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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues Other Hardware
I have heard many people complaining that the Mighty Mouse doesn't recognise their right clicks, due to the touch-sensitive nature of the device. I personally have no problems with it, but a lot of my friends use my Mac and seem not to have the knack for right-clicking. So I came up with a solution, and now no one has any problems.

I simply changed secondary button to the ball rather than the right button. The mouse seems to recognise when you're pressing the ball every time. It's very a simple hint, but it really works.
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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues | 38 comments | Create New Account
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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: rkilgard on Jan 04, '07 08:00:38AM

I have a version of this problem as well. I switched to using my Bluetooth Mighty Mouse with my left hand after breaking my right elbow this summer. I didn't reverse the buttons so that I can switch between hands easily. When I use my right hand, the mouse recognizes the right-click every time, but when I use my left hand, it only recognizes the right-click maybe 10% of the time with a normal hand position. Switching right-click to the middle button won't work for me as I use middle-button paste in X11 on a daily basis (though the original post is absolutely correct about the mouse recognizing the middle-click every time).

I have discovered that arching my fingers more and right-clicking with the tip of my finger rather than letting my hand rest across the whole mouse increases the accuracy of the right-click recognition to maybe 75%. Is this a case of the Mightly Mouse being too smart for its own good?



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: DavidRavenMoon on Jan 04, '07 09:05:42AM

You are lifting your finger off the "left" button before resting it on the "right button, right? You cant have fingers touching both buttons on the Mighty Mouse and get a right click.

The Mighty Mouse is a cool idea, but I like to rest my fingers on the buttons, and found it annoying to use. I like my Logitech MX-700 better.

---
G4/Digital Audio/1GHz, 1 GB, Mac OS X 10.4.8 • www.david-schwab.com • www.myspace/davidschwab • www.imanicoppola.net



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: swilcox on Jan 04, '07 08:10:29AM

I've found that as a left-handed user of the Bluetooth Mighty Mouse, SteerMouse gives me the best control over the 'right'-click (actually left-click for us lefties).



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: johnsawyercjs on Aug 17, '07 11:36:09AM

Even for lefties, shouldn't you still call it a right-click, since "right" refers to the left/right buttons on the mouse, not which hand you're using?



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: pmbuko on Jan 04, '07 08:29:38AM

I've found that right-clicks work most consistently if you lift your index finger off the left side of the mouse beforehand.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: DavidRavenMoon on Jan 04, '07 12:43:24PM
That's the whole point. To make a right click, you must lift you left finger off the top of the mouse.

---
G4/Digital Audio/1GHz, 1 GB, Mac OS X 10.4.8 • www.david-schwab.com • www.myspace/davidschwab • www.imanicoppola.net

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Watch out for stray fingers
Authored by: SeanAhern on Jan 04, '07 08:33:22AM

Remember that the Mighty Mouse doesn't actually have separate "buttons" under that shiny shell. It has one "button" and some sensors to detect where your fingers are placed so it can respond differently. See the bottom of this article for more details.

If you have any finger touching the left side (over the "button" area), OS X will register a left click. It doesn't matter if you actually pressed the mouse with another finger on the right "button". To register a right click, you have to have NO finger on the left side of the mouse.

Here's the table for what happens when the mouse is clicked:

  • no fingers on mouse: primary click
  • one finger on left: primary click
  • one finger on right: secondary click
  • one finger on left and one finger on right: primary click

Try being more careful about your finger placement and see if your right click accuracy improves.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: shadownight on Jan 04, '07 08:34:09AM

This seems like a good solution, but the Mouse preferences don't let me set the ball button as the secondary button...



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: rprather12 on Jan 04, '07 12:07:20PM

Also not a choice on my Mouse preferences.

---
Rick



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: jsuplido on Jan 04, '07 12:10:25PM

I had my wireless mighty mouse changed and I've had no problems (with the right click) ever since. Apple is aware of the problem and they are willing to "quietly" change the mouse.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: mcmikemn on Jan 04, '07 06:29:19PM

I bought a Bluetooth Mighty Mouse and had significant problems right-clicking. I tried every possible combination of clicking (arching fingers, not touching mouse at all except for tip of right finger, multiple fingers, different fingers, entire length of finger, many different positions on right side of mouse, etc). Apple sent me a new mouse in exchange for mine, but it had same problem. I finally returned it.

At that time, I had not heard about the battery "fix," where you take the batteries out and then put them back in and the right-click works. I doubt this is the case, but does anyone have personal experience with this?

- Mike



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: boothefox on Jan 04, '07 01:30:30PM

extremely funny hint - without any instructions how did you get to make the change to the middle button - PLEASE, DO LET US KNOW - the only way i could find is by installing steermouse which messes up the way mouse moves...



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: shakerben on Jan 05, '07 07:10:16AM

sorry...as you can see below i forgot to mention that i used steermouse.

i've not had any problems with it.
i guess the solution offered below will work without steermouse but i've not tried it



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: dan55304 on Jan 04, '07 01:39:35PM

Mine doesn't allow the ball to be configured as the secondary button either. I find this mouse much more form than function. I can only get the right button to work about 20% of the time, even when removing my whole hand and clicking with the index finger. I think I'll finally give up my $70 mouse and go back to my $20 Logictech.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: balthisar on Jan 04, '07 05:58:53PM

Same boat -- I'm using my generic Kensington and generic Logitech (dollar store mouse!) instead of the mighty mice that came with my iMacs. I'm a lefty, but still use left-is-left and right-is-right (why do other lefties need to change this? freaks!), and the right click is too awkward. Yeah, justify it on the technology or not lifting a finger off the left button all you want, but it doesn't work the way I work, so back to the generic mice. Really, though, the only thing I miss is the horizontal scroll, but it's more important to properly right click.

---
--Jim (me)



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: jmat@mac.om on Jan 04, '07 10:47:46PM
To make your ball button (the "center" button) operate as a secondary button (a "right-click") proceed as follows:
  1. Close System Preferences.
  2. In Finder, navigate to your ~Library/Preferences folder.
  3. Make a backup copy of your com.apple.driver.AppleHIDMouse.plist file.

  4. Open your com.apple.driver.AppleHIDMouse.plist file in Apple's Property List Editor (part of Dev Tools).
  5. Click on the "root" expansion triangle.
  6. Change the value for "Button3" to "2".
  7. Save, then Quit the Property List Editor.

  8. Open System Preferences, Keyboard & Mouse panel, Mouse tab.
  9. Click on the popup menu for any button EXCEPT the ball button, then click again (making no change).
  10. Close the preferences panel.
Your ball button should now do a right click. If you look at the settings in System Preferences, it won't say that (it will probably indicate Expose'). Don't click on the popup for the ball button (doing so will undo this change).

My com.apple.driver.AppleHIDMouse.plist is a binary plist file, so I could not edit it in TextEdit.

This is a great hint. I tend to cuddle my mouse with several fingers, so I can never get the right button to work.

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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: boothefox on Mar 05, '07 07:15:15AM
THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH !

For those who have no developer tools installed i recommend Pref Setter http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/26268

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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: noivad on Jan 05, '07 12:12:55AM

I had the same problem and took my finger off the left mouse button when right-clicking. Which, IMO, is a poor, clunky, unApple-like workaround. However, no matter what, you can't hit the left AND right button at the same time. Because of Apple's insistence to make the mouse look simpler and over design a way around a single problem introduced by the design they chose, I had to solve the problem they made by going out and buying a mouse.

It's a Razer, was expensive, and the company didn't stand behind its product when it broke, but (after buying one more) it's better than getting fragged over and over because you can't shoot and launch a grenade or dive and choose a target to attack at the same time.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: Ossa on Jan 05, '07 02:49:33PM

I don't have a problem with right clicking on the Mighty Mouse. Why is it so hard (or, perhaps, anathema) for people with an index finger to click with that finger only, moving it to the left or to the right as need be? That's what I do, and I don't find it difficult at all. In fact, it's downright simple!



