Technology Tales

Adventures & experiences in contemporary technology

Evoluent Vertical Mouse 3 Configuration in Ubuntu 9.10

31st October 2009

On popping Ubuntu 9.10 onto a newly built PC, I noticed that the button mappings weren’t as I had expected them to be. The button just below the wheel no longer acted like a right mouse button on a conventional mouse and it really was throwing me. The cause was found to be in a file name evoluent-verticalmouse3.fdi that is found either in /usr/share/hal/fdi/policy/20thirdparty/ or /etc/hal/fdi/policy/.

So, to get things back as I wanted, I changed the following line:

<merge key=”input.x11_options.ButtonMapping” type=”string”>1 2 2 4 5 6 7 3 8</merge>


<merge key=”input.x11_options.ButtonMapping” type=”string”>1 2 3 4 5 6 7 3 8</merge>

If there is no sign of the file on your system, then create one named evoluent-verticalmouse3.fdi in /etc/hal/fdi/policy/ with the following content and you should be away. All that’s need to set things to rights is to disconnect the mouse and reconnect it again in both cases.

<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”ISO-8859-1″?>
<deviceinfo version=”0.2″>
<match key=”info.capabilities” contains=”input.mouse”>
<match key=”input.product” string=”Kingsis Peripherals¬† Evoluent VerticalMouse 3″>
<merge key=”input.x11_driver” type=”string”>evdev</merge>
<merge key=”input.x11_options.Emulate3Buttons” type=”string”>no</merge>
<merge key=”input.x11_options.EmulateWheelButton” type=”string”>0</merge>
<merge key=”input.x11_options.ZAxisMapping” type=”string”>4 5</merge>
<merge key=”input.x11_options.ButtonMapping” type=”string”>1 2 3 4 5 6 7 3 8</merge>

While I may not have appreciated the sudden change, it does show how you remap buttons on these mice and that can be no bad thing. Saying that, hardware settings can be personal things so it’s best not to go changing defaults based one person’s preferences. It just goes to show how valuable discussions like that on Launchpad about this matter can be. For one, I am glad to know what happened and how to make things the way that I want them to be though I realise that it may not suit everyone; that makes me reticent about asking for such things to be made the standard settings.


  • Pinkerton says:

    Hi I tried this configuration, and the mouse worked per se, but the problem is that it accelerates too fast, and it is impossible to influence the settings with xset or via the systemsettings program. lshal confirms that the values have changed, but this does not affect the operation of the mouse itself.

    Is there a way to do this? Or how do I find out what’s stopping the acceleration options to take effect?

  • Pinkerton says:

    Hi John, thanks for your reply. I tried some of the stuff in the link but was unable to make it actually control the mouse. I think there might be something I don’t understand about it.

    But maybe you could answer a more fundamental question — what do I have to do to the system to make sure the info in the .fdi files is reread? Is it sufficient to do a “restart hal” or do I need to boot?

  • ender7 says:

    I had no fdi file for the mouse so I created one, but it’s just not being read by hal, and I’m unable to change any of my button configurations (running karmic). Any help?

  • John says:

    @Pinkerton & @ender7

    All that I can say is that unplugging the mouse and reconnecting it again was enough for me. Saying that, there’s never any harm in doing a system reboot.

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