This App Makes Your Cheap Mouse Work Better Than Trackpad Gestures

This App Makes Your Cheap Mouse Work Better Than Trackpad Gestures
Screenshot: Pranay Parab

On one hand, using a cheap Bluetooth mouse with your Mac is better than moving the cursor with your finger. On the other hand, though, you miss out on some of macOS’ trackpad gestures — including the three-finger drag to switch to different workspaces. But there’s a free app called Mac Mouse Fix that adds trackpad gestures and smooth scrolling to your cheap Bluetooth mouse, and you should try it.

Once you’ve downloaded Mac Mouse Fix 2, it’ll immediately capture all your mouse’s buttons (except left- and right-click) to let you decide what happens when you press them. If you’re using a cheap Bluetooth mouse, it should have just three buttons, and Mac Mouse Fix will capture the middle button for your use. The app lets you configure what happens when you click, hold, double-click, or click-and-drag the middle mouse button.

If you’re big on keeping “productive” apps and “distracting” apps away from each other, you can use separate workspaces for each category of apps and access them easily through your mouse. For example, Messages and Telegram can take up one workspace, and Slack and Safari can take another, and you can set up a click-and-drag action to change workspaces. Alternatively, you can set up the middle-click to move to the next workspace and a double middle-click to return to the previous workspace.

The middle wheel button is much nicer thanks to the Smooth Scrolling option in the app, and if that’s not enough, you can also make your mouse replicate some keyboard shortcuts. For example, you can take quick screenshots using the Command + Shift + 3 or Command + Shift 4 keyboard shortcuts with the default utility or other screenshot apps on your Mac. With Mac Mouse Fix, you can pair these shortcuts to a single- or double-click of the middle button.

My Bluetooth mouse has a couple of extra buttons on the side, so I paired the screenshot actions to these buttons, which has made my workflows a lot faster. If you click the More button towards the top of Mac Mouse Fix’s preferences window, you’ll find a few more useful tweaks under App-specific settings, like enabling or disabling settings for individual apps.

When you’ve set up Mac Mouse Fix to your heart’s content, check Enable Mac Mouse Fix and close the app, and your cheap Bluetooth mouse won’t be so bad anymore.

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