Anonymous April 7th, 2020 4:36 pm


    Thank you for the Wombat! It has worked for me flawlessly, for the last two years! I have tried many similar products, and yours works with no problem as soon as I plug it in!

  130. Steve April 8th, 2020 12:02 pm

    Firmware 0.3.5 is now available. It adds support for remapping the Power Key for ADB-to-USB mode, adds an option to disable ‘mouse wheel arrow keys’ behavior for USB-to-ADB mode, enables separate keycodes for left/right side modifier keys for Apple Extended Keyboard II, and hopefully resolves a user-reported problem with the Appledesign keyboard (unverified).

  131. Richard Moore April 8th, 2020 12:54 pm

    This firmware update looks good for me. I was able to stop the wheel scrolling the mouse, which helps with inadvertent presses.

    One very picky, small detail. I did the Control-Shift-Capslock-V command, while having the IIGS teach app open, to ensure the firmware update took, and it gave me

    ADB+uSB ombat firmware 0.3.5

    I guess there was a slight miscode with the lowercase u, and the W missing in the response?

    I would love one other change, but it may not be possible. I would love to reconfigure the apple eject key as a power key, but it appears to not be recognized by the wombat at all (no response in output mode, on both a wired apple keyboard, and the magic keyboard.) Is the eject key on an apple keyboard so nonstandard that it can’t be read by the wombat?

  132. Richard Moore April 8th, 2020 12:56 pm

    One more thing to close out a previous post, since putting a logitech universal receiver in the left usb socket of my apple wired keyboard, I have not had any of the weird skipping issues that I had when the same dongle was in the right usb keyboard socket. Very odd, it may be my particular keyboard, or maybe something with this particular model. Hopefully it does not reoccur, but so far so good.

  133. Steve April 8th, 2020 1:55 pm

    The missing Shift-U and ‘W’ keys you’re seeing in the firmware version string are likely due to slow keyboard polling speed of the IIGS when running GS/OS. It can’t keep up with the super-human typing speed of the phantom typist that writes out that text. Try it in built-in BASIC (not with GS/OS) and you’ll see the response is much faster.

    USB key translation is provided for USB HID group 7 (standard keyboard) as shown here: The Wombat isn’t designed for USB consumer media controls, game controllers, or other similar input, sorry.

  134. Richard Moore April 8th, 2020 2:36 pm

    You are correct, I went to the basic prompt (instead of Teach on my unaccelerated IIGS) and it displayed fine.

    I didn’t know that the eject key was non-standard for USB devices, I guess I am so use to apple products by now I just assumed it was a standard and not a media control.

    I previously configured the f12 key as the reset/power key, so it works well enough for the open apple-control-reset command.

  135. Chris Willis April 27th, 2020 5:03 am

    Being the silly person I am; I got so excited to order the Wombat and Floppy Emu that I forgot to order an ADB cable. When I came back to order the ADB cable I notice a Wombat case that is out of stock. Will there be supplies in the near future? I prefer to order the cable and wombat case together if that will be an option. Thanks

  136. Steve April 27th, 2020 6:26 am

    I’ll hopefully have more soon, but I don’t know exactly when. The supplier that I use is prioritizing medical orders for Covid-19 equipment and hasn’t processed my order yet.

  137. Chris Willis April 27th, 2020 12:15 pm

    That is fine by me. That’s a legitimate priority. I will keep an eye on the site and place an order for both when available. Thank you for the response.

  138. Hauke May 15th, 2020 8:27 am

    Putting my freshly-delivered Wombat to use, I plugged it between the KeyboardIO M01 and my Quadra 650. The M01’s LEDs came on, but – no input on the Mac.

    Reading through the keyboardio threads, I came across the distinction between USB’s Boot Protocol and Report Protocol. The story appears to be that a keyboard or mouse will start up talking (full-featured) Report Protocol, and will on demand switch back to the simpler Boot Protocol. The M01 lets you switch modes with “left fn + left shift + esc”, and once I did that, my Quadra read my typing just fine (modulo a few layout differences, which I will probably handle with a custom keyboard map on the Mac).

    My question: Does the Wombat firmware attempt to switch USB HID devices to Boot Protocol (which it appears to require)? Could it grow the ability?

  139. Steve May 15th, 2020 8:57 am

    Sorry to hear you’re having some trouble. It looks like the KeyboardIO M01 is a DIY keyboard with customizable firmware? There are several discussion threads on the web about problems with that keyboard not working with the BIOS on a variety of computers:

    I think the KeyboardIO handles this somewhat differently from most other keyboards. It appears this issue may have been fixed in a later KeyboardIO firmware version, or you can compile your own firmware that defaults the keyboard to boot protocol. Or use the key combination to manually switch modes, as you’re doing now.

