Kill Mac OS X Mouse Acceleration from the command line

Jun 2, 2010 - 38 Comments

You might be asking yourself, what’s mouse acceleration? Essentially mouse acceleration is an algorithm that is deployed in an attempt to make mouse movements feel “natural”.  For many PC users, when you first use a Mac, it becomes quite obvious that the mouse is behaving very differently.  It will feel sluggish, unpredictable and unresponsive (to varying degrees depending on the user).  This type of acceleration “curve” (as they call it) is useful when using a trackpad device, but very problematic when using a “high performance” mouse such as a logitech gaming mouse.  I was recently reminded of how problematic the OS X acceleration curve can be while playing the recently released (for the mac) Half-Life 2.  Trying to navigate a first person shooter while mouse acceleration is enabled is a nightmare!

Rather than paying for a shareware application that does the same thing, try out this free command line utility.

In your terminal:
macpro:~ user$ curl -O http://ktwit.net/code/killmouseaccel
macpro:~ user$ chmod +x killmouseaccel
macpro:~ user$ ./killmouseaccel mouse

Voila. You have freed your cursor from the chains of a bad acceleration curve! If you would like to return to the old and sluggish mouse: open your system preferences, go to the mouse section and click on the “Tracking” slider. If you aren’t convinced it’s back to normal, just reboot.

You can read more about mouse acceleration including some other ways to adjust it.

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Posted by: chrisk in Command Line, Games, Mac OS X, Tips & Tricks, Utilities

38 Comments

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  1. 911 says:

    mouse acceleration is the worst thing ever.. SO annoying. my computer did it when i first got it, but for some reason it doesnt anymore? i’m not sure what i did differntly. i figured they removed it with snow leopard or something.

    good tips to know though, i honestly feel bad for anyone who puts up with it and doesn’t realise there is a fix. makes macs look bad.

  2. Ryan says:

    The commands don’t work, the first one runs but here are the results for the second:

    iMac:~ user$ chmod +x killmouseaccell
    chmod: killmouseaccell: No such file or directory
    iMac:~ user$ ./killmouseaccell mouse
    -bash: ./killmouseaccell: No such file or directory

  3. xr1z says:

    Remove the last “l” of “killmouseaccell” in the last two commands. Then it works.

    Is there a way to lower the mouse sensitivity?

  4. chrisk says:

    sorry about that guys! the example commands had an extra l. I have fixed the post

  5. Dave says:

    I’m still getting “No such file or directory” on the 2nd and 3rd commands after using “killmouseaccel” what’s going on?

  6. Dave says:

    The curl command just gets the code and spams it to the console output, it doesn’t put it in a file. The command needs to be edited to:
    curl -0 http://ktwit.net/code/killmouseaccel > killmouseaccel

    Then you should be able to run the next 2 commands.

  7. Shaker64 says:

    OMG, OMG, OMG !!!

    Is this realy working 100% ? I mean, the mouse behaves like a normal in windows ? If so, I may buy a mac now… finaly! I’ve been waiting like 6 years for that…

  8. McPit says:

    killmouseaccel also seems to set the mouse speed to “rather fast”…
    Then if you try to slow down the mouse speed a bit, it re-enables the acceleration right away…
    Any way to get both? (no accel at all AND average mouse speed..?)
    Thanks !

  9. Vincent Tobiaz says:

    yea i agree with the above post, seems to me it’s impossible to get those right, which makes starcraft 2 unplayable

  10. Vin says:

    ah – download usb overdrive

    that worked

  11. […] Disable Mac OS X mouse acceleration via the command line – this easy to use script will completely disable mouse acceleration in Mac OS X. Settings are reversible by rebooting the machine. This is a favorite for Windows gamers. […]

  12. s710 says:

    hi, the killmouseaccel program is working really great. however it does not work with starcraft 2. the mouse settings will reset once starcraft 2 starts. also tabbing out of starcraft 2, executing killmouseaccel again while starcraft 2 is running, then tab back into the game wont help. the settings will reset as soon as the starcraft 2 window gets the focus.

    i know this might be a stacraft 2 issue, but does someone know a workaround for this?

  13. Herman says:

    Starcraft 2 disables this function. Do anyone know how to fix this?

    Herman

  14. […] So the answer is this – thanks to http://osxdaily.com/2010/06/02/kill-os-x-mouse-acceleration-from-the-command-line/ […]

  15. Matt says:

    If you’re using a third party mouse it’s easy enough to slow down the speed after making this change if that mouse’s prefs have the right settings. If you have a Logitech mouse, open Logitech Control Centre from Sys Prefs and change the Tracking Speed Multiplier under the General tab to be lower than 1. I’ve set this to 1/2 and now very happy with tracking speed and NO MORE ACCELERATION!! :)

  16. Lars says:

    Matt: What kind of mouse do you use? Will any Logitech mouse with its software do the trick?

