Maybe it depends exactly what keyboard he is using.
On my Mac keyboard (UK English) the tilde ~ is on the key to the left of the letter 'Z'.
But you need to use 'Shift' with it to get the character to appear.
Ok, but how can you use it to transform the pattern only on a selected object? Or which key are you holding down to accomplish that?
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Works for me by using the tilde key on the pattern itself.
Is your friend using the "Transform" menu at the top of the screen?
Object > Transform > Scale > ....has he then ticked "Patterns" and not "Objects"
Got the same prob did you find out how to do this on a uk keyboard???
My Icelandic Mac keyboard doesn’t have a tilde-key.
But I use the <-key (to the left of Z) to manually manipulate patterns.
Use it in conjunction with Scale and Rotate tools as well as just on its own for dragging patterns.
It should be over by the Enter key, with the #.
Ultimately, the general way of finding out how to get it to work on whichever keyboard you have is to try all keys with/without shift (and AltGr), and remember or write it down.
With so many languages/countries and Win/Mac there are so many (im)possibilities, and no one has ever made any list of just a few.
I remember that the German keyboards use the < like the Icelandic, as Monika should be able to confirm.
You are right it is the # next to the enter but the problem is that you have to use the shift key with it and illustrator use the shift key to do other things and i cant find anywhere in the setting to change the ~ to a diffent key in illustrator.
But does it work (or how about the key to the left of Z)?
Someone else will have to help you with the reassignment of keys.
In CS6, it's the apostrophe key, below the @ symbol ( ' )