Assume a synaptics compatible mousepad that has no physical buttons, but where the whole surface is physically clickable (not a tap, but physically clickable). A particular touchpad with these features is the one found on Macbook Pro (BCM5974).

How, if possible, can this device be configured to act like a normal touchpad, with physical buttons?

|                     |
|   Touch sensitive   |
|        area         |   (Note that the entire area including buttons
|                     |    can be physically clicked on this type of
|                     |    touchpad).
|                     |
+----------+----------+ <- AreaBottomEdge, touchpad disabled under this line.
| Button 1 | Button 2 |

I can get the area of the touchpad below "AreaBottomEdge" disabled as touch sensitive simply by giving synclient this argument. The pad can still be clicked (again, not tapped) in this area though, which is what I want. I can also easily disable tapping, which I don't want, I do this with TapButton=0. For AreaBottomEdge I have it set to 4000 which seems reasonable on my particular setup.

However, the problem is that click and drag doesn't work. Touching any two arbitrary points on the touchpad (even under AreaBottomEdge) simply doesn't move the cursor. To make it clear what doesn't work: Touching the area "Button 1" (even without clicking) while trying to move the cursor on "Touch sensitive area" does not work. I need to not only be able to touch the area on "Button 1" while moving the cursor, but to click it.

I've looked at the various options for synaptics, I've tried some of them, including LockedDrags and TapAndDragGesture, but it doesn't do what I want.

Can it be done? If not with synclient, then how?

1 Answer 1


This is by no means a full answer, but the arch manual(Buttonless touchpads (aka ClickPads)) has some info on how to fix it. I will look into it more when I have time.

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