esSJae's Virtualization Blog

Virtualization and other IT topics

Disabling a Dell PointStick (TrackStick) in CrunchBang Linux

Posted by essjae on April 9, 2012


I recently discovered CrunchBang Linux, an awesome Debian based distro, and have been testing it as an alternative to Windows 8.

I installed it on a spare Dell D630 notebook at work and found out the the little pointstick caused the pointer to randomly wander around the screen.  Since I never use the PointStick I wanted to disable it.  In Windows, there is a nice little Dell utility that allows you to customize the behavior of the PointStick and TouchPad.

However, in Linux, it’s a little different (command line), but almost as easy.

The key tool is xinput (thanks to this post on ceder’s blog)

You can disable the device via a couple simple commands:

"xinput list"
# xinput list
⎡ Virtual core pointer                        id=2    [master pointer  (3)]
⎜   ↳ Virtual core XTEST pointer                  id=4    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ Microsoft Microsoft Wireless Optical Mouse® 1.0A    id=10    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ DualPoint Stick                             id=12    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ AlpsPS/2 ALPS DualPoint TouchPad            id=13    [slave  pointer  (2)]
⎜   ↳ Macintosh mouse button emulation            id=14    [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)]
    ↳ Video Bus                                   id=7    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Power Button                                id=8    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ Sleep Button                                id=9    [slave  keyboard (3)]
    ↳ AT Translated Set 2 keyboard                id=11    [slave  keyboard (3)]

to find the “DualPoint Stick” device

# xinput -set-prop "DualPoint Stick" "Device Enabled" 0
to disable it
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