I'm running Ubuntu 12.04 LTS on a MacBook Pro 5.5. I'm just wondering if there is something that takes all the kinks out of the touch-pad. It works good, but it feels sluggish, double tap works about 75% of the time and sometimes while I it somehow selects something on a different page (although I'm not sure if that has to deal with the touch-pad and not weird laptop bugs for a new LTS)

If there are any programs, apps, commands aside from the built in system preferences > mouse and track-pad > touch-pad menu that allow someone to "optimize" touch-pad potential.

  • i don't know when- but it looks like the xorg.conf is splt into several files in a .d directory... to address this using, Chan-Ho Suh's fix; try adding the items to the bottom of **/usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/****10-evdev.conf
    – knope
    Feb 23, 2014 at 12:46

5 Answers 5


You can modify the relevant section of the file /etc/X11/xorg.conf. If the file doesn't exist, create one. An example file to show you the proper format is this:

Section "InputClass"
    Identifier         "Touchpad"
    Driver             "synaptics"
    MatchIsTouchpad    "on"
    Option         "ClickFinger3" "2"
    Option         "HorizTwoFingerScroll" "1"
    Option         "VertScrollDelta" "85"
    Option         "HorizScrollDelta" "85"
    Option         "TapButton1" "0"
    Option         "TapButton2" "0"
    Option         "TapButton3" "0"
    Option         "FingerHigh" "8"
    Option         "FingerLow" "8"

You can delete, modify, or add option lines. Here are some frequently used options. (The link refers to another file, but don't worry about that; the path I gave will do the same thing)

Since it's cumbersome to restart each time to test your configuration, I recommend using synclient at the command line. Here's another Arch wiki link that explains how to use synclient. Besides using it to test values for options, you can also see what the default values are for the options you didn't set.

  • 1
    For Linux Mint, the file is at: /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf . Add this stuff to the first section. Aug 12, 2014 at 3:22
  • I doesn't work on ubuntu 15.10. It seems that something overwrites this setting! Mar 28, 2016 at 11:51
  • I created this file, rebooted, and then my keyboard stopped working. This was strange because I edited the touch pad settings as given above, nothing keyboard related.
    – Chester
    Apr 22, 2016 at 23:32

Just use

sudo apt-get install gsynaptics

Graphical interface to control your touchpad. Much easier.

  • E: Unable to locate package gsynaptics
    – Michael
    Apr 23, 2019 at 1:16

Great adjustement Chan-Ho Suh, you can do this changes to get "Natual scrolling":

Option "VertScrollDelta" "-85" and Option "HorizScrollDelta" "-85"

I used the following: make the /etc/X11/xorg.conf file as recommended above:

# /etc/X11/xorg.conf

Section "InputClass"
    Identifier         "Touchpad"
    Driver             "synaptics"
    MatchIsTouchpad    "on"

then do this:

$ sudo sh -c "synclient -l | sed 's/    \([a-Z0-9]*\) *= \([0-9.-]*\)/\tOption \"\1\" \"\2\"/' >> /etc/X11/xorg.conf"

this should dump your current touchpad settings into the file and save you a lot of time, just adjust the values from what shows up as a result. Double check the resulting syntax or you may break your X server. This will also dump the "Parameters..:" something like that line that synclient outputs, you'll need to remove that. I'm not sure how to filter it at the command line level. and dont forget to add EndSection at the end.

edited for better version of shell command.

  • the sudo ... | ... pipe doesn't work because the only thing that you are running as root is the synclient -l before the pipe. You may try using sudo both sides of the pipe or englobe the command.
    – Braiam
    Aug 31, 2013 at 13:16
  • for some reason even $ su and running the synclient -l | ... >> .. wouldnt work, it still told me permission denied.. maybe I am remembering what i did incorrectly
    – Paul
    Aug 31, 2013 at 16:20
  • 1
    Because when you are using su, the home variable changes to /root
    – Braiam
    Aug 31, 2013 at 16:23
  • sorry i think i explained poorly. what i did was $ su $ sudo synclient -l | sed 's/ \([a-Z0-9]*\) *= \([0-9.]*\)/\tOption "\1" "\2"/' >> /etc/X11/xorg.conf and received a permission denied. edit: nevermind, this seems to be working fine by that route, I'm not sure what I did. I've adjusted the regex to account for negative values as well.
    – Paul
    Sep 3, 2013 at 13:55
  • su is only to change user and you will need root permissions to do so, the command to run as root session should be sudo su - then run the commands ... and the end do logout or exit.
    – Braiam
    Sep 3, 2013 at 13:59

I found an excellent solution in the forums a couple of days ago specifically for macbooks, if it doesn't feel sensitive add this to your startup

synclient FingerLow=10; synclient FingerHigh=20

Place any name and add that as your command and that's it.

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