How to Disable a Touchpad When Using a Mouse

By Shawn McClain

The touchpad is a useful way to navigate around your laptop, but even a light incidental touch can move your cursor when you are trying to type. When you have an external pointing device, like a USB mouse, the touchpad stops being useful and becomes only a nuisance. It only takes a few simple steps to disable to touchpad and save yourself some frustration, and some laptop manufacturers even have a setting that will disable the touchpad whenever a USB pointing device is plugged in.

Step 1

Click on the Start button located at the lower left corner of your screen. This will bring up the Start Menu.

Step 2

Choose "Control Panel" from the Start Menu. It should be located on the right side of the menu.

Step 3

Double-click on the "Mouse" icon in the control panel. If your control panel doesn't have a long list of icons, click on "Classic View" on the left side of the window, then double-click on "Mouse" once the control panel loads.

Step 4

Click on the "Device" or the "Device Settings" tab, depending on your operating system. If you see your touchpad listed, click on it and then press the "Disable" button. Some touchpads will have a special screen here where you can enable and disable the touchpad and touchpad buttons by clicking a radial button, and you can also place a check mark next to "Disable Touch Pad when USB pointing device is present." Add a check mark here if you see this option. This will automatically disable the touchpad whenever you connect a USB mouse. Click the "OK" button when you are done.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you see a touchpad icon in your system tray at the bottom right side of your screen, you can double-click it to go directly into the touchpad settings window.