Gnome Shell: Touchpad right click (bottom right) area does not work

Bug #1759300 reported by Ben-Ja on 2018-03-27
126
This bug affects 19 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
gsettings-desktop-schemas (Ubuntu)
Undecided
Unassigned

Bug Description

The right (second) touchpad click does not work.
It ceased to work about three months ago.
ubuntu 18,04 aser ex2519

Jeremy Bicha (jbicha) wrote :

This was an intentional change. You can get the old behavior back with the GNOME Tweaks app.

See the Touchpad section in https://jeremy.bicha.net/2018/02/12/gnome-tweaks-3-28-progress-report-2/

By the way, this issue is also mentioned in
https://wiki.ubuntu.com/BionicBeaver/ReleaseNotes#Ubuntu_Desktop

affects: gnome-shell (Ubuntu) → gsettings-desktop-schemas (Ubuntu)
Changed in gsettings-desktop-schemas (Ubuntu):
status: New → Invalid
summary: - touchpad right click
+ Touchpad right click (bottom right) area does not work
summary: - Touchpad right click (bottom right) area does not work
+ Gnome Shell: Touchpad right click (bottom right) area does not work

This is viewed as a confusing regression by a portion of the userbase[0]. God knows it destroyed my workflow (and morning) when I updated to 18.04 from 16.04.

For some of us 'old farts' who never use macs and always relied on the "areas" behavior in both Linux and Windows it would be helpful to have been told that the behavior changed and how to change it back, or simply just asked, on installation, which option you want.

[0] https://askubuntu.com/questions/1028776/no-secondary-button-right-click-on-touchpad/1028857#1028857

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

I think we should improve this in 18.10 by moving the setting from gnome-tweaks into gnome-control-center. That way most users will actually find it, and be able to resolve the issue themselves.

Mike (mikebw) wrote :

I had GNOME (rather than Unity) as my default desktop before upgrading to 18.04, and I strongly believe that my settings should have been respected rather than overridden to the installation default. Whatever the merits of the choice of installation default, it seems clear error to impose it over a previously existing GNOME installation.

My touchpad has hardware left and right buttons, and it is my understanding that it should therefore not default to "finger" mode but should instead default to "area" mode. I was not able to get two-finger secondary click to work in "finger" mode at all. The laptop is an Acer V3-574 and the touchpad identifies in dmesg as follows:

hid-multitouch 0018:04F3:300B.0001: Ignoring the extra HID_DG_INPUTMODE
input: ELAN0501:00 04F3:300B Touchpad as /devices/pci0000:00/INT3432:00/i2c-0/i2c-ELAN0501:00/0018:04F3:300B.0001/input/input8
hid-multitouch 0018:04F3:300B.0001: input,hidraw0: I2C HID v1.00 Mouse [ELAN0501:00 04F3:300B] on i2c-ELAN0501:00

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Mike, I agree we need smarter defaults and have proposed that for 18.10 here: https://trello.com/c/i3JvebJ9

Misaki (myjunkmail311006) wrote :

Would it be possible to make 'area' mode the default if the touchpad doesn't support multi-finger input?

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Yes, that is mentioned in https://trello.com/c/i3JvebJ9

Javier (jbeluge) wrote :

I have an Acer Aspire 3 and Ubuntu 18.04, the touchpad works correctly according to the gnome configuration, that is, a finger anywhere is primary or left click, two fingers is secondary or right click and three fingers central click. However my notebook also has two physical buttons, left and right. The left behaves as it should, but the right behaves like left (that is, the two behave as a primary button).
Of course it is very comfortable behavior with the default configuration and no need to use physical buttons (in fact, I do not think that use in the future), but it is a small inconvenience that the right physical button behaves as left. Maybe a small correction is not difficult.
In ubuntu 16.04 both physical buttons worked as expected.
Anyway, I congratulate the developers for such a wonderful user experience!

Regards...
Javier Beluge

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Javier,

If your physical buttons (the ones that move independently of the touchpad, and not just painted on) are not behaving correctly then please log a bug with:

  ubuntu-bug libinput10

Randy (rscragun) wrote :

The claim that "You can get the old behavior back with the GNOME Tweaks app" is simply not true. You can toggle between the two menu methods (two-finger tap and bottom-right click), but I cannot get back the old behavior of being able to do BOTH. This is not asking people to choose between the Mac method and the Windows method; this is asking people to choose between the Mac method and some hobbled version of the Windows method.

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Randy,

It is true, but we have different definitions of "old".

By "old behaviour" we are referring to previous Gnome releases that also used libinput. And by "old behaviour" you are referring to much older releases of Ubuntu (Unity) that used the X synaptics touchpad driver instead of libinput.

