Today I was typing up a mail, the second I hit send in my mail client, my mouse pointer starts to shake and jump slowly but annoyingly enough to make it unworkable, I suspected that my 10 year old IntellyEye mouse went on life-support but when I unplugged it, it was still happening, also when I moved to another USB port. (I have 5 of them to try).

Somehow my touchpad caused all this. So I had to disable it entirely in Ubuntu. It’s really easy to do so:

root@crashy:~# xinput list
⎡ Virtual core pointer                          id=2    [master pointer  (3)]
⎜   ↳ Virtual core XTEST pointer                id=4    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ Microsoft Microsoft 5-Button Mouse with IntelliEye(TM)    id=9    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ PS/2 Mouse                                id=12   [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ AlpsPS/2 ALPS GlidePoint                  id=13   [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎣ Virtual core keyboard                         id=3    [master keyboard (2)]
    ↳ Virtual core XTEST keyboard               id=5    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Video Bus                                 id=6    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Power Button                              id=7    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Sleep Button                              id=8    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Laptop Integrated Webcam                  id=10   [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ AT Translated Set 2 keyboard              id=11   [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Dell WMI hotkeys                          id=14   [slave  keyboard (3)]

If one of the lines mentions a touchpad or glidepoint (perhaps also “Synaptics” or “ALPS”), your touchpad has been detected. For me that is ID 13. On the command line, as the user who’s logged into X-windows you do:

# xinput set-prop 13 "Device Enabled" 0

And the touchpad is disabled, this works right away. My problem was gone, and my TouchPad too, I don’t used it anyway.