I just installed Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on my Lenovo Thinkpad P50s. Very quickly my mouse clicks stopped working. I can still click on the application launcher, but nowhere else. I’m totally new to Linux, so I have no idea how to start trying to fix this.

Update: Now my red dot isn’t working, and I can only move the move the mouse with the touchpad.

Update 2: Tried the unity --replace & solution and it did not work I plugged in a wired mouse that works When I do cat /proc/bus/input/devices/ the touchpad is not listed at all. I might add that the touchpad and trackpoint worked fine during the installation process. Could this be a hardware issue? I didn't think so at first because the computer has just been sitting here on my couch the whole time.

Update 3: Booted from the USB again and chose to try Ubuntu without installing and the mouse and touchpad work perfectly.

Going to try my luck reinstalling Ubuntu now

  • Did you ever figure this out? I have this same issue. I installed Ubuntu on an ASUS Zenbook, everything worked fine for a couple weeks. Then the trackpad and keyboard just stopped working. I can click on app icons to launch them, but once a window is open I can't click on anything or type. Commented Jun 21, 2018 at 23:57

7 Answers 7


Try running this command in the terminal.

unity --replace &

If you're using the Compiz or Metacity window managers (which you are likely not, but if you're in this situation it will help), do this instead.

compiz --replace &

And for Metacity

metacity --replace &

It's very important you leave the & in there, so that the command is run in the background. If you CTRL-C or abort these commands while they're running, they could mess up your IO devices even more (for the session at least).

This thread on Superuser might help you. The original poster actually had a hardware problem, but there are a lot of answers that might work for you.

  • I tried that and it did not work. when I run cat /proc/bus/input/devices/ I do not see the Synaptics touchpad listed at all Commented Dec 28, 2017 at 8:14
  • There's a touchpad disable button or key combo on some laptops. Commented Dec 28, 2017 at 12:41

I had tried everthing, and the problem still wouldn't go away until I finally found Mouse suddenly stops working in Ubuntu (running as guest in VirtualBox with Windows host)

ps -ax | grep VBoxClient

resulting e.g. in (among other entries):

1429 ?        Sl      0:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --draganddrop

Then kill all processes with

VBoxClient --draganddrop

After killing the processes, my mouse left click worked again. No need to reboot the VM every time!!

  • Saved my day! Did not even have right click.
    – fiscblog
    Commented May 12, 2020 at 16:55

Just Open the Terminal using Ctrl+ALt+T and type the following commands
modprobe -r psmouse Removes it
modprobe psmouse readds it

  • 1
    This is unlikely to help as mouse movements are reported to work.
    – RalfFriedl
    Commented Jun 2, 2019 at 16:33
  • alright , yes it is working was an issue for some time Commented Jul 21, 2019 at 14:18
  • 1
    This one worked for me. thx Commented Nov 5, 2019 at 15:14

Running 16.04 on a Dell 5520 and 13 months after buying the laptop (factory installed Ubuntu) I had this issue. Tried the "unity --replace &" command, and it worked.


I used htop command and killed (using the opiton 9) one occurrence of compiz. It worked. But is it recommended?


Discovered that if I uncheck the USB Logitech USB Receiver in the VM settings menu mouse pointer reappears.


I have the mouse buttons suddenly stop responding (scroll also) in VirtualBox. This is rare, but a big hassle when it happens.

My solution so far has been to get back to Ubuntu, the host with Right Ctrl in the guest then Alt+Tab to host. Mouse buttons still dead.

Then using keyboard navigation, go to the VirtualBox management window and save/close the VM. Once the VM is not running, the mouse functions fully again. Killing the VM from Ubuntu using kill -9, or top will also restore the mouse but with loss/damage to the VM.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .