How to Speed Up Mouse Tracking on Mac OS X

Sometimes I feel that my mouse tracking is not fast enough but when I check its settings on System Preferences it's already set to the maximum possible speed. Here is a very simple (and fast) solution to that problem.

Open Terminal.app (/Applications/Terminal)

Enter the following command:

defaults read -g com.apple.mouse.scaling

That should return the current speed of your mouse tracking as an integer. Mine was 5 and I want to update it to 10. Here is how I did it...

To change the speed of your mouse tracking you can simply run the following command:

defaults write -g com.apple.mouse.scaling your_mouse_speed

where your_mouse_speed is the speed you want to set to your mouse tracking.

Then you'll have to Log Out or restart your Mac to see the changes take effect.

UPDATE: As reported by the reader Squished Spider, if you update your settings using the approach above and perform any changes to the Mouse settings using Mac OS System Preferences later then the system will override everything you did and it will revert them back to the slow mouse behavior even though you've set it to the maximum speed.

Comments

  1. I've done this but if I change the tracking speed in mouse preferences or restart my mac I'm back to square one with a tracking number of 3 :(

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello Squished Spider,
    Did you log out and then log in again? That's the only requirement for this to work.
    Hope this helps,
    -Marcelo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi - yes I did but it seems if you touch anything in mouse preferences OS X then drops back to the default 3 so I have to write the scaling into a Terminal window again. In other words OS X doesn't allow me to permanently alter the scaling from 3. Rather annoying!

      Delete
    2. Ahh! Yeah.. I've seen that happening... and you're right, it's annoying. Thanks for noting that. I'll put a note in the blog post soon.

      Delete
  3. so what now? i just bought my magic mouse now and i am dying to speed my mouse. please let me know any tip to make it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Hamed, it's just unclear to me if you have tried the approached described on this blog post. Please let me know if that doesn't work for you...
      Thanks,
      -Marcelo

      Delete
  4. Thanks! Worked great! Just what I needed.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Didn't really help here, but thanks for the post :)

    I seriously hate the way mice behave on the Mac. Before I got one myself I used to marvel at Mac users, with their having to move their mouse a full diagonal, then lift it and put it back down at the starting point, repeating and rinsing several times to move their cursor from one corner of the screen to the other. Amazing(ly frustrating).

    Now that I've had an Air for a year, the touchpad is the direct opposite: I'ts responsive and quick, just like with Windows (which, even though it's the only OS I don't actually use, is the only OS that has mouse behavior perfect down to a tee).

    Plugging in a mouse is like having your wrist secured by rubber bands, some magical kind which sometimes let go and then grab a hold again. It's immensily frustrating (to the point where you want to go, "HULK SMASH!", and crush that ever-so-expensive piece of hardware, and incredibly badly coded, which is amazing, considering that Apple is a company so big, their market value way surpasses that of the entire markets in Spain, Italy, and Greece put together.

    Someone at Apple, please pay someone a couple of grand to fix this pathetic piece of crap code. It's f***ing retarded.

    ReplyDelete
  6. fully agree...mouse looks expensive but it is peace of crap and probably health hazard, so slow and tiering to use...

    ReplyDelete
  7. That should return mouse tracking the current speed of your mouse tracking as an integer. Mine was 5 and I want to update it to 10. Here is how I did it...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Here is how I did it . . ." , is that a joke or do you not realize that you didn't tell us?

      Delete
    2. "Here is how I did it . . ." , is that a joke or do you not realize that you didn't tell us?

      Delete
  8. hi...Im student from Informatics engineering nice article,
    thanks for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
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