    The Wombat’s low-level USB communications are part of the software library provided by Microchip for the PIC32 – I didn’t write them, so it’s difficult to determine exactly what they’re doing and more difficult to change them. It does support the report protocol (it reads report descriptors, rather than assuming a hard-coded report format). But it’s possible that its keyboard report descriptor parsing is buggy or limited in some way related to N-key rollover. That might explain the behavior you’re seeing. A nice overview can be found at

    In theory this could be addressed with a Wombat firmware change, since it’s all at the software level. But without more knowledge of the Microchip USB code and access to a KeyboardIO M01 for testing, it would be very difficult.

  140. Chris Willis May 20th, 2020 1:11 pm

    I just received my Wombat case in the mail today. The case is actually smaller than my wombat and the screw holes do not line-up. Has anyone else had this issue? Did the Wombat itself recently get a new smaller design? I have only had mine for a few weeks.

  141. Steve May 20th, 2020 1:21 pm

    Some wrongly-cut cases got out recently, sorry. Please send me an email to arrange a replacement or refund.

  142. Chris Willis May 20th, 2020 2:50 pm

    That’s too bad. Has to be pretty annoying to you. I just sent you an email. A replacement would be great. Appreciated.

  143. Rob Blessin May 23rd, 2020 10:06 am

    Hello Steve: A customer had a question for me, I perused through the previous enquiries above and did not see this specifically. Apologies in advance if I missed it and perhaps there is a way to set this in firware…appreciate your time. Best regards Rob Blessin Question below…

    Is there a way to keep the caps lock state and keyboard light in sync with the caps lock key?

    Apple Extended Keyboard M0115 to Wombat 0.3.5 to iMac 10.15 via USB-B

    The light reflects the state but the key position is inverted. Unplugging etc can get it right but it gets out of sync.

  144. Steve May 23rd, 2020 2:20 pm

    Yeah, the Wombat can get confused if your keyboard has a locking caps lock key, and you boot the system with caps lock already on. I don’t have a great solution for that, but as an alternative to unplugging the keyboard you could use one of the help commands like Control-Shift-Capslock-V. This has the side-effect of changing the caps lock state.

  145. Hauke May 24th, 2020 1:01 am

    Don\’t sweat it…

    I have in the meantime udated the M01 to the latest firmware, no difference.

    On the other hand, I found that my layout problems were based on a misunderstanding – the 3rd level characters printed on some keys are accessible with Fn, not opt/alt gr. So, after switching to US layout, the mapping works perfectly as-is.

    Which leaves manually switching the M01 into boot mode (left Fn – shift – esc) when I start using it with the Wombat, which I can manage. 😉

    Amazing little box that bridges thirty years of technological change!

  146. toasterking June 12th, 2020 4:04 pm

    This could be a new FAQ item:
    Q: What should I do if the PWR LED lights dimly and the Wombat does not respond when connected to my computer via ADB?
    A: Check that jumper block is set to USB. Check the ADB input voltage. Check PSU voltages. Check motherboard power capacitors.

    With the input jumper block set to USB, I connected my Wombat to a PowerBook 190 and powered up. The PWR LED lit dimly, A and B LEDs stayed off, and the Mac didn’t recognize the USB mouse I was using. I wish I had checked Vcc at the Wombat then, but I didn’t. I tried setting the jumper to USB+PWR and connecting a USB charger and it worked fine, for a while. Some days later, the PB190 failed to power on. It was then that I realized the SMD electrolytics were leaking barely visible electrolyte fluid onto the board. After a swap to a motherboard without that problem, the Wombat worked perfectly off ADB without the USB charger. I’ve ordered parts to recap both boards. I’m kind of amazed the old one was working at all. While not technically a Wombat problem, with Macs of this vintage, I’m sure I’m not the only one who will have this issue.

    The Wombat is amazing! I tried it the other way around with an Apple Extended Keyboard (ADB) on a USB KVM switch. Buggy nightmare on both Windows and Mac prior to the firmware update, but an absolute dream after.

    I freed up some space in the PB190 by swapping the hard drive for an SSD, so I plan to remove some connectors from the Wombat (to save space) and install it plus a USB RF transceiver for my wireless optical mouse permanently inside the PB190.

