The track pad has become an integral feature for laptops whether you use a Mac or a PC. In Windows, however, track pads are somewhat of a debated subject. Many long-time laptop PC users have switched to external mice because of the functionality they bring back to the table. Others stick close to the track pad.
If you’ve made the leap on a PC, this guide will show you how to disable the track pad when using an external mouse through Windows’ settings.
Disable the Track Pad When Using An External Mouse
Keep in mind: These instructions may vary from PC to PC and are being shown to you in Windows 8.1. This will get you in the right direction and depending on the type of track pad you have installed, you’ll be in the right place to find the proper setting. if you have third party software installed managing your mouse, you can skip the following steps and use its options/settings to disable the track pad on your laptop.
There are many reasons why you may want to disable the track pad on your laptop when using an external mouse. It all comes own to how you use the keyboard and where the track pad lies. If it’s in the center of the laptop, you may accidentally stray and cause your mouse to go haywire when you need it to stay in place. For gamers, this can be especially frustrating when you’re working on something important in your game. By disabling the track pad, you can rest assured that only it has control over where the cursor on your screen goes.
Make sure you’re logged into the Administrator account for your PC before continuing. Otherwise, you’ll need to reapply these settings each time you restart your laptop. As long as the external mouse isn’t plugged in, your computer users will be able to utilize the track pad regardless of whether these settings are applied system-wide or not.
All right, let’s get started with the following steps to disable the track pad when using a USB mouse:
Use the “Win + X” shortcut to open the Win + X Menu. From there, click on “Control Panel”
You’re looking for the Mouse options. You can search for them or navigate to them.
Click on the link to open mouse settings.
This is where things my deviate from track pad to track pad and laptop to laptop.
Click on “Device Settings” or “Settings” if available.
You should see an option similar to “Disable internal pointing device when external USB pointing device is attached.”
It may not be the exact text for your laptop’s track pad but you should be able to find it within this set of mouse settings.
Click on the check box next to the setting.
Then, click “Apply” and “OK.”
This has saved the setting.
Now, if you attempt to use the track pad, you’ll find that it no longer works when you have an external USB-based mouse plugged in. This won’t work if you plug in an older mouse that relies on other connections, nor will it work if you’re using a Bluetooth-based mouse. There are third party software programs that let you control how your PC interacts when a Bluetooth-based mouse is connected to a PC so you can disable the track pad that way.
Whenever you restart your PC, these settings will be in effect so long as you have USB-based mouse plugged in. It will take a few seconds after plugging it in and unplugging it for the track pad to either disable or enable itself. Otherwise, this is a great way to take advantage of both types of mice for your laptop when necessary.
Don’t worry Mac users, we’ll be showing you how to do this shortly with a guide of your own.
Disabling a track pad may vary laptop to laptop, but these basic instructions will get you in the right direction. If you’re using a mouse with any type of accompanying software, such as a Logitech mouse, you may also be able to disable the track pad through the software’s settings. Disabling a track pad ensures you don’t accidentally move your mouse when you’re not expecting to.