I’m still working out a few minor bugs on my Apple MacBook running Ubuntu 7.04 “Feisty” before I write-up my end-all tutorial for Ubuntu on the MacBook. While perusing the Ubuntu Forums this morning I found a nice little hack / script / tool that can help you disable your touchpad while typing. I’m sure many of you have run into the problem of having your touchpad move your cursor while you’re typing and really screw things up. I know it has been a minor annoyance of mine for a while, but this fix seems to do the trick.
note: I have only tested this on my MacBook but I don’t see why it won’t work on any type hardware meeting the minimal requirements.
- You’ll need to have your touchpad enabled
- You’ll need to have “SHMConfig” “on” set in your xorg.conf
If you meet these requirements (pretty simple requirements, I know… and, yes, you should be able to simply add the SHMConfig line if you need to) you’re just about there.
The tool we’re going to use for this is called syndaemon. You may want to “man syndaemon” for more details, but my basic command below should do the trick.
syndaemon -d -t -i 2
- the -d flag tells syndaemon to run all the time and monitor the keyboard
- the -t flag tells it to only disable tapping and scrolling, not pointer movement
- the -i flag is how long (in seconds) to disable the touchpad *after* the last keypress
Basically, if you didn’t follow all of that here is what this does. It launches syndaemon as a daemon to continually monitor input activity. It only disables the tapping and scrolling, but not motion activity (ie; you can still move your mouse but you can’t click or scroll text). Lastly it unlocks that input after only 2 seconds. Update the “2” to your own preferences if you like.
You could try adding that command to your gnome sessions (System > Preferences > Sessions) to have it load at gnome login, or create a boot time script. I wont go over the boot time script setup here however.
I’d be very interested to know how well that works on other hardware. I don’t see why it wouldn’t but, again, I have only yet tested it on my MacBook and it works just fine. Enjoy.