Precision / XPS: Ubuntu General Touchpad / Mouse Issue Fix

Precision / XPS: Ubuntu General Touchpad / Mouse Issue Fix



Troubleshooting Ubuntu Mouse Issues

The following fix is a best practice for troubleshooting the touchpad / mouse configuration in Ubuntu. This is a modification to your Ubuntu Operating System (OS) that has had great success in resolving issues such as erratic or jumping cursor. This should improve your overall experience of the feel of the touchpad / mouse.

  1. Start by verifying that the system is fully updated:

    1. Open a Terminal window (Press the CTRL/ALT and T keys together)

    2. Run the following commands followed by hitting the Enter key after each one:

      sudo apt-get update
      sudo apt-get upgrade -y
Note: sudo is a command in Ubuntu that will give administrator rights to the command that follows it. You will need to have administrator level access to the system for these commands to work. If you intend to make a number of Terminal commands, you may want to use the sudo su command to give the whole terminal session administrator level rights.
  1. Restart the PC for changes to take effect

  2. Enable the HWE kernel:

    1. Open a Terminal window

    2. Run the following command followed by hitting the Enter key:

      sudo apt-get install --install-recommends linux-generic-hwe-16.04 xserver-xorg-hwe-16.04
Note: For more info on what this kernel does, you can visit the following article
  1. Restart the PC for changes to take effect

  2. Verify if your system has the dual mouse drivers (Not all models have this issue. If your system does not have the double mouse driver, proceed to the next step):

    1. Open a Terminal window

    2. Run the following command, then hit the Enter key to verifiy if Ubuntu detects 2 touch pads:

      xinput list

      Ubuntu detects 2 touch pads

      Figure 1

      Note: Your Id number will be different as each system pulls and assigns the ids differently.
    3. Edit the 51-synaptics-quirks.conf file by running the following command and pressing Enter:

      sudo gedit /usr/share/x11/xorg.conf.d/*synaptics-quirks.conf

      Add the following text to the bottom of the file:

      • # Disable generic Synaptics device, as we're using
        # "DLL0704:01 06CB:76AE Touchpad"

        # Having multiple touchpad devices running confuses syndaemon
        Section "InputClass"
        Identifier "SynPS/2 Synaptics TouchPad"
        MatchProduct "SynPS/2 Synaptics TouchPad"
        MatchIsTouchpad "on"
        MatchOS "Linux"
        MatchDevicePath "/dev/input/event*"
        Option "Ignore" "on"
        EndSection

      Add the following text to the bottom of the file

      Figure 2

      Once completed, click on the save button on the upper right and then exit out the window and reboot your PC

    4. Open a Terminal window

    5. Verify that the 2nd mouse is disabled using the following command followed by hitting the Enter key:

      xinput -list

      Verify that the 2nd mouse is disabled

      Figure 3

      The Synaptics touch pad should not appear, if you still have the extra touchpad, retry the last series of steps before proceeding

  3. Install the new libinput driver:

    1. Open a Terminal window

    2. Run the following command followed by hitting the Enter key:

      sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-input-libinput-hwe-16.04 libinput-tools xorg-input-abi-24
    3. Reboot your PC

  4. Blacklist the synaptics driver:

    1. we need to edit the synatptics.conf file to blacklist the old driver. Depending on your model, the number at the front may be different

    2. Open a Terminal window

    3. Run the following command followed by hitting the Enter key:

      sudo gedit /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/*synaptics.conf
    4. We need to comment out the Touchpad catchall section, by adding the pound sign (#) at the beginning of every line in the section

      Touchpad catchall

      Figure 4

    5. Once completed, click on the save button on the upper right corner and exit out of the window

  5. Add in options to the libinput configuration file:

    1. The last step is to add in the extra options to the libinput configuration file. This will enable some extra features and improve the overall feel of the touch pad

    2. Open a Terminal window

    3. Run the following command to edit the file followed by hitting the Enter key:

      sudo gedit /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/*libinput.conf
    4. Now find the section that has the wording - Identifier "libinput touchpad catchall" and type in the following changes between the lines MatchDevicePath "/dev/input/event*" and Driver "libinput":

      • Option "Tapping" "True"
        Option "TappingDrag" "True"
        Option "DisableWhileTyping" "True"
        Option "AccelProfile" "adaptive"
        Option "AccelSpeed" "0.4"
        Option "SendEventsMode" "disabled-on-external-mouse"

      "libinput touchpad catchall"

      Figure 5

      Once completed, click on the save button on the upper right and then exit out the window.

  6. Reboot the PC and test the issues have been resolved


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Additional information

Useful terminal commands to know:

xinput -list-devices
This will give you the hardware id of the touchpad. Each system will display a different number. For example my system is ID 11 but yours might be different.
xinput list-props 11
Will show you all the options that are enabled and disabled. This will also verify that libinput is working. the 11 at the end is the hardware ID that was obtained from the previous command.
sudo libinput-list-devices
This will show you all the devise recognized by libinput and show you the state of the options.

For all the libinput options please visit:

Here are the following options that are most common (These options are added to /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/*libinput.conf):

Option "SendEventsMode" "disabled-on-external-mouse"
When a USB mouse is detected it will disable the touch pad.
Option "Tapping" "True"
This allows you to just use your finger and tap the mouse to click. If you leave this option out it will cause you to have to physically click the touch pad to activate a mouse click or use the lower buttons. Once enabled, it allows 2 finger tap to activate a right click.
Option "DisableWhileTyping" "True"
Enabled by default but if you like here is the setting.
Option "AccelProfile" "adaptive"
Enables the mouse acceleration profile. This will help make the speed of your mouse finger to be a bit more natural and less sluggish feeling. Adaptive is recommend as it changes vs your input. You may also try the "flat" option.
Option "AccelSpeed" "0.3"
Changes the acceleration speed of the pointer. Use values -1 to 1. The higher the number the faster the pointer will go. Most people like 0.2 for slower response and 0.5 for a faster response feel.
Option "TappingDrag" "True"
When enabled, a tap followed by a finger held down causes a single button down only, all motions of that finger thus translate into dragging motion.
Option "HorizontalScrolling" "True"
If you want to be able to scroll side to side. Personally I do not like this one. If you have a touch screen you can use the option on the touch screen. It feels more natural on the touch screen vs the touch pad.
Option "ScrollMethod" "edge"
By default the touch pad scrolls using 2 fingers. If you like the older mouse style that had the scroll area to the right of the touch pad you may use this option to enable it.


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Article ID: SLN308258

Last Date Modified: 03/20/2019 11:38 AM


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