I received an email some days ago from a reader who wanted to know if there was a program for Microsoft Windows operating systems that replicated the middle mouse functionality of Linux systems.
If you click on the middle mouse button on a machine running a flavor of Linux, you copy the text that is selected, and if you middle-click once again while a form or text field is active, it is automatically pasted into it.
Lucky me had already a bookmark to the freeware true x-mouse gizmo for Windows website so I replied with a link to that software and think it made him happy.
He is probably not the only one who would like such functionality though, and I decided therefore to write this little article that reviews the software. I prefer that a software does not install itself on my system, a unpack and go type of software, and x-mouse is exactly this kind of program. Download the executable, run it from a location on your computer and the freeware is active. It places a small icon in the system tray.
Windows users may find the procedure to copy and paste text with the middle mouse button confusing at first but will surely love it once they get used to it. You highlight a portion of the text with the left mouse button as usual and hit the middle mouse button once the complete text is highlighted.
This will copy the text to the clipboard. The next click of the middle mouse button will paste the text if the application allows it. It makes no sense to try and paste the text to the website for example as you need a editor for this or a form field on the website.
Update: True X-Mouse Gizmo has not been updated since 2005, and it is surprising that the program still works exactly as advertised after all these years. The functionality has been tested under a 64-bit version of Windows 7, and found to be working exactly as before. There is however a bug that you will notice when you try to display the system tray icons, as the window hides itself automatically after you click, making it impossible to access any of the program running there.
Update 2: The program is fully compatible with Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system as well.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.