How to turn off / Disable your touchpad while typing in linux

Jan 4th, 2010 | By | Category: Linux / Freebsd

So after having the edge of my hand touch my touchpad and mess up an email for the upteenth time today I went around and did some research to see if there was a quick shortcut key or something I could press to turn the bloody thing off and then on again when I was done typing.  Well let me tell you I found something so much better!  There’s a command in shell that will automatically disable the touchpad if you’ve been typing for a set amount of time and then turn it back on automatically when you’re done..  Genius!  Genius I say!!  But what is this command you ask?  How do you enable it to save yourself endless frustration?  Well I’m glad you asked because I was just about to explain it:

The program is syndaemon and it can be enabled in shell by typing: syndaemon -i 3 -d


  • -i parameter defines number of seconds to wait after keyboard is used – ( 3 seconds suites me. )
  • -d  parameter is used for running syndaemon in background mode ( as a daemon ).

If above command throws some error then you are using other than 9.04 release. To get it working type in terminal,

chmod +x syndaemon
sudo mv syndaemon /usr/bin/
syndaemon -i 3 -d

Again type the syndaemon command in terminal, it shouldn`t give any error messages.

Above command has to be executed each time machine is rebooted. To execute above command automatically we can create a tiny bash script and add it to startup items.

1. Create a new file somewhere ( My BSD habits puts files like this in /usr/local/etc/rc.d/ but that’s just me ) and copy paste following into it.

syndaemon -i 2.5 -d

2. To add above script to startup items, go to System > Preferences > Startup Applicaitons >  Add. In new  pop-up box name it something meaningful and type in the path and command.. After that click “Add”.

There you go, done like dinner 🙂   Enjoy not having the hell of your cursor selecting 2 paragraphs of text and typing over it before you know what’s going on!

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