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: sjk on Jan 05, '07 05:00:32PM

Please don't generalize your lack of problems to other people. I find it easier to use my index finger for left-click and middle finger for right-click because that's where those fingers naturally rest on the mouse. Using my index finger for right-click would be an awkward motion.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: shakerben on Jan 05, '07 07:08:26AM

sorry. i forgot to mention in the hint that i used steermouse to change it to secondary click.

there are many utilities which offer this extra functionality.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: jmat@mac.om on Jan 05, '07 09:44:14AM

No, you don't need SteerMouse, just the Dev Tools from Apple. See my earlier comment.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: Gargamell on Jan 28, '07 10:27:54AM

I must sign in to contribute to this.

I am a developer and use Eclipse A LOT. There is nothing about the Mac design that I do not like, but I think it is almost ridiculous that right click is seemlingly banned. It is not a bad idea.

And in any case, I cannot get the right click to work consistently. I have followed the replies on this thread, and even with only one finger on the right side of the MightMouse - I am no where near 10% of the time getting a successful context click. I admit I am new to macs, and I am truly all about them. I told my housemates earlier that I was hooked to developing with my new macbookpro. Today I got a mighty mouse (after being told that it was capable of the right click) please help me figure out a way to get a consistent right click!!


Thanks,
~Garg



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: doghair on Jan 29, '07 09:24:07AM

I too use Eclipse on my Mac and have had no trouble at all with right clicking the mighty mouse.
My fingers are positioned at the top of the mouse, either side of the scroll ball. As mentioned previously, a right click is only recognised when the left side has no finger (ie source of mild electrical current!) near it.
Since I have two mighty mice for my two macs, the only problems I've had are sticky balls: Maybe your mouse is faulty?
I guess you could try breathing on the front of the mouse (like on a window in winter) too see if that improves the electrical conductivity...?



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: Faith on Feb 03, '07 09:52:42AM

I was very frustrated on the inconstistant nature of the right click on the wireless mighty mouse. I have done many seaches and tried switching out the mouse with Apple, other software and not having pressure on the left side of the mouse without success. What finally worked for me is:

Go:

Macintosh HD
System
Library
Extentsions


Delete Files:

AppleADBMouse.kext
AppleHIDMouse.kext

My mouse (every thing about it including the scroll and right click) works very well. It does change the mouse preference panel back. Please note that I am not a Mac expert, just someone determined to find a solution to a mouse I like but the right click was driving me nuts.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: Kikokun on Dec 21, '07 11:24:47PM

Thanks Faith,
I followed your instructions and it worked like a charm, my RMB is back from the dead!



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Have you tried re-pairing
Authored by: TicToc on Feb 04, '07 11:54:46PM

No pun intended, but I found that by re-pairing my Bluetooth Mighty Mouse, right-click was repaired. Not 100% reliable, but probably 80-90%.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: Schwie on Feb 08, '07 08:10:02AM

I have the Bluetooth Mighty Mouse. A more reliable way to fix this issue is:

1. Power the Mighty Mouse down.
2. Remove the batteries.
3. Wait 10 seconds.
4. Insert batteries.
5. Power mouse on.

This fixed the issue for me. Right clicking is 10 times more accurate now.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: jdm on Mar 13, '07 09:59:28PM

Brilliant! This worked perfectly for me.
Thanks!



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: rhache on Aug 15, '07 09:30:07PM

Incredibly, Schwie's advice to power the mouse down, removing the batteries and reinserting them worked for me.

Who would've thought! :)

Rene



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: onacit on Nov 06, '07 06:02:20PM

Woops! It works for me! Great!!



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These kinds of things are funny
Authored by: jiclark on Feb 08, '07 09:43:27AM

and not to denigrate those with issues, since I know how frustrating they can be, but I have just the opposite problem!

