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Thread: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005

    Question How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    I'm trying to make palm detection work for the touchpad of my Galago UltraPro - since I have to pound away at the keyboard (see my other posts) I seem especially prone to moving the mouse around with my palms between typing.

    I've already set the standard Ubuntu "Disable while typing" for the touchpad. But once I stop typing it is still easy to move the mouse around with a stray palm press.

    So far I've been playing with the Synaptics 'synclient' command line tool - I know this has some effect, I can enable and disable the touchpad completely. Changing the three palm related settings doesn't seem to have any effect though. My palms always work brilliantly just like a big finger... Here is a typical invocation:

    synclient PalmMinWidth=10 PalmMinZ=10 PalmDetect=1

    docs for these settings from 'man synaptics' indicate PalmDetect is a boolean, PalmMinZ and PalmMinWidth should be 16 bit values. I've tried making both really small, really big, big and small, small and big, and various other combinations. No joy.

    On the chance that one of my other settings is conflicting with palm detection here is my complete lists of settings as reported by synclient:

    Parameter settings:
        LeftEdge                = 1766
        RightEdge               = 5386
        TopEdge                 = 1640
        BottomEdge              = 4496
        FingerLow               = 25
        FingerHigh              = 30
        MaxTapTime              = 180
        MaxTapMove              = 235
        MaxDoubleTapTime        = 180
        SingleTapTimeout        = 180
        ClickTime               = 100
        EmulateMidButtonTime    = 0
        EmulateTwoFingerMinZ    = 282
        EmulateTwoFingerMinW    = 7
        VertScrollDelta         = -107
        HorizScrollDelta        = -107
        VertEdgeScroll          = 0
        HorizEdgeScroll         = 0
        CornerCoasting          = 0
        VertTwoFingerScroll     = 1
        HorizTwoFingerScroll    = 1
        MinSpeed                = 1
        MaxSpeed                = 1.75
        AccelFactor             = 0.0373134
        TouchpadOff             = 1
        LockedDrags             = 0
        LockedDragTimeout       = 5000
        RTCornerButton          = 2
        RBCornerButton          = 3
        LTCornerButton          = 0
        LBCornerButton          = 0
        TapButton1              = 1
        TapButton2              = 3
        TapButton3              = 0
        ClickFinger1            = 1
        ClickFinger2            = 3
        ClickFinger3            = 0
        CircularScrolling       = 0
        CircScrollDelta         = 0.1
        CircScrollTrigger       = 0
        PalmDetect              = 1
        PalmMinWidth            = 10
        PalmMinZ                = 200
        CoastingSpeed           = 20
        CoastingFriction        = 50
        PressureMotionMinZ      = 30
        PressureMotionMaxZ      = 160
        PressureMotionMinFactor = 1
        PressureMotionMaxFactor = 1
        ResolutionDetect        = 1
        GrabEventDevice         = 1
        TapAndDragGesture       = 1
        AreaLeftEdge            = 0
        AreaRightEdge           = 0
        AreaTopEdge             = 0
        AreaBottomEdge          = 0
        HorizHysteresis         = 8
        VertHysteresis          = 8
        ClickPad                = 1
        RightButtonAreaLeft     = 3576
        RightButtonAreaRight    = 0
        RightButtonAreaTop      = 4130
        RightButtonAreaBottom   = 0
        MiddleButtonAreaLeft    = 0
        MiddleButtonAreaRight   = 0
        MiddleButtonAreaTop     = 0
        MiddleButtonAreaBottom  = 0
    Any ideas?

    PS. I have just upgraded to 13.10 and reinstalled the System76 drivers - still no joy.

    PPS. Those parameters only have "TouchpadOff = 1" because I have disable while typing. If I add a sleep 2 before the dump it is 0 - further evidence that synclient is working properly.
    Last edited by moschops; October 18th, 2013 at 10:15 PM. Reason: additional info

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Aurora, CO

    Re: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    When you installed the System76 Driver, did you (afterwards) go to System Settings > System76 Driver and click on "Restore"?
    Ian Santopietro - System76 Technical Support.
    Open a Support Ticket!
    Ask a Sales Question!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005

    Re: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    No I did not click on Restore - that would restore the system to its state when it was delivered right? I don't want that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    Quote Originally Posted by moschops View Post
    No I did not click on Restore - that would restore the system to its state when it was delivered right? I don't want that.
    Restoring the System76 driver will not restore your system to factory default. Getting the System76 driver to work is a two step process. Step one is the installation, which you have done. Step two is restoring (or activating) the driver. I agree that the wording is a little confusing. Disclaimer: I do not work for System76, so my advice comes as an owner.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005

    Re: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    Thanks for the info - I agree the wording is confusing. Very confusing.

    I have since heard from System 76 that the do not support palm detection at the moment. That kind of sucks.

    This wouldn't be such a huge issue for me but since the keyboard on the Galago Pro bites so much I really have to pound on it and try to ensure every keystroke is hard and from directly above. That requires moving my hands around which brings my palms beneath the thumb in contact with the touch pad a lot. Without palm detection it often renders using the keyboard at best "really frustrating" or at worst "I want to send this thing back it is driving me so crazy..."

    'nuff said.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2011

    Re: How to make Synaptics touchpad palm detection work?

    I can't get my palm detection to work either, although according to xinput, it should be able to. I talk about it on this thread (which I admittedly may have hijacked a little)

    Quick palm detection work around--change the value of your AreaRightEdge variable in synaptics (if that is the driver running your touchpad) to be a little less then the Right Edge-- my Right Edge was 5382, so setting my AreaRightEdge to 5300 made it so that the very right most part of my clickpad (about a finger's width worth) is deactivate in terms of actuallymoving the pointer. If i click there though, it's still a right click, which is nice.

    By default, your AreaRightEdge is probably 0, which means it extends to infinity in that direction (uses the entire area of the clickpad). My clickpad is super big though, so I don't really mind the one finger width's reduction in width, and it solves my problem!
    Last edited by el_garicimo; May 10th, 2014 at 02:01 PM.

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