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Thread: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    San Luis Obispo, CA
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    31
    Distro
    Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon

    HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    This Tutorial is outdated for Intrepid (8.10) and later: see https://help.ubuntu.com/community/SynapticsTouchpad

    Purpose: For many of us, our laptop touchpads get in the way of our typing quite often and can actually cause us to highlight or minimize things we didn't intend. So, this will help to alleviate that by making a small delay in the response of the touchpad after typing.

    NOTE: Please read this guide entirely before attempting to do it. There is a section where you must restart X and thus close down your internet browser. The best way to do this would be to print this guide! I hope this works as well for you as it has for me!

    Procedure:
    1. Turn on SHMCONFIG
    A. Open a Terminal. Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal

    B. Type sudo cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf_synbackup
    C. Type gksudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf Enter your password if it prompts you.

    Note: The second command in the picture is typed wrong. Please see C.

    D. Search for a section that looks like this:
    Section "InputDevice"
    Identifier "Synaptics Touchpad"
    ...
    End Section
    E. Add a line above the End Section line and put this into it:
    Option "SHMConfig" "on"

    F. Save the file and close gedit and the terminal window
    G. Write these commands down just in case this screws up your window system: sudo cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf_synbackup /etc/X11/xorg.conf and sudo killall gdm and sudo gdm
    H. This next step will restart your window system, so save any work and close any open applications. Press: Ctrl-Alt-Backspace. This should take you back to your login screen. If it does not, press Ctrl-Alt-F1 and login at the terminal window. After logging in, type the commands that you wrote down from step F in order hitting return after each command.
    I. If your login screen came up
    the first time, continue on to part 2, if not, look over waht you did carefully and see if you can spot any mistakes.

    2. Add the Startup Command

    A. Open the sessions manager: System -> Preferences -> Sessions
    B. Click the far right tab labeled Startup Programs
    C. Click the Add button
    D. Type in the following: syndaemon -i 1 -d

    E. Hit ok then hit close

    Congratualations, you are done! Note that this will not take effect until Gnome is restarted or you type the command from 2D in a terminal window. You can restart Gnome with the Ctrl-Alt-Backspace trick (make sure to save everything first!) or you can open a terminal by going to Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal.

    If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to contact me through this board, or more easily through email or AIM.

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    Last edited by ugm6hr; June 7th, 2009 at 07:55 AM. Reason: Outdated tip
    My HowTo Guides:
    Keep your touchpad from interrupting your typing: here.
    Nice, colored, text based boot and console: here.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    2

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Hi,

    According to your directions, I have to set up a daemon in my Sessions preferences, this however does not appear to exist in my version.

    Here are the applications I have under System -

    Adept, KCron, Keep, KinfoCenter, Konsole, kpowersave, KSysGuard, KSystemLog, and Language Support.

    If you could please tell me how else I might do step 2 of your instructions, I'd much appreciate it.

    Thanks,

    Ryan

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    13

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Thanks for this how to.

    The simplicity of this HowTo is marvelous, and informative. I can finally peacefully type text in Ubuntu on my notebook, without the touchpad getting a mind of its own, and clicking to the cursor!
    No more having to keep my hands held above the computer to type, LOL.


    I am on an HP Pavilion zv5430us notebook, AMD Athlon 64, Ubuntu 6.06 amd64-generic.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
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    Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Quote Originally Posted by funboy116 View Post
    Hi,

    According to your directions, I have to set up a daemon in my Sessions preferences, this however does not appear to exist in my version.

    Here are the applications I have under System -

    Adept, KCron, Keep, KinfoCenter, Konsole, kpowersave, KSysGuard, KSystemLog, and Language Support.

    If you could please tell me how else I might do step 2 of your instructions, I'd much appreciate it.

    Thanks,

    Ryan
    Ahh! I didn't think of Kubuntu. I'm not exactly sure how to add this to startup in KDE. I would start with KCron though. That is a program that executes commands based on a schedule.

    Since I can't help you directly, here is the goal of your work:
    You want this command to run as soon as you log on to KDE
    syndaemon -i 1 -d

    Perhaps someone else can tell us where to do that?


    Quote Originally Posted by doogleplex
    Thanks for this how to.

    The simplicity of this HowTo is marvelous, and informative. I can finally peacefully type text in Ubuntu on my notebook, without the touchpad getting a mind of its own, and clicking to the cursor!
    No more having to keep my hands held above the computer to type, LOL.