  17. ZeroFusion says:

    Is there a way to reduce the speed of the mouse after killing the acceleration? My mouse is stuck on super fast. Makes it impossible to accurately control at this speed.

  18. IronGumby says:

    Oh my gosh! I just tried replacing “mouse” with “trackpad” and it kills the accel for that, too! Sweet! Is there a script to get rid of the movement delay upon click-and-dragging so that it is immediate? (for the trackpad) Thanks for this!

  19. Leech says:

    I use your method, but I don’t like the result. How to put the acceleration back? =)))

  20. Nick says:

    I’ve recently upgraded to a gaming mouse in a venture into competitive TF2 and I’ve since disabled all mouse acceleration so this makes my Mac much nicer to use.

  21. kitpos says:

    This could be a incredibly bad thought by Overdrive. It sounds like we’ll have however yet another format for libraries to choose from. So what I see is that libraries will have less selection as it has to purchase ePub, audio, & now Kindle. So that is not going to be good overall for patrons. I for one do not want to see a book I want in Kindle only when there is an ePub version just because someone with a Kindle requested it that way. The way things work now is fine. They way they could work won’t be fine. Far from it. What this is going to do is possibly cut the amount of new eBooks at libraries in half.

  22. Djinn says:

    This works but it is disabled once i play SC2, as someone wrote above.

  23. […] the Mouse acceleration was driving me CRAZY. So after much googling I found a terminal script that actually works. You can save your time experimenting with third party software and just use this one. The only […]

  24. Laine says:

    Running the script results in a marked improvement for my use of the Magic Mouse, not so much so for my use of the Magic Trackpad. While the speed of the mouse remains high after the custom acceleration settings are negated, which suits my general preference, the trackpad speed ends up being pretty slow, which I don’t like. What is needed, of course, is the ability to independently adjust the acceleration as well as the speed over a range of values. I’ve been able to successfully use this feature of Steermouse for previous Apple mouse products (Magic Mouse isn’t currently supported by Steermouse), and I’ve used Mouse Acceleration with some some success, although the adjustment values for the mouse, which allow inverting adjustment between acceleration and speed, result in a mouse speed that’s so fast, I can only use its “-0.0″ setting for the mouse. The trackpad’s speed doesn’t appear to be very adjustable in the inverted mode. I’m planning to try USB Overdrive, although its name would seem to indicate that it might not be appropriate for mice and trackpads connected through Bluetooth.

  25. kellogs says:

    worked, thanks

  26. Ardalan says:

    thanks that works.

    is there any way do do the same thing for the mousewheel?
    to turn off the scrolling speed curve or what ever its called.

  27. Lauri Ranta says:

    The original source code was posted in http://forums3.armagetronad.net/viewtopic.php?p=196564#p196564. An Xcode project version can be downloaded from https://github.com/docwhat/killmouseaccel.

    Note that the utility has to be run again every time after logging in. The changes are also undone if the tracking speed is changed in System Preferences. If you want to use a different tracking speed (the default speed was pretty slow), you have to change it in the source code.

  28. Jp says:

    Guess mac users are not gamers :p

  29. Chris says:

    This just makes my mouse feel out of control…

  30. zee says:

    none of them work, they are all just unknown commands, cant find a single fix that works for mouse accel, ive been looking forever and i want it GONE

  31. seneca menard says:

    I’ve tried FOUR different apps to get rid of mouse acceleration on the mac and NONE of them “actually work”.

    For example, with this one, it appears to remove acceleration if you’re strafing the mouse only to the left and right or only up and down, BUT if you strafe diagonally, it completely breaks. Just try it. wiggle the mouse at a 45 degree angle on the screen back and forth over a distance of 2 inches on the desk over and over, first do it slowly and then do it quickly. You’ll find that if you do it slowly, the mouse only covers a couple of pixels. If you do it quickly, you’ll find the mouse covers the entire screen!

    The same thing is visible if you spin the mouse cursor in a circle instead of a straight line. So yes, proof that this app fails just like all the others.

  32. ak says:

    It didn’t change any gaming experience but the general mouse/trackpad usage is very sluggish now. So, how do I completely undo whatever change this script/command made?

  33. Charlesky says:

    is there a way to make the trackpad with mouseaccel and the mouse without? best of both world? :p

  34. Dan says:

    Is there a way to automatically run these commands on boot?

  35. nnm says:

    Thank you!!

    What about the mouse wheel pls?

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