Remap your mouse buttons on Windows - gHacks Tech News

Remap your mouse buttons on Windows

X-Mouse Button Control is a free portable software for Windows that you may use to remap any mouse button of the computer mouse.

The Windows operating system does not provide you with options to configure the buttons of your mouse.. While you can use a five or more button mouse without issues on the system, you are stuck with the default functionality that Windows makes available which usually is left-, middle- and right-clicking for buttons one, three and two, and page up and down (or back and forward) for buttons four and five. If you do not need the page up and down functionality and want to change it to something that you find more useful, you may realize that it is not really that easy to do that.

While you can install a heavy driver package that companies like Logitech, Razer or Microsoft provide you with, it may feel like overkill if you only want to re-map those two buttons and nothing else.

X-Mouse Button Control

x-mouse button control

Enter X-Mouse Button Control, a lightweight program for the Windows operating system that you can use to map all mouse buttons and the mouse wheel to new functions for specific windows or applications, or globally. The program is compatible with all recent versions of Windows including Windows 10.

I reviewed the program in 2008 for the first time and it has come a long way since then justifying a new review. All you need to do is open the settings menu after installation to configure a profile.

What is interesting in this regard is that you can create multiple profiles that you can switch between easily. This opens up options to create a profile for web browsing, one for coding, another for gaming, and one for Photoshop. Since you can map profiles to different programs you'd switch between different mouse profiles automatically to make use of the functionality when you switch between programs.

Configuration is a two step process

  1. Keep the global reach of the profile, or add select windows or applications to the profile so that the mouse profile is only active in them.
  2. Remap the mouse buttons as you see fit.

A click on the menu next to each mouse button or wheel option displays a long list of functions that you can map to the selected action.

Here is a short overview of what is available:

  • Clipboard manipulation actions (copy, cut, and paste).
  • Starting programs or scripts.
  • Simulate keystrokes.
  • Control media playback.
  • Use operating system specific features.

Options range from opening important programs such as the Control Panel over copying and pasting text to switching profiles, running applications, using the magnifier, and simulating key strokes. The last option provides you with the means to map custom key combinations, for instance Ctrl-Shift-Esc, that you want to activate when you press the mouse button. Custom key combinations support extra commands on top of that.

A selection of commands is available, wait for instance to wait or hold to hold down a key for some time, which you can make use of to customize the command further. Once you are done hit apply to work with the new mouse functionality.

The program makes available additional functionality in its interface. The Scrolling tab for instance lets you invert mouse wheel scrolling, enable page scrolling instead of line scrolling, or change the number of lines that are scrolled when you use the mouse wheel.

The options tag similarly displays additional customization options like changing the default mouse speed or disabling the program's scroll under cursor functionality for windows that are not active.

remamp mouse

Program settings list equally powerful options:

  • Set hotkeys to activate certain mouse profiles.
  • Define program update behavior.
  • Swap mouse button 4 and 5.
  • Activate layers temporarily by enabling certain modifier keys.
  • Set CPU priority of the application.

Closing Words

What I particularly like about the program is that it uses a couple of Megabytes of RAM when it is running in the background and that it is probably the most powerful mouse mapping program for Windows.

The layers (profiles) make it an interesting program as it provides you with options to customize the mouse buttons based on your activity on the computer. It is one of the new features that the author implemented into the program.

Summary
software image
Author Rating
1star1star1star1star1star
5 based on 2 votes
Software Name
X-Mouse Button Control
Operating System
Windows
Software Category
Productivity
Landing Page
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Comments

  1. thbb said on December 28, 2012 at 3:56 am
    Reply

    I’ve been using this for more than a month now. It’s a real helper for macros stuff.

    Here’s one I made to toggle on and off the custom style sheet for IE10:

    {HOLDMS}{ALT}xo{WAITMS}{ALT}E{WAITMS}{ALT}D{WAITMS}{RETURN}{WAITMS}{ESCAPE}

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 28, 2012 at 11:16 am
      Reply

      Looks great, thanks for posting.

