Quick Tip #103: Simple Tweaks to Fix a Touchy Touchpad

by Team Sony 06/17/2011


Editor’s Note: Premium Services Technicians are here to help and in this ongoing series, they’ll offer me their favorite tips and provide answers to some of the most common service related questions they hear at both the call center and in Sony Stores.

I actually sat down to write on another tip for this post when a few accidental bumps of my touchpad changed my mind about today’s topic. There’s nothing more annoying than a temperamental touchpad.  Accidentally tapping your touchpad while typing can scatter your thoughts all over the word doc or comment box you’re working in – leaving you with the ominous task of putting all the pieces back together as you had originally intended.

So in today’s quick tip, I’ve compiled a simple change to your touchpad’s settings that can go a long way in making your life a lot less frustrating – and your touchpad a lot less touchy.

UPDATE 1: (Step-by-step instructions for VAIO models using the Synaptics Touchpad Driver)

  1. In Windows 7 click Start then Control Panel
  2. Within the Control Panel click Hardware and Sound
  3. In the window that appears, under the “Devices and Printers” catagory, select Mouse
  4. In the setting window that appears, click the Device Settings tab
  5. From the Device Settings tab, click the Settings button that appears halfway down
  6. In the new window that appears, examine the index of settings that appears in the left panel and expand the option labeled Pointing
  7. Click Touch Sensitivity (A)
  8. Reduce the touch sensitivity setting by moving the slide to the right, towards the Heavy Touch label.
    • Experiment with different levels of sensitivity until you find one suited for to your needs and how you type
  9. You can also reduce touch sensitivity by adjusting the Palm Check (A) setting towards Maximum (B)
    • This feature guards against operating the touch pad with your palm, as you might do while typing
    • This option will increase or decrease this feature’s ability to detect when you palm is touching the touch pad (vs. your finger)

*If the Device Settings tab is missing from your mouse settings window, you’ll need to re-install the touch pad driver from eSupport here.

Have a better tip?  Be sure to share yours in the comment section below.

UPDATE 2: After reading many of your comments, I realized I forgot to include step-by-step instructions for the alternate touchpad driver used on many other VAIO models.  You can find instructions below.  I hope this helps!  Please be sure to leave any additional feedback or follow up questions below.

(Step-by-step instructions for VAIO models using the Alps Pointing Device Driver)

  1. In Windows 7 click Start then Control Panel
  2. Within the Control Panel click Hardware and Sound
  3. In the window that appears, under the “Devices and Printers” catagory, select Mouse
  4. In the setting window that appears, click the Tapping tab
  5. From the Tapping tab, select Tap off when typing (A) and move the Delay after last key is hit sliderall the way to the right towards Long (B)
    • Note: if you prefer, you could also turn off the tapping feature of the touchpad; relegating the “click” function of the touchpad to just the left and right buttons hardware buttons found directly below the touchpad.
    • To do this, simply “deselect” the Tapping option (C) found at the top left-hand corner of the Tapping Tab then click Apply
  6. You can also reduce touch sensitivity by enabling the Palm Detection feature (similar to the Palm Check setting describe above)
    • This feature guards against operating the touch pad with your palm, as you might do while typing
    • To toggle on or off, navigate to the Palm and Typing tab within the same Mouse Properties window
    • Select or deselect the Enable palm rejection setting (A)
  7. You can also experiment with Invalidating Multi-touch Gestures While Typing and Invalidating Mouse Cursor Movement While Typing settings (B).
    • These settings can be found within the same tab outlined in Line 6



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Add Comment

  1. Anonymous wrote: June 27, 2011 5:25pm

    Thank you so much. After just 2 weeks I put heavy tape over the scroll areas. However, I was constantly reversing the automatic resizing. I prefer a “dumb” touch pad. I turned all the fancy functions off. Now I can remove the tape.

  2. Anonymous wrote: June 27, 2011 7:02pm

    i do not have the Tapping tab in my mouse

  3. Anonymous wrote: June 28, 2011 9:03am

    In the Control Panel there’s no “Hardware and Sound” icon or option. None of these instructions can be followed.
    My touch pad is unbearable and almost impossible to use.
    Please help.

  4. Anonymous wrote: June 28, 2011 3:04pm

    This is a fabulous tool. I loved being able to make my keyboard just a touch less sensitive and I probably would never have gone that far into all the settings. Thanks so much.
    Keep these clues coming. It makes this wonderful machine even better! Needless to say..I am loving this little thing!


    Victoria Vandamm

  5. Anonymous wrote: June 29, 2011 12:16pm

    I don’t have trouble with touch sensitivity when I’m typing. But when I’m using the mouse navigating around websites, the view will spontaneously change, most times shrinking significantly. I have to manually reset the view to 100%. I’ve tried my own troubleshooting to no avail. Why does this happen?? How can I get it to stop???

