Mouse Problem?

It was impossible to select text by the ‘left-click and drag’ act on my computer-mouse, one fine morning. Even the single left click to select a file or folder wasn’t working. I wondered if it was due to some trouble in the desktop computer (i7 water cooled processor, Intel extreme motherboard), which I had myself assembled a year ago and which was working well. Sometimes, the best way to check the health of a computer peripheral is to try it with another computer. So, I disconnected the mouse and plugged it to my Dell laptop and the same problem with selecting files and text appeared. That confirmed the defect was not with the computer but the mouse. However, it was a bit puzzling it became so in just a year and a half, the previous mouses working for many years without a hitch. Do optical mouses have shorter life span than the ball mouses I was using before? Fortunately, there is probably no computer related problem that hasn’t a solution on the net. I found many fixes there for the present problem but they were all suggesting tweaking the operating system (software) of the computer. There was at last one that was about solving it by fixing the mouse hardware: some one had blasted compressor air into the mouse button’s edges and the trouble ended. I gave a milder treatment with my cycle foot pump and it didn’t work. Before visiting a bike shop for a blast from a compressor, it seemed prudent to look inside the mouse.
I loosened the lone screw under the mouse and away came its casing cover. Inside, where the left click would be landing, there was a tiny microswitch. Placing the mouse on its pad, I moved the cursor over some text and then pressing the microswitch with a pen I dragged the cursor over the text and bingo! I was able to select text smoothly. Apparently the switch had clogged with dust or the casing cover was loose. I pressed the microswitch a few times, fixed back the cover and fastened it tight. The mouse became as good as it was before.
Had a satisfying feeling at saving the mouse from landing on a scrap heap.

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One thought on “Mouse Problem?

  1. Ravi February 6, 2015 at 8:13 am Reply

    Good job; you fixed it.
    Here is a funny bit sent out by IBM years back. (Old style mouse)
    Abstract: Mouse Balls Available as FRU (Field Replacement Unit)

    Mouse balls are now available as FRU. Therefore, if a mouse fails to operate or should it perform erratically, it may need a ball replacement. Because of the delicate nature of this procedure, replacement of mouse balls should only be attempted by properly trained personnel.

    Before proceeding, determine the type of mouse balls by examining the underside of the mouse. Domestic balls will be larger and harder than foreign balls. Ball removal procedures differ depending upon manufacturer of the mouse. Foreign balls can be replaced using the pop-off method. Domestic balls are replaced using the twist-off method. Mouse balls are not usually static sensitive. However, excessive handling can result in sudden discharge. Upon completion of ball replacement, the mouse may be used immediately.

    It is recommended that each technician have a pair of spare balls for maintaining optimum customer satisfaction, and that any customer missing his balls should suspect local personnel of removing these necessary items.
    Thank the technology, we replaced the balls with light. Else you would be cleaning much more.

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