How to change mouse sensitivity: Windows and Mac

how to change mouse sensitivity (1)

Guide outlines how to change mouse sensitivity for PCs running Windows 10, 8, 7 or XP, and how to change mouse sensitivity and speed for Macs.

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When plugging in a new mouse, you may need to adjust the mouse sensitivity. The sensitivity of the mouse is always a question of habit and is therefore determined differently by each user. We will show you how to adjust the mouse according to your needs.

How to change mouse sensitivity in Windows

Adjust the mouse in Microsoft Windows 7, 8 and 10

  1. Open the Control Panel and select the “Hardware and Sound” category.
  2. Then click on “Mouse” under “Devices and Printers” so that another window opens.
  3. Switch to the “Pointer Options” tab at the top and you will find the “Motion” category there.
  4. Here you can adjust the sensitivity of the mouse according to your needs.
  5. Your settings are accepted by clicking the “OK” button. The sensitivity can be changed again at any time.

Adjust the sensitivity of the mouse in Windows XP

  1. Open the [Control Panel] in the start menu and select the [Printers and other hardware] category.
  2. In this category click on [Mouse].
  3. A window with the name “Mouse properties” opens. To set the sensitivity of the mouse, click on the [Pointer option] tab.
  4. Simply move the lever under “Movement” to change the sensitivity of the mouse.

The mouse speed is inherently slow on Apple computers. But those who work with larger monitors need a faster mouse pointer. We’ll show you how to change the mouse speed.

How to change mouse sensitivity and speed on a Mac

  • Open the system settings  and in it go to: mouse.
  • While moving the pointer, slide the slider further to the right in the direction of Fast.

Then you can try it out right away: the mouse pointer should move much faster. Keep trying until you find the pointer speed that is comfortable for you.

What is the right mouse pointer speed?

How fast you want the mouse pointer to be depends on your needs. However, a few tips can help narrow down these needs:

  • the larger the screen, the more worthwhile a quick mouse pointer
  • For fine graphical work where you need to position the mouse pointer down to the pixel, reduce the speed
  • For games that require fast movements, such as turning the character around, choose a fast mouse speed

How to turn off mouse acceleration on Mac

Open Terminal on your Mac. You can use the following instruction to check how the acceleration settings are currently:

defaults find scaling

If the lines just flicker along your screen, the terminal has found too many entries. In this case, give it a try

defaults find scaling | more

Then a message like this should appear in the terminal window:

Found 3 keys in domain 'Apple Global Domain': {
    "" = 2;
    "" = "0.875"; 
    "" = "1.5";

To switch off the mouse acceleration, enter this command in the terminal:

defaults write .GlobalPreferences -1

You can then check the settings again. They should now look like this:

Found 3 keys in domain 'Apple Global Domain': {
    "" = "-1";
    "" = "0.875";
    "" = "1.5";

Important: As soon as you change something in the mouse settings in the system settings, the acceleration is switched on again. Then you need to repeat the command shown above.