    I am on an HP Pavilion zv5430us notebook, AMD Athlon 64, Ubuntu 6.06 amd64-generic.
    I am very glad to hear that this howto was helpful! My goal was to make it as simple as possible and I really appreciate your encouraging comments!
    My HowTo Guides:
    Keep your touchpad from interrupting your typing: here.
    Nice, colored, text based boot and console: here.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    8

    Talking Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    brilliant! I've attempted many much more complex how-tos on this problem, but none was entirely successful. Each time I had to resort to disabling my touchpad in my xorg.conf when doing any extensive typing.

    thanks

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Hidden!
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    Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Hey!
    Thanks a lot for this how to, it worked great!
    For anyone who might be interested, the man page of syndaemon (in a terminal type: man syndaemon) has some more options you can use:
    Code:
    OPTIONS
           -i <idle-time>
                  How  many  seconds  to  wait  after  the  last  key press before
                  enabling the touchpad.  (default is 2.0s).
    
           -d     Start as a daemon, ie in the background.
    
           -p <pid-file>
                  Create a pid file with the specified filename.  A pid file  will
                  only be created if the program is started in daemon mode.
    
           -t     Only  disable  tapping  and  scrolling,  not mouse movements, in
                  response to keyboard activity.
    
           -k     Ignore modifier keys when monitoring keyboard activity.
    
           -K     Like -k but also ignore Modifier+Key combos.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    Winnipeg, Canada
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    Distro
    Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex (testing)

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Ahh! I didn't think of Kubuntu. I'm not exactly sure how to add this to startup in KDE. I would start with KCron though. That is a program that executes commands based on a schedule.

    Since I can't help you directly, here is the goal of your work:
    You want this command to run as soon as you log on to KDE
    syndaemon -i 1 -d

    Perhaps someone else can tell us where to do that?
    I'm not sure about how to do this - i just recently switched to kubuntu myself.

    however, i noticed that KDE has an autostart folder (/home/username/.kde/Autostart). I haven't tried this, but it should be theoretically possible to create a script in this folder. Paste "syndaemon -i 1 -d" into a new text document using kate. save it in the autostart folder, and name it "syndaemon". then make it executable, and restart. hopefully, if my theory is correct, it should run.


    disclaimer: i don't actually know how to write proper scripts - typing "syndaemon -i 1 -d" into a text doc and making it executable is probably not enough.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    6

    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    I'd like to disable my touchpad completely, as it is a sheer nuisance on an IBM ThinkPad. Judging from mms's post above, that might be achieved by editing xorg.conf, but how exactly? I tried setting "SendCoreEvents" under" "Synaptics Touchpad" to "false" and rebooting but that changed nothing.
    I'd appreciate any suggestions - this touchpad has been bugging me ever since I installed Ubuntu to my latest TP (there weren't any in my previous ones...)

  9. #9
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    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Excellent HOWTO, I've been looking for a way to do this. Works perfectly for me.

    For you Kubuntu users, follow the instructions of groggyboy above, but put
    Code:
    #!/bin/sh
    as the first line in the file, otherwise it won't work.

    Xubuntu users should look in Preferences -> Autostarted Applications
    "Whoever said sunshine brings happiness has never danced in the rain." - K. Jackson
    Exaile Media Player | Arch Linux
    Click here to have your brain eaten

  10. #10
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    Re: HowTo: Disable Synaptics Touchpad While Typing

    Quote Originally Posted by yxvaan View Post
    I'd like to disable my touchpad completely, as it is a sheer nuisance on an IBM ThinkPad. Judging from mms's post above, that might be achieved by editing xorg.conf, but how exactly? I tried setting "SendCoreEvents" under" "Synaptics Touchpad" to "false" and rebooting but that changed nothing.
    I'd appreciate any suggestions - this touchpad has been bugging me ever since I installed Ubuntu to my latest TP (there weren't any in my previous ones...)
    To disable the touchpad completely, open your xorg.conf, and comment out or remove the line that says
    Code:
    	InputDevice	"Synaptics Touchpad"
    in the "ServerLayout" section (it's near the bottom).
    Last edited by reacocard; January 4th, 2007 at 01:30 AM.
    "Whoever said sunshine brings happiness has never danced in the rain." - K. Jackson
    Exaile Media Player | Arch Linux
    Click here to have your brain eaten

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