[SOLVED] Should I be using evdev or synaptics for my touchpad?
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Should I be using evdev or synaptics for my touchpad?
Sorry if this is a really naive question, but should I be using evdev or synaptics for my laptop's touchpad?
I'm running Slackware-current on a ThinkPad T410. In the past, two-finger scrolling was working without me doing anything to set it up. I'm not sure exactly when, but recently it stopped working. The basic touchpad functionality still works, but I'd like to re-enable two-finger scrolling. In researching this, I've found a lot of threads and docs talking about synaptics, but not so much talk about evdev. Looking though my /var/logs/Xorg.0.log, I can see that my system is using evdev, rather than synaptics. Also, when I try to run synclient -l, I get the message, Couldn't find synaptics properties. No synaptics driver loaded?
So, is evdev fine, and I should look into enabling two-finger scroll with evdev, or should I try to get my touchpad running with synaptics?
evdev is an Xorg input driver for Linux´s generic event devices.
From 'man synaptics'
synaptics is an Xorg input driver for touchpads. Even though touchpads can be handled by the normal evdev or mouse drivers, this driver allows more advanced features of the touchpad to become available.
Your touchpad options can be customised by copying /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf to /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf and then editing that copy. Details of options are in 'man synaptics'
When starting X, your touchpad should be automatically detected. Perhaps in your endeavours to get this working, you have somehow disabled the touchpad device through manipulation of Option "TouchpadOff". This would be maintained through suspend and resume cycles.
BTW - Had you read CHANGES_AND_HINTS.TXT you would have seen
Xorg no longer uses /etc/X11/xorg.conf by default (and in most cases, there
is absolutely no need for it). You can still create an xorg.conf file if
you wish, or you can create some minimal xorg.conf snippets with only the
specific contents that you wish to override (as an example, to use a binary
video driver) as separate files in the /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/ directory.
/usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/ is the "packaged" configuration directory; all
files ending with ".conf" in this directory are used by the X server
unless there is an identically-named file in the local sysadmin directory.
The local sysadmin config directory is /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/ - all files
ending with ".conf" in this directory are parsed.
There are several default config files in /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/:
a "catchall" file for input devices using the evdev driver; this
should work for most hardware in the absence of a better driver
overrides the earlier 10-evdev.conf file and uses the synaptics
driver for all touchpads
Thanks for your reply Allend. I don't know why, after restarting the computer, my touchpad is running with synaptics again. I never made any changes to any xorg.conf files.
I actually did read through the Changes and Hints, but from my reading of it, I still don't understand why the synaptics driver didn't get my touchpad in the first place. It's supposed to override the evdev driver, but it didn't for me on my last boot.
Anyhow, I guess I can make this as solved, as my computer is running properly again, but as for my original question, what I was really wondering about was if either evdev or synaptics would be a more efficient driver. (I don't know much about drivers, so sorry if this is a silly question) I know that synaptics allows for more advanced features, but does this also mean that it's a little slower? Or does evdev, being a generic driver perform more slowly? Or is my understanding of drivers so off, that this question doesn't really make sense?