Enabling / disabling touchpad edge scrolling on Debian GNOME desktop

What is Edge Scrolling?

Using a middle wheel mouse, you can easily scroll up and down long web pages, documents, and anywhere you can scroll. On a laptop, it is possible to scroll up and down using the far right edge of the touchpad. While this edge scrolling works fine for some, some of you might find it a real nuisance as it can mess up your current view if you accidentally tap or swipe up and down the right side of the touchpad. Keeping the personal preferences of all users, Debian has kept this setting configurable. You can enable / disable this feature using the settings utility in the Debian GUI.

In this article, we will explain how to enable / disable touchpad edge scrolling on your Debian laptop. You can reproduce the procedure described in this article on a Debian 10 Buster system.

Using the Settings Utility to Enable / Disable Edge Scrolling

The Debian Settings Utility allows many administrative changes and configurations to be made to the system. One of them is to customize the behavior of the mouse and touchpad.

You can access the settings via a search in the Application Launcher as follows:

Or click the down arrow located in the upper right corner of the Debian desktop and then click the settings icon in the next window:

Navigation bar menu

The “Settings” utility opens in the form in which you were last. You need to click the Devices tab and then Mouse & Touchpad to make the necessary settings.

Here’s what the Mouse & Touchpad view looks like:

Mouse and touchpad settings

Alternatively, you can directly launch this view by entering the appropriate mouse and touchpad keywords in the application launcher as shown below:

Change touchpad settings

In the Mouse & Touchpad preferences view, try to locate the Edge Scroll button under the TouchPad section. By default, this button is enabled in Debian, which means Edge Scrolling is enabled on the touchpad. Just turn off the button to disable edge scrolling, or turn it on to turn it on. As soon as you do this, your new settings will take effect immediately. To some, this feature seems like a blessing, and to some it is just a nuisance. So whatever your personal preference, you can play around with this button in the settings utility to turn this feature off or on.

Enabling / disabling touchpad edge scrolling on Debian GNOME desktop

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