Change what your mouse buttons do

Introduction

red yellow and blue mouse showing the left and right buttons on top and side buttons just visible
Cheap gaming mouse with left and right click buttons on top. Plus 2 thumb buttons on the left side

Sometimes we want to change what a mouse button can do. You can buy a mouse with 5 or more buttons for around rs500. The extra buttons can be made to act like a left mouse click or give a keyboard action. This is called remapping the buttons.

Some people who have problems with their hands may find this helpful. You may get pain in your hands (like I do from arthritis) or you may have weak hands. Or some other reason.

Programs that may help

shows 2 yellow buttons that contrast against the blue body of the mouse
The two yellow thumb buttons

These programs can help you make your mouse easier to use. These are for Microsoft Windows computers and laptops. They are free! You can see a longer review here: https://www.raymond.cc/blog/changing-and-customizing-your-mouse-buttons-actions/.

X-Mouse Button Control

https://www.highrez.co.uk/downloads/xmousebuttoncontrol.htm “X-Mouse Button Control” free mouse button remapper can change up to 5 buttons.

Mouse Manager

https://realityripple.com/Software/Applications/Mouse-Manager/ Mouse Manager for remapping mouse up to 5 buttons https://realityripple.com/download.php?id=MMGR actual program download . or pay for a more complex version.

Autohotkey

This is a little different but can do SO much more. It is a brilliant program and worth the effort to get to know.

screen shot shows the title remap keyboard and the simple code that is needed
Screenshot of autohotkey that shows how the a key can become a b key. Simply put a::b.

https://autohotkey.com/docs/misc/Remap.htm uses autohotkey will do mouse buttons. You can make this specific to one or two programs if you want to. For example, make the button 5 open your email program when using the web browser.

Clickymouse

Some say this is easy others say you need to do the actions that you want the button click to do. Worth trying if the others do not help you.

http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/clickymouse_free_edition.html remaps mouse keys.

Keyboard Changes

Sometimes it is useful to change the keyboard to suit your needs. Using the Tab key is one more action that may be difficult or may cause pain. If you do not use the CapLocks key often you can swap the Caplocks and Tab keys. Many other changes are possible. You need to think about what is difficult-painful. Then think what you could do instead that is easier or less painful. Hopefully one of these programs may let you then change your keyboard as you want to.

Autohotkey

Autohotkey is excellent for this. You can have spelling mistakes automatically corrected. You can get a $ written when you press the letter e 3 times. You can automatically make a word you commonly use start with a capital letter eg a name. There is a ready made list of spelling mistakes that it will correct that you can download and use. This article gives details on using it for spelling correction http://www.computoredge.com/AutoHotkey/Add_AutoCorrection_to_Your_Windows_PC_with_AutoHotkey.html.

You do need to feed in the changes that you want. Then you need to remember the shortcuts you used! The more shortcuts the more this can be a challenge for phrases or actions. But once you get the hang of this – you will wish you found it years ago.

This can make changes that affect ALL programs. Or you can make them specific to one or two programs. So “yo si” in your email program may write out:

“Yours sincerely
Mr Mickie Mouse
Actor in Walt Disney Movies”

But use the same in the browser and it types

“Love
Mickie”

For much more information do go to their site https://autohotkey.com/docs/AutoHotkey.htm.

Keytweak

https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/keytweak/ for the keyboard. This uses  the registry to change what a key on your keyboard does. I am not sure if it changes  mouse buttons. Once this is changed you can undo it but it will effect all programs you use.

Linux Users

You can use Autokey – which you can install using the program managers eg Synaptic if you use Ubuntu or Mint or related operating systems. It is excellent and will do a lot (if not all) that autohotkey will use.

Mac users

Sorry, I am not familiar with what is available for Mac users.

Summary

There is software available that can make it easier to use your mouse and keyboard. Make them suit your hands and what you can do. Try these out and see if they make things easier or quicker for you.

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