You can get back to your desired much older behaviour by installing package 'xserver-xorg-input-synaptics'. You can then tweak it in great detail using the 'synclient' tool.

Once again, Gnome pushing down "features" tuned for Mac users that people with normal touchpads don't want and didn't ask for.

I came here from this article: https://medium.com/@pck/ubuntu-18-04-fix-for-right-click-not-working-touchpad-issues-40037ff249e1

Thank God it can still be disabled and reverted to the old behavior: https://itsfoss.com/fix-right-click-touchpad-ubuntu/

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

"tuned for Mac users" is incorrect, as is the term "normal touchpads" to refer to personal preference, as is the assertion that people didn't ask for the feature. ChromeOS laptops only support two-fingers to right click. And you will find the majority of modern Windows laptops also support two fingers to right click out of the box. Sometimes in addition to corner support, but read on...

If there is paint on the touchpad of some specific laptop model designating fake buttons, we can't detect that in software. Corner clicking is also a bad idea for usability because it forces the user to look at the touchpad in order to know which virtual button they are clicking. Using two fingers however does not require looking at the touchpad, only feeling that both fingers are on it.

That all said, a fix for the discoverability of the setting is planned for a future release: https://trello.com/c/i3JvebJ9 which will be enough to make everyone happy, regardless of the default setting.

Prior to the the version of gnome that ships with 18.04, both forms of
right-click worked out of the box. Sure, there are other trackpads that
don't have the area-based right click, so maybe it's not just "tuned for
Mac", but it is tuned for a pretty narrow set of hardware. Whether it was
intentional or not, the change felt like a regression and functionality
wise it still is, because you have to chose between the two behaviors, and
you can't have both. On my touchpad, at least, right-clicking with two
fingers is very unergonomic, because you have to be very precise with
finger spacing and timing. Too close, and you get a left-click, if you
don't hit the track pad fairly hard and at exactly the same time, it
scrolls instead of right-clicking. Apple tunes for this, and it works well
on their hardware, but Dell doesn't, and it doesn't.

It would be nice if we could have both behaviors enabled by default. Seems
like that would accommodate the most people. Especially just after 18.04
was released, I couldn't find any information on fixing this.

On Wed, Nov 21, 2018, 18:10 Daniel van Vugt <<email address hidden>
wrote:

> "tuned for Mac users" is incorrect, as is the term "normal touchpads" to
> refer to personal preference, as is the assertion that people didn't ask
> for the feature. ChromeOS laptops only support two-fingers to right
> click. And you will find the majority of modern Windows laptops also
> support two fingers to right click out of the box. Sometimes in addition
> to corner support, but read on...
>
> If there is paint on the touchpad of some specific laptop model
> designating fake buttons, we can't detect that in software. Corner
> clicking is also a bad idea for usability because it forces the user to
> look at the touchpad in order to know which virtual button they are
> clicking. Using two fingers however does not require looking at the
> touchpad, only feeling that both fingers are on it.
>
> That all said, a fix for the discoverability of the setting is planned
> for a future release: https://trello.com/c/i3JvebJ9 which will be enough
> to make everyone happy, regardless of the default setting.
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to a
> duplicate bug report (1761834).
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/1759300
>
> Title:
> Gnome Shell: Touchpad right click (bottom right) area does not work
>
> Status in gsettings-desktop-schemas package in Ubuntu:
> Invalid
>
> Bug description:
> The right (second) touchpad click does not work.
> It ceased to work about three months ago.
> ubuntu 18,04 aser ex2519
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
>
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/gsettings-desktop-schemas/+bug/1759300/+subscriptions
>

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

"pretty narrow set of hardware" is absolutely false. It is tuned for laptops that have clickpads which most of them these days, with only the exception of some Dell and HP "business" laptops. Everything else ships with clickpads that support 2 or more fingers (even including most Dell and HP laptops)

Regardless, you can go back to the old driver with the old dual behaviour:

  1. sudo apt install xserver-xorg-input-synaptics
  2. Only login to "Ubuntu" (Xorg sessions). Not "Ubuntu on Wayland".
  3. Tweak your personal preferences with the 'synclient' tool.
  4. Save your personal preferences as a command to run on login in 'gnome-session-properties'.

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Enhancement request logged upstream to make the old dual behaviour available again:

  https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME/gsettings-desktop-schemas/issues/3

Unfortunately the modes are mutually exclusive in the current GNOME design:

    <enum id='org.gnome.desktop.GDesktopTouchpadClickMethod'>
      <value nick='default' value='0'/>
      <value nick='none' value='1'/>
      <value nick='areas' value='2'/>
      <value nick='fingers' value='3'/>
    </enum>

so you can't have both 'areas' and 'fingers' simultaneously unless you use the workaround in comment #18.

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