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I recently bought the 13" MacBook Pro and using the function keys set the keyboard backlighting to be four steps below the maximum setting, as indicated by the graphic that appears on the screen. Often when I boot the computer or open the lid after a sleep period, if I adjust the backlighting by one step then I notice that it has a noticeably different value to what I set it to. For example, it might have dropped from near the maximum value to the half way setting.

Is this normal behaviour of the Mac adjusting the backlighting level for the ambient lighting conditions? Or should the on screen graphic retain the same number of bars regardless of whether I'm outside in brilliant sunshine or in a darkened room?

Firstly check whether power saving is off or not.

Secondly increase the brightness of the keyboard to max

Third, if none it works, Grab a T6 screwdriver and flip your Mac.

Unscrew all the 10 screws on the back.

Gently remove the back panel.

Now use your screwdriver to remove the battery. It should have a maximum of 3 screws I believe.

Now gently lift the battery with the transparent flap and disconnect the battery gently. DO NOT DO THIS STEP IN A HURRY.

Now unscrew the motherboard and on the side near the CD ROM you will notice a plug which is disconnected. Connect it, it's for the keyboard light.

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It sounds like you're experiencing some unexpected behavior with your MacBook Pro.

I'd recommend resetting the System Management Controller (SMC) as a troubleshooting step that may help with these symptoms:

Resetting the SMC on portables with a battery you should not remove on your own

Note: Portable computers that have a battery you should not remove on your own include MacBook Pro (Early 2009) and later, all models of MacBook Air, and MacBook (Late 2009).

  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Plug in the MagSafe power adapter to a power source, connecting it to the Mac if its not already connected.
  3. On the built-in keyboard, press the (left side) Shift-Control-Option keys and the power button at the same time.
  4. Release all the keys and the power button at the same time.
  5. Press the power button to turn on the computer.

    Note: The LED on the MagSafe power adapter may change states or temporarily turn off when you reset the SMC.

This article has more information about resetting the SMC:

Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC)

Additionally, the steps in this article can help if the Wi-Fi connectivity issues persist:

Wi-Fi: How to troubleshoot Wi-Fi connectivity

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Yes, it actually is normal. If you are in a well lit room, then the backlighting will refuse to turn on.

So no, the onscreen graphic would not retain the same number of bars unless you stay in the same room or do not change into different lighting environments.

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