  6. Anonymous wrote: June 29, 2011 5:26pm

    Nice one Editor! This has been exasperating when I am typing my reports…thank you

  7. Anonymous wrote: June 30, 2011 4:53am

    I would appreciate info on how to do this in Windows 10.

  8. Anonymous wrote: June 30, 2011 6:01am

    I can’t thank you enough for this information! I have played around on my own trying to eliminate the “jump” from the section I was entering data in to another section I had completed! Hopefully this fix will enable me not to have to slow down and double check where my text is being entered!!! Puzzle solved!

  9. Anonymous wrote: June 30, 2011 1:50pm

    Going through the Quick Tip 103–when I am in step 7 the screen doesn’t show what’s on the instruction list for ‘Pointing’–my screen reads “You can use these freatures to personalize cursor behavior and TouchPad sensitivity.
    Then :The pointing settings pages enable you to specify how the cursor responds to your pointing and selection actions.
    How do I get to the screen shown in 7?

  10. pam5924 wrote: July 1, 2011 11:01am

    Any advice for a Sony Vaio laptop PCG81115L with a touchy touchpad?

  11. Anonymous wrote: July 1, 2011 11:59am

    How do you lock your touchpad on your laptop?
    is there a shortcut?

  12. Anonymous wrote: July 1, 2011 2:26pm

    I gave up, bought a wireless keypad and a wireless mouse.

  13. Anonymous wrote: July 2, 2011 5:30am

    SO happy you posted this ‘quick tip’- thank you.Don’t seem to have the ‘Palm and Typing’ tab in option#2- any other way to access this info or correct the prob? Thanks.

  14. Anonymous wrote: July 2, 2011 5:32am

    Ooops! Forgot to leave email address- I asked the question about not having the ‘Palm and Typing’ tab…..

  15. Anonymous wrote: July 3, 2011 12:35pm

    I have a four mounth old Vaio notebook and none of these options fare available for the touch pad.

  16. Anonymous wrote: July 4, 2011 6:36pm

    Good stuff! Thank you. The defaults aren’t too bad however the suggested tweaks should be helpful.

  17. Anonymous wrote: July 5, 2011 9:47pm

    My Control Panel does not have “Hardware and Sound”. I looked on the “Mouse” heading but did not find anything that looked like your instructions. Please give another suggestion for adjusting the palm touch. It really drives me crazy!

  18. Anonymous wrote: July 6, 2011 8:46am

    I don’t get those screens. :-( My only tabs are general, drivers and details.

  19. Anonymous wrote: July 6, 2011 9:02am

    You need one additional screen shot to make your instructions clear. From reading here, I went to
    - control panel
    - hardware & sound
    - device & printers
    - then picked mouse…but that didn’t work.

    …I didn’t have those screenshots you showed.

    What worked was instead to go to “Control PanelHardware and Sound.” ***DO NOT CLICK ON DEVICES AND PRINTERS.*** Stay at the higher level.

    You should see a whole list of “hardware and sound” options, the first section is labeled DEVICES AND PRINTERS. UNDER that header, you will find “MOUSE” click that and go from there.

    I wish I could include the screen shot. If they add that, your frustrations will be over!


    1. Michael wrote: July 6, 2011 4:42pm

      Hi Adrianne – great advice. I added the screenshot you requested. Please see above. Thanks for reading!

  20. Anonymous wrote: July 7, 2011 2:57am

    I followed the instructions, but when I click on mouse under hardware and sound I get an error message that the pointing software is not installed! So when I go to the mouse info I cannot do anything, the only options are Buttons, Pointers, Pointer Options, Hardware and Device Settings. Can someone please tell me how to fix this so I can do the changes from above? Thanks!

  21. Anonymous wrote: July 10, 2011 4:38am

    The tapping doesn’t work at all on this alps driven moudr pad. There is no palm detection mentioned on the mouse properties window. I am about to call repair

  22. Anonymous wrote: July 10, 2011 5:55am

    I have no expansion box when I click on Pointing (after Device Settings and Settings). Therefore, following these directions I never reach the point of being able to adjust touch sensitivity. Any advice?

    1. Andy wrote: February 4, 2013 2:18pm

      Seems like Michael finally gave up on repeating the same old thing! Unfortunately his initial and updated instructions do not appear to work for many of the VAIO owners above…..just like they don’t work for mine either!! Going through ‘Control Panel’ etc only gives me the ‘adjust pointer speed’ option and has no ‘Tapping’ tab. Any ideas anyone?

  23. Anonymous wrote: July 10, 2011 8:12am

    I can’t find the Palm Sensitivity settings on my new F Series. Would you please help.

