macOS Sierra: Disable Mouse Acceleration with SteelSeries ExactMouse

adjust-mouse-acceleration-mac
The Acceleration panel, one of the solutions on the internet that didn’t work for me. Photo credit: osxdaily.com
Do you hate mouse acceleration? I do. Coming from decades of Windows use, the steep acceleration curve that macOS defaults for mice has always been intriguing to me – the inability to have precise control over my pointer movement actually decreases my productivity. It might be because of the fact that I’ve used a Razer mouse (with acceleration turned off via software) for years, but still, I would really appreciate a way to switch off acceleration.

Up till last year, many users have used SmoothMouse to end their mouse acceleration troubles, but the release of macOS Sierra rendered the software incompatible due to the removal of system calls necessary for the software to work. Another reliable trick is via the terminal command (followed by a re-login or restart):

defaults write .GlobalPreferences com.apple.mouse.scaling -1

This has worked for me until the latest Sierra update (10.12.4) along with Command Line Tools 8.3 – which somehow broke the ability to retain changes in the Tracking Speed setting in System Preferences –> Mouse. It’s really frustrating because the pointer speed now slows to a crawl. The exact problem is described in this StackExchange question. The author mentioned that updating Xcode solved the problem for him, but I didn’t even have Xcode installed!

I was really frustrated due to my inability to continue doing my work in the office properly. After long hours of Googling, I finally found an easy solution – SteelSeries ExactMouse.

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 12.17.43 AM
Switch to “On” to fix your woes.
It was as simple as installing and launching the software. Ta-da! My pointer is now acceleration-free. And you don’t need a SteelSeries mouse for the software to work.

(I’ve noticed that it does screw around with your trackpad acceleration as well though, so you might want to switch it off when not using a mouse.)

While the command line solution definitely works better as it doesn’t conflict with the trackpad’s acceleration (which, ironically, I find necessary for the best experience), the ExactMouse tool is your best bet before Apple fixes the bug.

Hope this helps!

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