Posted on 15:22 by Nicolas and filed under , , , , , ,
I've been asked recently my prefered settings for the pointing devices on Thinkpads... I'm addicted to the Trackpoint (the little red strawberry encrusted between the G, H and B keys) and the Trackpad (the flat sensitive surface also referred to as touchpad) generally disrupts me as I tend to accidentally touch it with the palm of my hand, so I generally disable it from the BIOS.
Also, I find the middle button quite practical for scrolling. This can be configured via the xorg mouse input driver. Unfortunately, this is no longer possible with recent Linux distros (typically Fedora starting from version 9 or also Ubuntu from 8.10), the evdev driver is taking precedence, even though another driver is explicitly configured in xorg.conf (explanations from Red Hat developers can be found in this bug opened against Fedora 9). The correct solution is to disable this auto-detection by turning the "AutoAddDevices" server flag to "false".

Here are the relevant sections in my /etc/X11/xorg.conf:

Section "ServerFlags"
Option "AutoAddDevices" "false"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Trackpoint"
Driver "mouse"
Option "CorePointer"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
Option "Protocol" "ExplorerPS/2"
Option "Emulate3Buttons" "off"
Option "EmulateWheel" "on"
Option "EmulateWheelTimeOut" "200"
Option "EmulateWheelButton" "2"
Option "YAxisMapping" "4 5"
# Option "XAxisMapping" "6 7"
Option "ZAxisMapping" "4 5"

Please note from the above that the middle button is only enabled for vertical scrolling. I'm barely using horizontal scrolling and it gets interpreted in Firefox as backwards/forwards which can get quickly annoying : ) Hence its being commented.

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