How can I get the middle mouse button to behave correctly in Ubuntu? Clicking the middle button does not show the arrow which allows me to scroll the page by moving the mouse.


  1. Firefox 3.6.8
  2. Mouse: Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer 3.0

2 Answers 2


For recent versions of Firefox (version 96+) see this answer.

Original answer

Edit ➜ Preferences ➜ Advanced ➜ Check 'Use autoscrolling'

enter image description here

  • Works for me only if smooth scrolling is disabled.
    – Somebody
    Dec 17, 2013 at 15:06
  • 4
    Worked for me even with smooth scrolling enabled. Kubuntu 14.10 Firefox 29. Really usefull when using a stylus!
    – user69112
    Jun 17, 2014 at 20:00
  • 1
    Great to know this can be switched off.
    – Harald
    Sep 17, 2017 at 8:33
  • 2
    In about:config this is listed as general.autoScroll - To be set to true to activate.
    – FelixJN
    Feb 10, 2019 at 14:19

Edit 2024-01-16: this answer is verified with Firefox 121.0.1

Edit 2022-01-28: this answer is verified with Firefox 96.0b3

Edit 2020-11-23: this answer is verified with Firefox 62.0.3

Edit 2018-03-14: this answer is verified with Firefox 58.02

Just to precise, since version 57 of Firefox the path is the following: Menu ➜ Preferences ➜ General, then all the way down in the Browsing section check the box Use auto scrolling.
You can also just type auto in the search field once you're in the Preferences window.

See this screenshot:

Activation of the auto scrolling with the middle button of the mouse

  • Works also in Firefox 83.
    – Rob Bar
    Nov 20, 2020 at 20:29

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