As soon as I include keyboard.h my pro micros LED starts flashing (as far as I know this indicates a serial connection is stablished or so.)

But it's really annoying having a flashing led on my desk all the time.

Is there an option to disable this 'debugging' behaviour from the keyboard.h libary?

2 Answers 2


Those LEDs are controlled by the USB Core code, and are defined in the board variant. For the pro micro that's the pins_arduino.h file in the micro variant:

#define TXLED0          PORTD &= ~(1<<5)
#define TXLED1          PORTD |= (1<<5)
#define RXLED0          PORTB &= ~(1<<0)
#define RXLED1          PORTB |= (1<<0)
#define TX_RX_LED_INIT  DDRD |= (1<<5), DDRB |= (1<<0), TXLED0, RXLED0

If you edit that file and remove everything after the macro name, so you have 5 empty macros, it should disable the LEDs completely.

#define TXLED0
#define TXLED1
#define RXLED0
#define RXLED1
#define TX_RX_LED_INIT

For the Sparkfun Pro Micro, edit the file at


This is because it has an extra package that is not installed by default.

  • Didn't work for me. I even deleted them completly, but no error nothing. Maybe I am in the wrong directory or do I need to recompile something? Do I need to change it at some different place since the pro micro needs extra libaries to function anyways? The full path I used : C:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\hardware\arduino\avr\variants\micro\pins_arduino.h Dec 22, 2021 at 20:50
  • If you had to install more boards packages (I have not used that board) then the file will be in that package somewhere.
    – Majenko
    Dec 22, 2021 at 23:26
  • Works now :D. If anybody is interested: The file you need to edit is at ...\AppData\Local\Arduino15\packages\SparkFun\hardware\avr\1.1.13\variants\promicro It's a bunch of stuff in the file. You need to look for a second to find the keywords but they are there. Dec 23, 2021 at 12:22

it's really annoying having a flashing led on my desk all the time.

As a software engineer I know we often fall into the trap of thinking that all problems must have a software solution. Try thinking of this as a hardware problem.

  • Cut out a small piece of a sticky label and stick it over that annoying LED.
  • Use a soldering iron to remove the offending LED.
  • Use needle-nosed pliers to crush the offending LED.

The more destructive solutions can be reversed with a soldering iron and maybe a new SMD LED. For Arduinos with female or stacking headers you could instead reinstate the feature by plugging a thru-hole LED and resistor into the appropriate positions in the Arduino's header sockets. E.g. D13 and GND. For other Arduinos by adding LED and resistor in adjacent positions in a breadboard.

There might be a good software solution but it can be worth considering other approaches.

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