How to Change Your Mouse

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A mouse is one of the most used pieces of computer hardware. Because of the constant use, a mouse can wear out, break and stop working, making replacement necessary. Sometimes, a user may want to swap a perfectly functional mouse for a newer model with more features. Changing a computer's mouse can often improve computing productivity and help the user get the most out of a computer.

Things You'll Need

  • Mouse
  • Installation CD (optional)
  • Disconnect the old mouse device from the computer. Before pitching the old mouse into the garbage, investigate options for recycling it or donating it to a local school or not-for-profit organization.

  • Connect the new mouse into the same USB connector on the computer. Most computers should automatically detect a new USB device such as a mouse. If your computer does so, then the mouse is ready for use. If the computer alerts you that a driver must be installed to make the mouse operational, continue to step 3.

  • Install the necessary device driver, either by inserting the CD that came with the mouse or by visiting the website for the mouse's manufacturer. If you have the CD, insert it into the computer's CD or DVD drive.

    On a Windows-based computer, the CD's installation wizard should automatically start. Follow the on-screen prompts to install the mouse drivers.

    On a Mac, the CD should appear as a disc on the desktop. Double-click the icon and then follow the on-screen prompts.

  • To customize the mouse's functions and performance on a Windows-based computer, click the "Start" button and then select "Control Panel." In the "Control Panel" window, double-click the "Hardware" icon and then click the "Mouse" icon. The "Mouse Properties" window has such tabs as "Buttons," "Pointers" and "Pointer Options" with settings that allow you to change how the device's buttons and the on-screen pointer work. Save the changes and then close the window(s).

  • To customize the mouse's functions on a Mac, click the "Apple" icon in the top menu bar, select "System Preferences" and then click "Keyboard & Mouse." The mouse's preference settings allows you to change such mouse functions as scrolling. Save the changes, if necessary, and then close the window(s).

Tips & Warnings

  • If your computer does not immediately recognize the new mouse, restart the machine. On a Windows-based computer, click the "Start" menu and then click "Restart." On a Mac, click the "Apple" icon in the top menu bar and then select "Restart." While a mouse device's basic functionality, such as scrolling and clicking, should work once its driver is installed, some mouse devices require you to install additional software on the computer it's used with to take advantage of more advanced features, such as programming specific applications to launch when you press extra buttons on the side of the mouse.

References

  • "Upgrading and Repairing PCs, 18th ed.;" Scott Mueller; 2009
  • Microsoft: Change Mouse Settings
  • "1001 Computer Hints and Tips;" Editors of Reader's Digest; 2002
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