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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

Erratic Scrolling Trackpad: PB 1.5/ 1.67 15"


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MichaelSullivan
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I was at the local apple store, and noticed that with the newest generation of PB (1.5/ 1.67) 15", the trackpad is erratic when you click on it. For instance, when you click on a link or whatnot, the cursor jumps a bit in one direction or the other. This is very annoying, often making you click on un-intended links. I was able to replicate this countless times on both a 15 and a 17" model.

Does anyone know of a possible driver update that might address this issue? Anyone else have this problem? (this occurs when you have the trackpad set to allow clicking).

Thanks in advance.
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meltbanana314
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Are you, by any chance - accidentally touching the trackpad with your finger and part of your hand/palm at the same time?
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donnation25

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meltbanana314
Are you, by any chance - accidentally touching the trackpad with your finger and part of your hand/palm at the same time?
I don't get the whole new trackpad thing for the powerbooks. Sidetrack works great with my 12" G4 powerbook.
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fasheezy

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelSullivan
I was at the local apple store, and noticed that with the newest generation of PB (1.5/ 1.67) 15", the trackpad is erratic when you click on it. For instance, when you click on a link or whatnot, the cursor jumps a bit in one direction or the other. This is very annoying, often making you click on un-intended links. I was able to replicate this countless times on both a 15 and a 17" model.

Does anyone know of a possible driver update that might address this issue? Anyone else have this problem? (this occurs when you have the trackpad set to allow clicking).

Thanks in advance.
i actually had this problem come up on my powerbook, but it only happened once in the 1.5 years i've owned my powerbook. if you are looking to purchase a new laptop, i personally wouldn't recommend a powerbook. during the 1.5 years i've had it, there have been so many problems with it. i hear the iBook is much more reliable.
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MichaelSullivan
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Well, I'm definately looking at the PB. The Ibook just isn't feasible for what I want. That said, no I'm not laying my palm on the trackpad while I click. I found this problem posted over at macNN as well, which validates that I'm not off base here. It seems this has everything to do with the newer trackpad vendor and/or drivers since it doesn't occur with non-scrolling trackpads.

Further, I've been using a laptop at home with only a trackpad (no external mouse at all) for 6 years, and haven't seen this. This is specific to Apple and the newer trackpads.
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warrenbert
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This is a frequently-discussed problem with new Powerbooks. I'd RMA it and get it repaired or replaced.
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Kokopelli
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I have also seen reports on macfixit on the problem. The short version is they suggest turning off the clicking features in the trackpad pane. The longer version:
http://www.macfixit.com/article.php?...50225005101508
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MichaelSullivan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenbert
This is a frequently-discussed problem with new Powerbooks. I'd RMA it and get it repaired or replaced.

uh oh... I'm looking to buy new. Hope I'm not buying a known problem.
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MichaelSullivan
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I think macfixit only displays the articles for a couple of days, so here is an excerpt:

"Erratic trackpads (#4): 2005 PowerBook G4 models
We continue to cover reports of erratic trackpad behavior on new (2005) PowerBook G4 computers. The most common complaint is an inconsistent issue where the mouse cursor will "jump" around the screen, apparently randomly. Several MacFixIt readers have noted that disabling the Clicking features in the Trackpad pane of Keyboard & Mouse preferences has proven to be a successful workaround. Reader Rich Snyder notes that installing an alternate trackpad driver, such as iScroll, has also helped:

"The symptoms i was seeing was that while typing, the cursor would randomly jump around the screen sometimes highlighting what I had just typed and the deleting it when I hit the next key. Very frustrating when you're typing a long response to a post on a forum and 'poof' its gone. To fix the erratic trackpad, I turned off Use trackpad for 'Clicking' and installed iScroll2. My iBook is now again fun to use. I never really used the trackpad for clicking. As a plus, iScroll2 gives the two finger trackpad functionality of the new powerbooks."

Confirmation of directional speed differences Yesterday we covered a reader report that the trackpad on the new PowerBooks -- which is made by a different vendor than past PowerBook and iBook trackpads -- seems to have a faster horizontal tracking speed than vertical. We've since received follow-ups from a number of readers confirming this behavior. Reader LLD notes:

"I can absolutely confirm that my new PowerBook trackpad behaves just like Chris [from yesterday's article] describes: moving my finger a certain distance on the trackpad horizontally results in a much faster track on the screen compared to moving the same distance vertically on the trackpad. Just something to get used to. No complaints otherwise!"
"
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MichaelSullivan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kokopelli
I have also seen reports on macfixit on the problem. The short version is they suggest turning off the clicking features in the trackpad pane. The longer version:
http://www.macfixit.com/article.php?...50225005101508
Well, upon closer inspection this wont work, since clicking with the trackpad is exactly what I want to do (and whats causing the problem)...
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Kokopelli
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Well at least you know you are not alone. neye:

It seems to be a general problem more than a hardware failure. I think your best bet would be to complain to Apple and hope they update the drivers to resolve the issue. Sorry I can't be of more help. It does not look like sidetrack is going to be ported to the new PBs any time soon either.
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