When I use a MM, I have a really hard time *not* triggering a right-click! And I've experienced this with several different computer/mouse combos, since I do a fair bit of Mac consulting. I've always wondered why, but for me, something about the way I hold the mouse causes me to trigger a right-click all the time. I have to really concentrate on clicking on the left side of the mouse to get a consistent primary click.

Weird, eh? Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I use a trackball on my computers, so I don't find mice in general very satisfactory.

It sounds to me like there are some software issues out there though.



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These kinds of things are funny
Authored by: dand on Feb 08, '07 12:31:59PM

My girlfriend and a couple of other people who have used my MM have had this problem. It makes it pretty much impossible to use for them! I suppose this is why right-clicking with the MM is disabled by default.

I noticed that these people hold the mouse closer to the bottom of the mouse and the index finger lies further to the right.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: royke on Feb 09, '07 02:45:18PM

i have the solution, its quit simple, when you click on the right side of the mouse (right click) lift up your left finger ! Its a very sensible sensor that detect your finger on the left side of the mouse !!

Gr. Roy



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: peragrin on Feb 10, '07 03:07:04PM

For me I have to raise my left finger nearly 3/4 of an inch in order to get the mighty mouse to work right. Playing a game or doing something right requires lots of right lcicking quickly becomes painful.

I simply use a logitech mouse for my Mac mini and a targus mini mouse for my laptop. The mini mouse travels with me, most of the time, so if I find a mighty mouse i just swap them out.

---
I thought once I was found but it was only a dream



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: johnsawyercjs on Aug 17, '07 11:54:14AM

As others have noted above, a sure fix is:

Goto: store or website
Buy: a different, normal two-button mouse that doesn't try to pointlessly redefine how we use two-button mice

My current favorite is the Logitech LX-5 wireless optical mouse. Not too big, not too small, not too weird a shape, no extra buttons to get in the way. Has a scroll wheel that does horizontal scrolling too. $25 at Radio Shack, etc. Uses a transceiver on the end of a cable, not a little flash drive-style USB dongle as I would have preferred, but I'll live. Radio frequency it uses isn't 2.4 GHz, unlike some, so its signal doesn't get messed up when there's a wifi transmission happening in the room--with another mouse I've got, that uses 2.4 GHz, connected to a desktop Mac, its pointer becomes very jumpy when I'm downloading files over a wifi connection, using a laptop within a couple feet of the mouse.

You can also make mice noticeably lighter, by using lithium batteries.



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A simple fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: guywithcable on Jan 08, '08 01:07:10PM
If you use Windows on your mac, you can right click using a key with MacKB4Win from sciactive.com. It lets you right click and left click at the same time too. Does anyone know a program to do the same thing on OS X? Preferably freeware.

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A, not so simple, fix for Mighty Mouse right-click issues
Authored by: lucaseve on May 29, '09 01:34:56PM
Hi everybody

I was afflicted by the same problem of an excessive sensivity of the right "button".
I definitely solved it with an hardware modification to my mighty mouse.

I tought that lowering a little the surface that get the electrical charge of the finger, could decrease the sensitivity of the system for the right clicks so, to diminish the sensivity of the right part of the mouse, I cut away with a sharp cutter some left side parts of the electrical films attached to the back of the mouse upper shell.

It seem I was right but don't ask me why because I'm a software engineer, not an hardware one...
Because a picture worths more than 1000 words, I uploaded a picture where is easy to see the parts I cut away circled with a black mark.

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT, ACTUALLY, YOU MUST CUT THE RIGHT SIDE BECAUSE YOU WORK ON THE SHELL IN AN UPSIDE-DOWN POSITION!!

Modified Mighty Mouse

OF COURSE I DON'T GET ANT RESPONSIBILITY IN ANY CASE IF THE TRICK DOESN'T WORK WITH YOUR MOUSE FOR ANY REASON.
YOU TRY IT AT YOUR OWN RISK.

Best regards,

Luca

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