  24. Cydney Butler wrote: July 11, 2011 6:36am

    This was the first one I read, and it was so amazingly helpful, I will definitely start paying attention to this more :) Thanks!

  25. Anonymous wrote: July 12, 2011 9:32am

    Very frustrating. This article identifies exactly the problem I’ve been having with my new Sony Vaio, but the description of the control panel screens in the article does not match what I find when I try to follow these instructions.

  26. Anonymous wrote: July 13, 2011 4:12pm

    I have an Alps Pointing Device, but there is no Palm Sensitivity or Typing tab on it. Under Tapping, I have the Typing option of “Tap off when Typing, but there is no Palm Check or Sensitivity bar. Would you please help me to reduce my way to sensitive Touch Pad that someone clicks on things I haven’t clicked on.
    Thank you

  27. Anonymous wrote: July 14, 2011 12:59pm

    The screen for my mouse settings isn’t the same as the one that you use here. I have the Alps pointing device for Vaio but I don’t have a multi touch gestures tab or palm and typing tab. what should I do?

  28. Anonymous wrote: July 26, 2011 10:46am

    I don’t have a “Palm and Typing” tab, so how do I, so how do I enable Palm Rejection setting?

  29. Anonymous wrote: July 26, 2011 10:49am

    I don’t have a “palm and Typing” tab, so what should I do to “Enable Palm Rejection” setting?

  30. Anonymous wrote: July 29, 2011 7:29pm

    Following the instructions above, I determined that I needed to follow update 2. However, when I reach the “Tapping” tab, I do not have any box where I can select or deselect “Tap off when typing.” The only option that appears is “invalidates tapping in the corner.”

    Thank you

  31. Anonymous wrote: August 4, 2011 6:57pm

    The best fix for a touch touch-pad is to buy a wireless USB mouse I did and never have to worry about accidentally tapping while typing, I simply turn off my tap settings and use my USB mouse.

  32. Anonymous wrote: July 7, 2012 1:16am

    My touchpad is working perfectly fine in the normal Windows operations. But when I use the Quick Web Access, without Windows running – the touchpad is VERY sensitive and all over the place. Is there any way to adjust the settings specifically for the Quick Web Access mode? I have looked everywhere and cannot find an answer to this.

    Please e-mail me back as I am not sure if I will be able to stumble across this page again, thank you!


    1. Kathleen wrote: July 9, 2012 11:34am

      Hi Steve, I’ve passed your question along to our support team. They should be getting back to you shortly. Thanks for your inquiry!

  33. Anonymous wrote: October 8, 2012 2:22pm

    great if using windows 7, but what about Vista??

    1. Kathleen wrote: October 10, 2012 12:15pm

      Thanks for your comment! I’ll send your question along to our support team. They’ll reach out shortly to help you out.

  34. Anonymous wrote: November 2, 2012 8:22am

    I too, have Vista, and this problem is really frustrating me. Can you please help?

    1. Kathleen wrote: November 2, 2012 2:26pm

      That’s no fun. I’ll send your contact info along to our support team. They should be reaching out shortly to assist. Thanks for your comment!

  35. Anonymous wrote: November 14, 2012 3:34pm

    I don’t even have an Alps Driver nor the “tapping tab” in mouse settings, but my touchpad is still disabled when I type. (Vaio S series on Windows 8, with Synaptics drivers.) Can you tell me what changes I need to make in the Registry to disable this?

  36. Anonymous wrote: December 2, 2012 8:19am

    I have the same problem, no tapping tab. I just have the basic mouse tabs. I have uninstalled the driver and then the plug and play installs the correct driver and gets me to restart. After the restart I see all the tabs as shown above in this article but as soon as the computer comes back on, I get prompted to restart again as the mouse driver has been reinstalled and if I do resart, I lose all the extra touchpad tabs again.

    1. Kathleen wrote: December 3, 2012 10:42am

      How strange. I’ve passed your info along to our support team, they should be reaching out shortly to help you. Thanks for your comment!

  37. Anonymous wrote: December 9, 2012 2:13pm

    the only problem that i have is that when i went to the mouse options, it doesn’t have the multi gesture for the mousepad. it used to have, but somehow it is not there anymore. is there anyway to turn it back on? right the mousepad is just a normal mouse where it cannot scroll up and down, and zoom in or out.

    1. Kathleen wrote: December 10, 2012 2:32pm

      Hi there, thanks for your question. I’ve passed your info to our support team. They should be reaching out shortly to help you.

      1. Paul wrote: January 12, 2013 11:03am

        You keep saying you will pass on to the support team, but that doesn’t help the rest of us. I worked with the support team and they also could not solve the problem. I have had my Sony for about 9 months and I hate it. Worst purchasing decision I have ever made. All around the touchpad and the poor support.

