Chapter 31. Mouse Configuration

The installation program allows users to select the type of mouse connected to the system. To configure a different mouse type for the system, use the Mouse Configuration Tool.

To start the Mouse Configuration Tool, type the command system-config-mouse at a shell prompt (for example, in an XTerm or GNOME terminal). If the X Window System is not running, the text-based version of the tool is started.

Figure 31-1. Select Mouse

Select the new mouse type for the system. If the specific mouse model is not listed, select one of the Generic entries, based on the mouse's number of buttons and its interface. If there is not an exact match, select the generic match that is most compatible with the system and the mouse.

The built-in pointing device such as a touch pad on a laptop computer is usually PS/2 compatible.

All the mouse types are appended with PS/2, serial, or USB in parentheses. This specifies the mouse port.

A PS/2 mouse port looks similar to .

A serial mouse port looks similar to .

A USB mouse port looks similar to .


Select the Generic - Wheel Mouse entry, with the proper mouse port, to enable the scroll button on the mouse.

The scroll button on a wheel mouse can be used as the middle mouse button for cutting text, pasting text, and other middle mouse button functions. If the mouse only has two buttons, select Emulate 3 buttons to use a two-button mouse as a three-button mouse. When this option enabled, clicking the two mouse buttons simultaneously emulates a middle mouse button click.

If a serial port mouse is selected, click the Serial devices button to configure the correct serial device number, such as /dev/ttyS0 for the mouse.

Click OK to save the new mouse type. The selection is written to the file /etc/sysconfig/mouse, and the console mouse service, gpm is restarted. The changes are also written to the X Window System configuration file /etc/X11/xorg.conf; however, the mouse type change is not automatically applied to the current X session. To enable the new mouse type, log out of the graphical desktop and log back in.


To reset the order of the mouse buttons for a left-handed user, go to Applications (the main menu on the panel) => Preferences => Mouse, and select Left-handed mouse for the mouse orientation.