How to Reset the MacBook Pro Trackpad?

By Andrew Tennyson

A trackpad that doesn’t work as it should can seriously affect both productivity and how much you enjoy using your laptop. MacBook Pro laptops running the OS X Yosemite operating system have a dedicated configuration panel you can use to set point, click, scroll, zoom and gesture settings. This panel is accessed through the MacBook’s System Preferences window.

Understanding the Trackpad Configuration Panel

The Trackpad configuration panel is part of your MacBook's System Preferences. To access it, click the “Apple” menu in the top-left corner of your MacBook’s screen and select “System Preferences” to load the System Preferences panel. Click the “Trackpad” icon to load the Trackpad configuration panel. Here you can view your current trackpad settings. Along the top of the panel are three tabs: one for Point and Click settings, one for Scroll and Zoom and a third called More Gestures. Each tab contains customizable features. Hover your mouse over the feature to view a graphical example of how to manipulate the trackpad to activate that feature. Place a check mark next to a feature to enable it. Remove the check mark to disable it.

Resetting Point & Click Settings

The Point & Click tab contains four features. They include, in order from top to bottom: “Tap to Click,” “Secondary Click,” “Look Up” and “Three finger drag.” To set the trackpad back to its defaults, remove the check marks from the first and fourth boxes and add check marks to the second and third. There is also a Tracking Speed slider on this tab that you can adjust to control how fast the mouse pointer moves around the screen.

Resetting Scroll & Zoom Settings

The Scroll & Zoom tab contains four features. From top to bottom they are: “Scroll direction: natural,” “Zoom in or out,” “Smart zoom” and “Rotate.” Place check marks next to all four items to reset them to their original settings.

Configuring Other Trackpad Gestures

The More Gestures tab contains seven customizable trackpad gestures designed to help you move between apps, control your Web browser, launch the Notification Center, enter the Mission Control screen and more. To set this section back to its defaults, place check marks next to every item except for “App Expose.” Several of the items have drop-down menus that enable you to choose which gesture to use to initiate the associated action. To refine the default settings for an item, click its drop-down menu and select the desired gesture. If you click the drop-down menu beneath Mission Control, for example, you can set it to “Swipe up with three fingers” or “Swipe up with four fingers.”