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How To Fix Mouse Lag in Ubuntu

Ubuntu 9

Ubuntu is a popular choice among Linux users, but like any operating system, it can sometimes run into issues. One of these is mouse lag, which can be incredibly frustrating and hinder productivity. In this article, we will explore various solutions to fix mouse lag in Ubuntu.

Understanding Mouse Lag

Mouse lag is a delay between the movement of your mouse and the movement of the cursor on the screen. This can be due to a variety of reasons, including hardware issues, software conflicts, or system settings.

Solutions to Fix Mouse Lag in Ubuntu

1. Modify drm_kms_helper Parameters

One of the first solutions you can try involves modifying the parameters of the drm_kms_helper module. Open your terminal and execute the following commands:

sudo su -
modprobe drm_kms_helper
echo N> /sys/module/drm_kms_helper/parameters/poll
echo 'drm_kms_helper' >> /etc/modules-load.d/local.conf
echo "options drm_kms_helper poll=N" >> /etc/modprobe.d/local.conf

Here, modprobe drm_kms_helper loads the drm_kms_helper module. The echo N> /sys/module/drm_kms_helper/parameters/poll command disables polling, which can help reduce mouse lag. The last two commands ensure that the changes persist even after a reboot.

2. Check Universal Access Settings

In some cases, the Zoom feature in Universal Access settings can cause mouse lag. To disable it, go to Settings -> Universal Access and turn off the Zoom feature.

3. Adjust USB Port

Sometimes, the issue can be as simple as the USB port you’re using for your mouse. If your mouse is connected to a USB hub with other devices, try moving the mouse to a different USB port.

4. Modify cmdline.txt File

You can also try modifying the cmdline.txt file in /boot/firmware. Add usbhid.mousepoll = 0 to the file. This command disables mouse polling, which can help reduce mouse lag.

5. Use a USB 2.0 Port

If you’re using a USB 3.0 port for your mouse, try switching to a USB 2.0 port instead. Some users have reported that this can help reduce mouse lag.

6. Check Display Refresh Rate

A low refresh rate can sometimes cause mouse lag. To check your refresh rate, go to Settings -> Displays. If it is set to a low value, try increasing it.

7. Check for Interrupt Conflicts

Interrupt conflicts can also cause mouse lag. Run cat /proc/interrupts in the terminal to see if any IRQs are being disabled. If so, try disabling the EHCI Handoff in the BIOS.

8. Adjust Wireless Mouse Dongle Position

If you’re using a wireless mouse, make sure the dongle is close enough to the mouse. If it’s too far away, it can cause lag. Try using a USB extension cord to bring the dongle closer to the mouse.

9. Change Display Resolution

In some cases, changing the display resolution can help reduce mouse lag. Go to Settings -> Displays and try setting the resolution to a different value.

10. Use Ubuntu in Xorg

If none of the above solutions work, try logging out and selecting “Ubuntu in Xorg” from the settings cogwheel in the bottom-right-hand corner of the login screen.

11. Adjust Display Refresh Rate

Lastly, if your display refresh rate is set too high, it can cause mouse lag. Try lowering the refresh rate to see if it helps.


Mouse lag can be a frustrating issue, but there are many potential solutions. The solutions listed above may not work for everyone as the cause of mouse lag can vary. However, by trying out these solutions, you should be able to find a fix that works for you. Remember to always back up your data before making any major changes to your system settings.

What should I do if I am unable to fix mouse lag using the provided solutions?

If none of the provided solutions work for you, it is recommended to seek help from the Ubuntu community forums or consider contacting Ubuntu support for further assistance.

Can I use these solutions for other Linux distributions?

While these solutions are specifically targeted for Ubuntu, some of them may work for other Linux distributions as well. However, it is always recommended to refer to the documentation or support channels specific to your distribution for accurate guidance.

Will modifying system files or settings mentioned in this article cause any other issues?

Modifying system files or settings can have unintended consequences if not done correctly. It is important to follow the instructions carefully and create backups of any files you modify. If you are unsure or uncomfortable with making these changes, it is best to seek assistance from someone with experience or consult the official Ubuntu documentation or support channels.

Do these solutions apply to both wired and wireless mice?

Yes, these solutions can be applied to both wired and wireless mice. However, some specific solutions, such as adjusting the wireless mouse dongle position, may only be applicable to wireless mice.

Is it necessary to reboot the system after making changes?

In most cases, it is recommended to reboot the system after making changes to ensure that the modifications take effect. However, some changes may not require a reboot, and the instructions provided in the solutions will specify if a reboot is necessary.

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