Controlling the Mouse Pointer Speed

by Barry Dysert
(last updated October 27, 2014)

The Mouse Pointer Speed is an important parameter contributing to how easily you can navigate through Windows. If you find that you must lift your mouse and take a couple of swipes to move your cursor across the desktop, the speed is probably too slow. On the other hand, if you're having trouble zeroing in on menu items or icons because the mouse moves too quickly, the speed is probably too fast.

To change the mouse pointer speed, you first need to pull up the Control Panel. In Windows 7 go to Start | Control Panel. If you are using Windows 8, pull up the Control Panel using one of the methods described in this article. With the Control Panel visible, click Hardware and Sound and then click Mouse. (This link is found in the Devices and Printers category.) Windows displays the Mouse Properties dialog box; you are interested in the Pointer Options tab. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. The Pointer Options tab of the Mouse Properties window.

Near the top of this window is a slider control in the Motion group box. Click and drag the slider to the left to slow down your pointer speed, or click and drag the slider to the right to speed up your pointer speed. The speed change occurs immediately, so if you slow it down too much you may find yourself lifting your mouse to make multiple swipes just to get to the OK button. Or if you speed it up too much you may find it more difficult to zero in on the OK button.

Once you have the mouse speed set the way you want, click OK to dismiss the dialog box.

 This tip (12090) applies to Windows 7 and 8.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 30 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer.  He is currently a senior software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. ...

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