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VT100 Top.JPG
Manufacturer DEC/Hi-Tek
Layouts DEC VT-100
Keyswitches Hi-Tek High Profile
Interface VT100
Years of production 1978–1983

The DEC VT100 keyboard was made by Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) for the DEC VT-100 terminal, the ancestor of all modern terminals and terminal emulators.[1] It is very closely related to the keyboard from the original Kaypro 100 (although the VT100 came first). When connected to the VT100 terminal, it had four status lights that could be turned on or off by sending the appropriate escape sequences from the attached computer. The caps lock key is a physically locking type.

It connects to the terminal using an unusual audio jack style connector (1/4" TRS plug, also known as a phone plug).

Notable keys

The SET-UP key was was used to enter SET-UP mode, a menu system in which keys were used to modify settings on the terminal itself, not the host it was connected to.

The NO SCROLL key paused screen output until pressed again, thus acting like the Scroll lock key on PC keyboards. [2]


Black slider version

The ICs are dated 1979, and the switch frame is dated 8047.[3]

White slider version

Unusual white sliders with notches. The dates on the ICs are not readable.


  1. Wikipedia — VT100
  2. VT100 User Guide. Digital Equipment Corporation. August 1979. Retrieved from [] on 2018-05-07
  3. Deskthority — DEC vt100 'cyber' keyboard