How to Change Mouse Speed or Sensitivity

Speed up or slow down your Mac or PC Mouse or Touchpad

race among computer mouses, crossing a finish line

Mehaniq / Getty Images

A computer's mouse speed or sensitivity can refer to both the speed at which the mouse's pointer moves across the screen and the time between each button press on the mouse during a double-click. If you aren't comfortable with the default speed of the mouse you use with your computer, change the settings.

A touchpad, sometimes referred to as the mousepad or trackpad, uses separate settings for its mouse pointer and buttons.

Both the touchpad and mouse speed settings can be changed to suit your personal taste or physical ability. Here's how to determine the current mouse settings on a Mac or Windows 10 PC and make changes if needed.

How to Change Your Mouse Speed in Windows 10

To change the mouse speed in Windows 10:

  1. From the Search bar, type mouse. In the results, select mouse settings. When the Settings window opens, select Additional mouse options.

    Mouse settings
  2. In the Control Panel applet for Mouse Properties, change the speed with the slider and test it by double-clicking the test folder icon. The faster the speed you choose, the faster you need to press the mouse buttons for a double-click to work. If you want to keep the change, click Apply to save the change. If you don't save the change, the settings revert to the way they were before you opened the settings window.

    mouse properties
  3. Click Pointer Options in the top menu of the same pop-up window to change the speed at which the mouse cursor (or pointer) moves across the screen.

    pointer options
  4. The faster a cursor's speed is, the less you need to move the mouse. If you make the speed slower, you have to move the mouse farther to make the cursor travel the same distance. After you reach the desired speed, click Apply.

How to Adjust the Touchpad Cursor Speed in Windows 10

Windows Settings only shows trackpad configuration options if Windows detects that your system uses a trackpad. Otherwise, those options are hidden.

To change the touchpad speed in Windows 10, open Windows Settings by pressing Win+I. Click Devices and then Touchpad.

When the Settings window opens, drag the slider in the window to the left or right to change the speed of the cursor when using the touchpad; from the same screen, use the slider to adjust sensitivity. Unlike the mouse settings, these changes go into effect as soon as you make them. You do not need to press any Apply button.

How to Change the Mouse Tracking Speed on a Mac

Changing the mouse tracking speed on a Mac is just as easy as changing it on a Windows 10 computer.

  1. On your Mac, click the Apple icon at the top of the screen and choose System Preferences from the menu.

    Opening the System Preferences on a Mac
  2. Click Mouse in the System Preferences screen.

    System Preferences showing Mouse icon
  3. From the top menu in the next screen, click Point & Click.

    Mouse system preferences
  4. Drag the slider under Tracking speed to increase or decrease the cursor speed. The faster the tracking speed is, the less physical movement you need to make to move the cursor.

How to Change Your Trackpad's Tracking Speed on a Mac

Whether your trackpad is built in to your Mac laptop or is a peripheral you use with your Mac desktop computer, the method to change the trackpad speed is the same.

  1. Click the Apple icon and choose System Preferences in the menu. Click Trackpad in the System Preferences screen.

    System Preferences showing the Trackpad icon
  2. On the next screen, click Point & Click.

    Trackpad system preferences
  3. Use the Tracking speed slider to change the tracking speed of the trackpad on your Mac. Select how fast you want the tracking speed to be by dragging the slider between Slow and Fast. The faster the tracking speed is, the less physical movement you need to make to move the cursor.

How to Change the Double-Click Speed on a Mac

Changing the speed of a double-click is part of the Accessibility features on a Mac.

  1. Click on the Apple icon and choose System Preferences from the menu. Click Accessibility.

    System Preferences showing Accessibility icon

    

  2. Choose Mouse & Trackpad in the left menu.

    Mouse & Trackpad Accessibility preferences
  3. Drag the slider next to Double-click speed to change the time between each click for both the physical mouse and trackpad. The change takes effect immediately.