Configuring mouse behavior

Example of configuring your mouse

This section provides a comprehensive example that ties together some of the concepts and procedures discussed in this chapter.

Let's assume you are temporarily working on a system, using a departmental account that is accessed by several users. While most of these users are right-handed, you are left-handed. Let's also assume the system uses a 20-inch, high resolution display, but your colleagues have configured the mouse so it moves more slowly over the large screen than you would prefer.

You want to reconfigure the mouse for left-handed use and speed up the mouse cursor movement but you do not want to overwrite the mouse settings that satisfy the majority of users who access the departmental account.

This example covers how to make these changes for your current session only. The commands used affect only the current session, unlike using scomouse, which affects not only the current session but also all subsequent sessions.

NOTE: If you want to configure the behavior of your mouse on a more permanent basis, you should use the scomouse utility. See ``Changing mouse characteristics'' for more information on using scomouse.

The following steps result in a mouse that is temporarily configured for left-handed use and faster movement across the display.

  1. Log into the system. If logging in does not automatically start the X server, do so now by entering the following command at the prompt:

    startx &

  2. To configure the mouse for left-handed use, enter the following command from a scoterm window:

    xmodmap -e "pointer = 3 2 1"

  3. When the prompt returns, verify that the mouse buttons are now mapped for left-handed use by entering:

    xmodmap -pp

    You should see the following:

       There are 3 pointer buttons defined.

    Physical Button Button Code 1 3 2 2 3 1

    You can now use the mouse button on the right to perform all mouse button 1 actions.

  4. Now you are ready to increase the rate at which the mouse cursor moves across the screen. For this example, we'll assume you want the mouse cursor to move six times as fast as you move the mouse.

    Because you also want to precisely position the mouse cursor, you need to increase the rate of the mouse's threshold. For this example, we'll set the threshold so the cursor must move over 8 pixels on the screen before the mouse cursor actually accelerates.

    To make these settings, enter the following command from a scoterm window:

    xset m 6 8

  5. Verify that the X server successfully implemented these new mouse settings by entering:

    xset q

    You see a list of all the current xset preferences, including the current mouse movement parameter values:

       Pointer Control:
         acceleration:   6 / 1     threshold:  8
    The mouse is now configured to suit your preferences. When you end your session and log out, your temporary mouse configuration settings are removed.

Previous topic: Step 3: Restarting the window manager

© 2003 Caldera International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.7 -- 11 February 2003