  147. Matt August 15th, 2020 5:31 pm

    I just bought this and it seems to work well with my PowerBook 5300 on system 7.6.1 and 8.1, except if I try and cycle between programs too quickly (I.e. between Netscape Navigator>Stuffit Expander>Finder] the mouse often slows down to a crawl; only remedied by restarting the 5300. I did check firmware and I’m a few revs behind (0.3.2 or 0.3.3 I think). If I update to 0.3.5 will it fix this issue? I’m also using a USB 3.0 hub, though I’ve tried a 90s USB 1.1 hub and had the same problem. Logitech mouse is M705 v1 and keyboard is a backlit Drevo Calibur. I wonder could the backlight on the KB be problematic? I’ve not yet tried powering the Wombat from the wall, maybe that might help?

  148. Steve August 16th, 2020 7:39 am

    Matt, this sounds like a possible hardware problem. Send me a direct mail (see Contact at the page’s upper-right) and I can help you troubleshoot.

  149. Greg Vander Rhodes August 30th, 2020 7:22 am

    I excitedly bought a Wombat in the hope that I could finally make full use of my Apple Adjustable Keyboard ( I’ve used a Griffin iMate in the past, but was always bummed out that I couldn’t use the special volume keys, and thought it would be fun to be able to make the microphone key to Siri.

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like the Wombat sees any of these special keys. Is there something special about them? Anyone else know anything about it? Could it, perhaps, be fixed with a Firmware update? (I’m not 100% sure what firmware I’m running, since the Caps lock key on the Apple Adjustable Keyboard doesn’t seem to be recognized either, but I just bought it my Wombat a week ago).


  150. Greg Vander Rhodes August 30th, 2020 8:02 am

    A bit more information– I did get it to get into key dump mode, and the volume up / volume down / microphone / mute keys are absolutely not picked up at all.

    Was this some sort of weird alternate ADB mode that was only ever used for the Apple Adjustable Keyboard?

  151. Steve August 30th, 2020 8:04 am

    Hi Greg, you can see the list of Wombat-mappable keys in its Keymap tool here: Key translation is provided for USB HID group 7 (standard keyboard) as defined here: The media keys are a separate category of USB HID input, rather than simply being additional keys on a standard keyboard. The Wombat isn’t designed for USB consumer media controls, game controllers, or other similar input, sorry.

    Is it possible there’s a problem with your keyboard’s caps-lock? I’ve heard from other people with the Apple Adjustable Keyboard who did not mention any issue with caps-lock. If there’s a hardware problem, please use the Contact link at upper-right to send me the details, and we’ll sort it out.

  152. Mouse 6502 Kelly September 11th, 2020 11:32 am

    Hello, I wanted to first thank you for your product. I’ve been using Wombat with my ADB keyboard (the original, the one that came with the Apple IIgs) with my Macbook for a year or two now and it has been fantastic.

    I do want to drop a tip off to everyone here – the Caps Lock is a toggle key but it only activates when you depress it to the on position (it does not send a keycode when it is untoggled. HOWEVER! if capslock is off, and you accidentally lightly brush it with your finger, sometimes it sends the capslock on, meanwhile you haven’t actually clicked it.

    So you can turn caps lock off by simply brushing your finger against it a second time. It’s hokey but it works, (until I decide to permanently desolder that pesky critter!) 😀

    Now is my question.. This keyboard is phenomenal for me but there is an obvious lack of function keys. I was able to use the Macbook’s function keys when necessary since they happened to be right there, but I am moving this setup to a Windows environment where they use function keys more often. I see in a comment above a request to use the power key as a “Fn” or additional modifier key. I was wondering if there was any movement on that or if it was possible at all.

    For example, Power-1 could be F1, Power-2 could be F2, .. up to F12 if you count the – and = keys on the top number row. Power-Numpad-+ and Power-Numpad– and Power-Numpad-* could be volume up/down/mute, and there’s other mappings like brightness, lock, search, printscreen, scrolllock, play/pause/forward/backward, etc etc, all those fun keys, that could be mapped to user specification.. So Option-Power-4 would for example be my Alt-F4 to close the window.

    Please let me know if this is possible. Thanks again!

  153. Steve September 11th, 2020 2:23 pm

    Caps lock is deceptively complicated. Some keyboards have a locking mechanical key – they send a keydown event when pressed and locked, and send a keyup event when pressed a second time and released. Other keyboards have a caps lock that behaves like any other key, sending keydown and keyup events every time it’s pressed, and letting the OS handle the caps toggling behavior. The Wombat tries to gracefully handle both types.

    Support for mapping the ADB power key was added in firmware 0.3.5. If you want it to behave like a special modifier key, then you could use key mapping software on your computer to configure the desired behaviors for each key combo.

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