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The Mac Magic Mouse with multi-touch is fantastic for many users, letting you swipe and scroll through documents just by touching, but some people will find they accidentally trigger touch gestures or other scrolling behavior they don’t want. This happens more often than you might think, especially for people who came to the Mac from a platform without multitouch. So some users may want a Magic Mouse to act like a generic mouse, without any multitouch scrolling behavior, instead just moving the cursor on the screen without activating multitouch responsive gestures.
While you can toggle some Magic Mouse settings and gestures on and off in the “Mouse” system preferences, if you want to go ahead and disable multitouch, go to the Mac OS command line. Terminal allows you to disable multi-touch on the Magic Mouse, this stops scrolling with momentum, stops all horizontal scrolling and also stops all vertical scrolling. Yes, that means you can scroll in any direction with two fingers.
This one tutorial will show you who should disable multitouch on Magic Mouse, as well how to Re-enable multitouch on a Magic Mouse if you change your mind and want scrolling capabilities back.
How to Disable Multitouch on a Mac Magic Mouse
Note that this will prevent all multitouch scrolling capabilities on the Magic Mouse from working and activating at all, either intentionally or unintentionally. Only use these commands if you don’t want scrolling or multitouch capabilities on the Magic Mouse at all.
- Open the terminal and enter the following commands in the terminal:
- Hit return to run the commands, each command must be run individually for the changes to take effect
- When you’re done running all six commands, reboot the Mac by going to the Apple menu and choosing ‘Restart’
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseMomentumScroll -bool NO;
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseHorizontalScroll -bool NO;
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseVerticalScroll -bool NO;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseMomentumScroll -bool NO;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseHorizontalScroll -bool NO;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseVerticalScroll -bool NO;
When the Mac starts up again up, the Magic Mouse’s multitouch scrolling capabilities are disabled and instead the mouse behaves more like a normal mouse without any multitouch.
Note that there are other multitouch and Magic Mouse options available to customize in the het Apple menu> System Preferences> Mouse Control Panel, and if you’re using a trackpad, you can find similar options in the Trackpad System Preferences pane as well. This includes the ability to make adjustments to things like tap to click, a literal right-click, the many multi-touch gestures, three-finger drag and a lot more. While the Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad (en laptop trackpad) are different devices, many share the same gestures and features.
If you’re having trouble getting the copy and paste commands to work, run each of them individually, put them one by one on their own command line, hit return, and then enter the following command.
How to Re-enable Multitouch on Magic Mouse for Mac
Return to the Terminal app (found in / Applications / Utilities /) and enter the following commands, you will notice that the only difference in command is that the “NO” boolean in the default string has been changed to YES:
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseMomentumScroll -bool YES;
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseHorizontalScroll -bool YES;
defaults write com.apple.AppleMultitouchMouse MouseVerticalScroll -bool YES;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseMomentumScroll -bool YES;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseHorizontalScroll -bool YES;
defaults write com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouchMouse MouseVerticalScroll -bool YES;
Run each command again and reboot the Mac to regain multitouch capabilities.
Apart from that, if you happen to have turned on or off other settings for Magic Mouse in the mouse preferences panel, don’t forget to go back to the Apple menu> System Preferences> Mouse section of your settings and adjust them again too.
Another option is to use a third-party app like BetterTouchTool or MagicPrefs, which allows you to disable and enable specific gestures and Magic Mouse capabilities from a small control panel like a Mac app.
Have another tips or insights for customizing multitouch or a Magic Mouse to work better for you? Share it with us in the comments below!
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