AutoSensitivity: Configure different pointer speeds for mouse and touchpad

Anyone that has used a laptop with a touchpad and external mouse knows using the same pointer speed (“sensitivity”) for both is not ideal. Unfortunately, Windows does not allow users to customize different speeds for touchpads and external mice. That is why AutoSensitivity was created.

What Is It

AutoSensitivity is an open source program that allows you to set different pointer speeds/sensitivities for touchpad and external mouse. When it detects you are using an external mouse, it automatically changes the pointer speed setting in Windows (the one found in Control Panel -> Mouse -> Pointer Options -> Motion) to the Mouse level you set in AutoSensitivity. When it detects you are not using an external mouse (in other words, using the touchpad), it automatically changes the pointer speed setting in Windows to the Touchpad level you set in AutoSensitivity.

Using AutoSensitivity

After you install AutoSensitivity, run it and set the pointer speed levels you desire for touchpad and mouse by moving the sliders for reach respective setting. Then simply hit the Minimize button. AutoSensitivity sits in your system tray and automatically makes adjustments to the pointer speed setting in Windows as you connect or disconnect an external mouse.

The Get Current button allows you to get the level currently set for the pointer speed; and the Apply button allows you to instantly apply that new sensitivity to the pointer speed setting in Windows.

Since AutoSensitivity is a program you (probably) want running all the time, it has the ability to autorun at Windows boot; and the ability to automatically start minimized, so you don’t have to see it until you need to change a setting.

“What If I Use Touchpad And Mouse At The Same time?”

If you use a touchpad and external mouse at the same time (i.e. you have external mouse connected but have not disabled the touchpad), then the sensitivity setting you set for Mouse in AutoSensitivity is what will be applied for both. Unfortunately it just isn’t possible to have different pointer speeds for touchpad and external mouse concurrently without custom drivers — that is a limitation of Windows.

Conclusion

AutoSensitivity would be a lot more useful if it was portable seeing as many people that who would want to use it are probably those people that use laptops for work and travel (you know, the laptops that may not allow installation of unapproved software). However, even its current form, AutoSensitivity is very useful for those of us annoyed by having to use the same sensitivity for touchpad and mouse.

You can grab AutoSensitivity from the links below:

Version reviewed: v1.4

Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista/Win7

.NET Framework 3.5 is required

Download size: 2 KB

Malware status: VirusTotal malware scan (0/43)

AutoSensitivity homepage [direct download]

[via AddictiveTips]

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7 comments

  1. mukhi

    @Rob (Down Under):
    Rob, i completely agree with you that touchpad is not very friendly, specially, if you don’t have “practice”. but hey look, i am not a gamer, i am a scientist (in particular, traveling), and given the fact that i have been using touchpad since 2003 (less use of mouse), i am comfortable with it other than the time when i go for “very fast” successive clicking (rare instances).

    “clumsiness” were, is and will always be associated with the concept of a laptop no matter what designs are offered. this is one of the reasons why i finally bought my home computer in form of a mobile desktop. 17″, FHD display, built-in desktop like numpad, much better touchpad, chiclet keyboard, HD webcam, dolby speaker,…

    oh ya, i am gonna use mouse with it as i have a plan not to move it!
    spoiler: i still carry a tiny mouse (like you said) in my backpack like in case…

  2. Rob (Down Under)

    @mukhi:
    I worked in the IT section of a very large telecommunications company.
    The parent company in Europe, decided to send a bunch of their managers to our Australian company. Thus we had wall to wall managers. All of the managers got laptops. The rest of the IT staff (approx 300) had desktop PCs.
    All the managers had large monitors, and keyboard, and mouse at their 2 most used locations (work and home). And they had a docking station at both work and home.
    The first thing they did when arriving at work, was place their laptop into the dock.
    That may be too expensive for you, and you may have multiple locations. But if I were you, I would get a tiny mouse that will fit in a shirt pocket, and carry that with me. They are less than $5 (eBay), so you could lash out and get a few, and have one in each of your locations.
    Surely(Flying High), you don’t favor the clumsiness of a touchpad ?

  3. mukhi

    @Rob (Down Under):
    on the other hand, i prefer using touchpad; the reason is simple: i want a portable device as a portable device. adding external gadgets, IMO, kills portability. in laptop, everything is designed to “get the job done” although just like its hardware, nothing does as good as the desktop counterpart does. like
    touchpad – mouse
    Fn+numeric keys – numpad
    built-in speaker – ext. speaker
    built-in keyboard – ext. keyboard
    built-in webcam – ext. webcam
    built-in screen – ext. monitor
    and so on!!!

    @Elaine
    i don’t mind .NET as many programs (read: good and useful ones) use .NET anyway.

    after all these, i can’t still recommend autosensitivity. it does what it is supposed to do but it takes 50 MB RAM while running (too much for a dottechie to get this small job done)! in addition to that, it does not let me shut down/restart/hibernate my XP while it is running (you must exit this program)! what the heck?

  4. Rob (Down Under)

    I detest touchpads.
    I am not a man of violence, however if any of you use a touchpad, and you see me walking around with a machete in my hand, do not be using a touchpad, or your friends will be calling you Lefty.

    Whilst I am walking around with a machete, there is a group in Australia called the Wiggles.
    It is a group of grown men, who dress up in bright colors, and wiggle their hands vigorously to entertain children (via a TV show).
    They too should never be in my vicinity, whilst wiggling.