If you have ever, while typing on your laptop, found that the cursor jumps around for no apparent reason resulting in whatever you are typing not appearing where it should be, you have gotten, what I call the “jumping cursor syndrome”.

This is a problem that affected my Dell Inspiron 1764 laptop and after googling to find a solution, it turns out to be be a problem that obviously affects not only Dell laptops but those by other manufacturers including HP, Lenova, Compaq, Asus, etc. The indications are that it started with the Vista operating system but those who have Windows 7 are also affected by the problem. There is controversy about what specifically causes this to happen though the prevailing opinion seems to be that it is inadvertent contact with the touch pad while typing that causes the problem.

Assuming that you don’t have a defective touchpad – and the probability is that you do not – then take the following steps:

Make sure that you have the latest touchpad driver installed – some people have reported that with an updated driver the problem went away.

If that does not solve the problem, consider installing a free program called TouchFreeze. It takes very little in the way of resources and solved the problem for me. The installation is easy and it is set-up to automatically start when the computer boots up. The basic concept is to immobilize the touchpad momentarily while typing preventing inadvertent contact with the touchpad from causing the cursor to jump. Even if you think that you are being careful and not making contact with the touchpad, the likelihood is that you are doing so.

Here is how the TouchFreeze program is described:

“This is a very small but useful application that allows you to disable the touchpad of your laptop while typing. The program doesn’t need configuration, it automatically detects when you are typing and disables the touchpad momentarily in order to avoid changing the position of the cursor, changing to another window or executing any unwanted action while typing and sliding your hand accidentally on the touchpad surface. The installation procedure is very simple, you only have to execute the downloaded file, accept to run the program in the security warning window, and accept to install the program on the selected folder or browse to select another one on the wizard setup. After installing the program, there will appear its icon in the system tray, by right-clicking on the icon you can load/unload TouchFreeze at system startup and exit the program. The program only requires 100kb of free space on the disk and 3Mb of RAM. The operating systems supported are: Microsoft Windows NT, 2000 and XP.”

Some people claim that TouchFreeze does not work with Windows 7 – others have no problem. I am in the latter camp since I have Windows 7,  64 bit installed on my laptop and since then the curse of the jumping cursor has been resolved. Even if you have a laptop other than from Dell, this solution should take care of the problem.

There are numerous sites where you can download the TouchFreeze program. Here is one site where you can download it or you can download it from here.

UPDATE: Outlined below are the three steps you should take to try and resolve the problem. I hope it takes care of the problem for you – it certainly did so for me.

Update the driver for your touchpad. Check the manufacturer’s website for updated drivers for your laptop.

If your laptop has an Alps touchpad (as mine does), check out this link for the latest drivers. However, before you update the driver make sure that you create a restore point so that if the touchpad stops working after the update, you are in a position to easily restore your computer to the prior status before the update.

If the above step does not resolve the problem or if your driver is already up to date, go to Control Panel……..> Mouse…….> Pointer Options…….>”Untick” the “Enhance Pointer Precision” box if there is a tick mark next to it.

If this does not take care of the problem, then install the TouchFreeze program mentioned above.

The steps shown above took care of the problem with the “jumping cursor” on my laptop.

A disclaimer: I am reasonably computer savvy but not a computer expert. I don’t believe implementing the steps shown above will cause any harm to your computer. I have not read any instance of it doing so – but you do so at your own risk!

Also, do leave comments if any of the suggestions above work for you to help others …… or alternatively, if you find another work-around do share that information.

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4 Responses to “Is your Dell Inspiron laptop having a problem with a jumping cursor?”

  1. Booker says:

    Helpful information. Lucky me I found your website by chance, and I am
    stunned why this twist of fate did not took place earlier!
    I bookmarked it.

  2. philip says:

    Thanks for you help. I installed touch freeze and it seems like the problem with the jumping cursor when away. I been putting up with this problem for about three years. Thank you, Thank you, thank you.

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