  2. Ray said on December 28, 2012 at 10:06 am
    Reply

    Hi Martin,

    Thanks for the article about XBMC. I have been using the software for 2 years and really appreciate the extra functionality and low memory usage. It helps a lot when you switch between different programs.

    Great article!

  3. Lsazlo said on August 7, 2013 at 11:36 pm
    Reply

    Notice how even in 2013 this software still doesn’t handle buttons 6 and 7. So it’s not useful for me. :(

    1. spoulin23 said on November 7, 2013 at 7:29 pm
      Reply

      Also looking for a 6 button alternative………

      1. Peter said on May 25, 2016 at 1:10 pm
        Reply

        me too(

  4. Samp1800 said on August 25, 2013 at 1:49 am
    Reply

    Its not working for me… Im trying to set the middle mouse button to be ctrl only in a certain program

  5. Nd683 said on March 23, 2015 at 3:04 am
    Reply

    Figure out how to do the ctrl to side button samp1800 it’s been a while but if you see it write back

  6. Alex said on March 27, 2015 at 10:45 am
    Reply

    You can also try Key Manager:
    http://atnsoft.com/keymanager/

  7. thebird55 said on May 10, 2016 at 12:25 am
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    Does anyone know how to make X-Mouse work in Microsoft Edge? I have become dependant on X-Mouse, so it’s frustrating on those few occasions when I have to use Edge.

  8. Wardcalis said on May 24, 2016 at 3:27 am
    Reply

    Doesn’t work. I tried to remove the back and next functionality from the thumb buttons because I use them for specific things such as ‘push to talk’ in voice chat but it didn’t change anything.

  9. dav said on June 23, 2016 at 2:09 pm
    Reply

    can’t bind a mouse button to ctrl…
    for example, with “{ctrl}{num+}”, I get only “+”

    1. Slothman said on June 27, 2017 at 6:42 am
      Reply

      Same here, unfortunately :(

  10. spencer said on April 1, 2017 at 2:43 am
    Reply

    This legit works

  11. Cpt. Grapefruit said on August 13, 2017 at 1:11 pm
    Reply

    so is it possible to set one of the side buttons to be right click? if so can someone tell me how, the right mouse button broke on my favorite mouse. please help.

    1. Anonymous said on September 28, 2017 at 9:03 pm
      Reply

      Select the button you want (for side it’s usually 4 or 5) and then select right-click from the selections.

  12. Black Burn55 said on November 20, 2017 at 11:13 am
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    OMG!thanks ur genius it worked wowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

  13. Bruce said on January 12, 2018 at 8:52 am
    Reply

    How do i set up Left Click + Right Click in 1 Mouse button 4 ?

  14. Bruno de Mattina said on January 17, 2018 at 10:51 pm
    Reply

    The marvellous old A4Tech WOP-35U (5 button mouse) driver only works with XP or earlier and typically, A4Tech haven’t updated the driver. Pity, because their hardware is very durable.

    On WIN 7, I found XMouse Button Control arcane to set up, and it needed repeated restarts – very erratic and frustrating.

    GOOD NEWS: Button Manager (http://atnsoft.com/keymanager/) sets up in seconds with the A4Tech mouse and never misses a beat. Tiny footprint and memory demand. Nice job.

    Teknos3

  15. L.J said on March 14, 2018 at 7:25 am
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    i have done it to my mouse RBotton and now i can not reset x mouse please can someone help me

  16. Simon said on May 14, 2018 at 2:13 am
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    I have a 4-button Kensington Expert Mouse and X-Mouse Button control was wonderful for me until I started using Komodo IDE (based on the Mozilla code base) as my coding environment. Unfortunately these two products are incompatible and Komodo was either unreliable or wouldn’t run at all until I uninstalled X-Mouse BC. I have no idea why this was a problem but something had to go and as much as I loved X-Mouse, it was the less essential product. :-(

  17. NewYears1978 said on June 13, 2018 at 4:23 am
    Reply

    This was almost perfect for my needs. The block original (mousewheel) didn’t work though :(

  18. Anonymous said on August 22, 2018 at 12:58 am
    Reply

    Buggy Software :(

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