  38. L wrote: December 28, 2012 2:54pm

    Is there a way to make these changes in a laptop using Windows 8? I just got a new S Series, and I love it except for the touchpad problems.

  39. Pete wrote: January 4, 2013 2:59am

    My SZ71MN/B with Vista does not allow me to change any tapping or similar settings – there’s just no dialog for that. The eSupport system doesn’t even recognise the model number . . . is there anything I can do, apart from turning the touch pad off altogether?

  40. Paul wrote: January 15, 2013 2:44pm

    I have a Sony Vaio vpcsa4fmy. I would like to use my touchpad, but the cursor keeps jumping around and it is a disaster. I have the latest driver for the ALPS touchpad, but there are no visible settings for things like tapping. My properties do not look like the properties described above. I tried to troubleshoot with the helpdesk, but it did not fix the problem. What do I do now?

    1. maura wrote: January 20, 2013 11:54am

      How did you even contact support? I also feel $800 poorer and without a computer, this is horrible

  41. Randy Carpenter wrote: January 21, 2013 2:09pm

    PLEASE tell me how to disable the touchpad on my SVS 1311. Nothing written above works. I’m ready to throw this thing out. When i go into the control panel-hardware and sound- mouse, there is no tab for the touchpad.

  42. Kathy Bradford wrote: January 23, 2013 8:22pm

    Same problems as most others–my touchpad pointer jumps all over the screen when I am typing. I think I have updated all possible updates. My “hardware and sound” topic in control panel does not offer me anything at all about the touchpad, only about pointer speed etc. I have PCG 61112L Vaio laptop running Win 7 sp1. HELP HELP HELP

  43. Avaleen Nycz wrote: February 19, 2013 1:30pm

    How do I disable the mouse pad on my Sony Vio. I have windows 8 -35

  44. Roxy wrote: February 22, 2013 11:06am

    I think my touchpad options/ware had been removed completely. I went through the same headache; control panel hardware and sounds but when I clicked on the mouse option there was nothing for touch pad so I played with the computer and this is what I did my computer choose look for the windows folder icon click on go down to the drivers icon click on the exe icon folder go to pointing driver then go to setup. Exe follow prompts; this reinstalled my pointing driver anew; this should work restart computer and look in the icons notification menu it should be there. Keep in mind after doing all that your going to get the touch pad menu along with options for adjustments to the mouse

  45. Latona wrote: February 23, 2013 11:59am

    Thanks for the tips. Pls how can I reduce the sensitivity of my Sony Vaio E series with Windows 8 touch pad? It is unbearably annoying in that is too sensitive when using it. Pls help.

  46. chris Reuter wrote: February 26, 2013 8:37am

    I bought the Sony F series brand new and my touchpad has never worked correctly. I use annother mouse and just deal with it. Not sure why all the “cures” do not match my hardware. I run Win 7 pro 64 and none of the control panel tips match my control panel.

    1. Chris wrote: February 26, 2013 8:39am

      All i want to do is dissable the touchpad and after hours, days, weeks, months I still cannot dissable it.

  47. shippo7 wrote: March 16, 2013 2:53am

    I found the solution of the touchpad setting disappear in the control panel. You have to visit sony laptop support websides, go to your driver download webpage of your laptop model, and then install the touchpad driver. After you install the driver, you can found the touchpad setting in the control panel “mouse” setting. It can helps you to fix touchpad tapping problem.

  48. sumit wrote: April 17, 2013 12:15am

    i too have the erratic cursor movement problem in my vaio laptop. It has Alps Pointing Device whose drivers are apparently updated. yet not able to find a solution.

    For those people who are simply looking to disable their touchpad, Fn +F1 toggles enabling/disabling the touchpad.

    1. Sony Support USA wrote: April 17, 2013 2:25pm

      Hello sumit, I apologize you’re experiencing difficulty with your VAIO. What model do you have? Also where are you located? Your email address indicates that you may be in India. If you are not in the U.S. please contact Sony in your country/region. You may find their contact information via;

      Thanks, Scott Fuentes
      Sony Support USA

  49. FV wrote: May 5, 2013 11:21pm

    Thank you so much!!

  50. Solvy wrote: May 8, 2013 6:23am

    Ha! I complained about this twitchy touchpad to our IT man, and he took the computer in and reinnstalled the whole thing. Since our school bought a whole bunch of the same computers, almost everyone has the same problem, and noone seems to have a solution. Now… being a woman, how am I going to make our IT man take me seriously when I say he was wrong all along, and the solution is really simple?:) And why on earth do they make computers with touchpad settings that make you want to smash your new computer?

    Anyway, thank you very much!!!


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