Disable Your Notebook Touchpad The Easy Way

Boy, this sure looks nice, eh? Simple, GUI goodness that you might think will work just fine. And for most of you, it might, so long as you can meet these requirements.

  • synaptics driver version x.y.z (where x.y.z is above 0.14.4) and the
  • libsynaptics version X.Y.Z (where X.Y.Z is above or equals x.y.z) installed.

Oh, then you need to make sure you have some time to edit your Xorg.conf, making sure that you have Option “ShmConfig” “true” enabled in the synaptics touchpad section of the file. And of course, you know that the synaptics driver needs to be setup to startup in the modules section, right?

Another approach is:

syndaemon [-i idle-time] [-d]


-i <idle-time>
How many seconds to wait after the last key press before
enabling the touchpad. (default is 2s).

-d Start as a daemon, ie in the background.

-t Only disable tapping, not mouse movements, in response to key-
board activity.

Or if you prefer:

sudo tpconfig -s –sleep=1

And this is super easy, until you get this response:

Found Synaptics Touchpad.
Firmware: 8.96 (multiple-byte mode).
Sleep mode not supported on this TouchPad.
Sleep mode not supported on this TouchPad.

STOP! So basically there is no easy way to do this, right? Wrong.

Create a text file. Paste the following:

#! /bin/sh -f

gksudo -S rmmod psmouse

Save it as disable-tp.sh then right click on it and go to properties, select permissions and check off allow to be executed. Now do the exact same thing with this:

#! /bin/sh -f

gksudo -S modprobe psmouse

…and name it enable-tp.sh .

Tired of using the touchpad and buttons on your notebook? Double click disable-tp.sh and choose “run”. Need that functionality back, “run” enable-tp.sh the same way. This allows you to use a USB mouse, even plugged in while executing these commands, without stumbling over that pesky touchpad.

Of course, everything from the commands to the permissions can be done from the command line, but I thought I would appeal to the Windows users out there who are frustrated with this issue. 😉

[tags]Linux PC, system76[/tags]