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How To Disable Touchpad While Typing In Ubuntu Using Syndaemon

Disable Touchpad While Typing In Ubuntu Using Syndaemon

By sk
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A while ago, we discussed a few different ways to automatically disable Touchpad while typing in Ubuntu and its variants. Today, we will see yet another way to do it with Syndaemon in Ubuntu-like systems. Syndaemon is command line program that monitors the keyboard activity and disables the Touchpad when the keyboard is being used. Since the touchpad is disabled, the mouse pointer will not randomly jump or move all over the screen when you accidentally place the palm of your hand on the touchpad. Syndaemon helps you to avoid the accidental touch of your palm which messes up with the writing whenever you type something important. Please note that it won't permanently disable the Touchpad altogether, but only when you type.

Install Syndaemon On Ubuntu

Syndaemon is installed as part of the xserver-xorg-input-synaptics package on Ubuntu. To install it on Ubuntu, just run:

$ sudo apt install xserver-xorg-input-synaptics

On latest Ubuntu 18.04 LTS version, I couldn't install "xserver-xorg-input-synaptics" package due to dependency problem.

Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
Some packages could not be installed. This may mean that you have
requested an impossible situation or if you are using the unstable
distribution that some required packages have not yet been created
or been moved out of Incoming.
The following information may help to resolve the situation:

The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 xserver-xorg-input-synaptics : Depends: xserver-xorg-core (>= 2:1.18.99.901)
E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.

In that case, install the following package instead:

$ sudo apt install xserver-xorg-input-synaptics-hwe-18.04

Disable Touchpad While Typing In Ubuntu Using Syndaemon

To automatically disable the Touchpad while you typing on your Keyboard, just run the following command:

$ syndaemon -i 1 -t -K -R -d

Let us break down the above command and see what each argument does.

  • -i : Defines how many seconds to wait after the last key press before enabling the touchpad. In my case, I have set 1 second. The default value is 2.0 seconds.
  • - t : Only disable tapping and scrolling functions, not mouse movements, in response to keyboard activity.
  • -K : ignore Modifier+Key combos.
  • -R : Use the XRecord extension for detecting keyboard activity instead of polling the keyboard state.
  • -d : Start syndaemon as a daemon in the background.

Please note that this setting will not persist across system reboots. You have to manually start this command every time to disable the touchpad. To avoid this, you can make it to start automatically on login as explained in the following section.

Autostart Syndaemon on system boot

To enable Syndaemon to automatically start on every system reboot, simply add the Syndaemon command in your ~/.bashrc or ~/.profile file.

$ nano ~/.bashrc

Or,

$ nano ~/.profile

Add the command:

syndaemon -i 1 -t -K -R -d

Save and close the file.

Type the following command to take effect the changes.

$ source ~/.bashrc

Or,

$ source ~/.profile

Check Syndaemon is running or not with command:

$ ps aux | grep syndaemon
ostechnix 14586 0.0 0.0 21868 1108 pts/0 S+ 16:57 0:00 grep --color=auto syndaemon

For more details, refer man pages.

$ man syndaemon

Related read:


Hope this helps.

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4 comments

Daniel March 12, 2020 - 9:57 pm

Great tip! I just applied it to my “Linux Mint 19.3 Tricia base: Ubuntu 18.04 bionic “.
A ‘n’ missed in your first command: $ sudo apt install xserver-xorg-iput-synaptics (input)
Thank you very much. Greetings from Peru.

Reply
sk March 13, 2020 - 11:54 am

Good catch. Thank you, Daniel. Fixed it.

Reply
Kharisma Ananda November 10, 2020 - 2:35 pm

Yes it works! was looking for this thank you. I have elantech touhpad using xserver-xorg-iput-synaptics, the sensitivity is good as in Ms Windows, but always touched (clicked) by palm while typing, and i found this solution.
btw, is there an exact Elantech touchpad driver for Linux? because i find only Synaptics.

Reply
sk November 10, 2020 - 8:07 pm

No idea about Elantech touchpad. Sorry.

Reply

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