How to get your disappeared mouse back on Chromebook
I recently expected a strange issue on my Chromebook, the cursor disappeared. Here is how I get the cursor back and what you can do.
Why the mouse disappeared on your Chromebook?
There can be many reasons why your cursor disappeared on your Chromebook. It can be because you accidentally disable the touchpad, it’s the more common reason as one shortcut exist that you could have triggered by accident. At least, this is why my Chromebook had this disappeared mouse issue. I’ll tell you later what I did to bring the touchpad back
But it can also be some configuration changes that occur because of an update or a wrong manipulation, your Chromebook could also have an issue regarding the hardware related to the mouse. I tried to find a solution to all of these issues and detail them below. As every Chromebook is different, the issues can be different too, but I did my best to tell you how to bring back the cursor on your Chromebook.
Toggles the touchpad to get the cursor back
As I said before, the most common reason why your mouse disappeared on your Chromebook is that you disabled it. I know it feels not possible as I doubt it too, but even if I’m used to computers as it’s my job, I accidentally disable the touchpad on my Chromebook.
To toggle back the touchpad on your Chromebook, you can use the same shortcut used to disable it, which is Shift+Search+P. You can try to press the keys multiple times to see if it helps as just disabling and enabling again the touchpad can also help to fix the issue.
You can also go to the control panel of your Chromebook to check the settings related to the mouse. As your mouse disappeared it’s quite tricky to go to the proper settings without the cursor but follow these steps and you will be able to look and change the mouse settings:
- On your Chromebook, press the search key or launcher key depending on your model.
- The search bar opens and you can search for Settings and press enter to go to the control panel
- Once the settings are opened, you can also search for the setting “Mouse” and press enter.
- Here are all the settings related to the mouse, you can press Tab to navigate forward and Shift + Tab to navigate backward. Then use enter to enable or disable a parameter.
- Check if any parameter should be enabled and try to do it using the keyboard.
Reset the flags linked to your Google account
Another way to disable the cursor is to disable one experimental feature available on Google Chrome. Chrome has a webpage chrome://flags that can be used to enable or disable the experimental features. On every other computer, the experimental features are only related to Google Chrome, but as your Chromebook is running on ChromeOS, it can also be affected by these features. Moreover, as you are probably connected to your Google account, these features will be synchronized between your devices, which means that even if you reset your Chromebook, you will have the issue as soon as you sign in to your Google account again.
You should try to reset all the flags on Chrome, again as you still have your cursor gone, here are the steps to disable the Chrome flags without the mouse:
- Press the search or launcher key
- Search for Chrome and press enter to launch Chrome. You can also use the Alt + Tab shortcut to navigate between your opened application if Chrome is already started.
- If you opened Chrome, you should be already able to type in the URL bar, if not you can use Tab and Shift + Tab to get the focus on the URL bar.
- Type “chrome://flags” and press enter
- Press Tab to get the focus and the “Reset all” button.
- Press Enter and the flags have been reset but the changes will be applied after a reboot.
- Restart your Chromebook, you can press and hold the power button or use the Ctrl + Shift + Q + Q shortcut. Hold Ctrl + Shift and press Q twice.
Restarting the Chromebook
Another way to fix the gone cursor issue is to restart your Chromebook. You might have already tried it but if did not yet, just go ahead and restart your Chromebook. Restarting is always helping as it will flush the memory and therefore reset some settings to their initial values.
If there is anything stuck on the software level, restarting will allow ChromeOS to refresh the software. It’s always the first thing to try on any of your devices, as soon as you have an issue, first try to restart it. It can fixed a lot of issues such as the issue You're offline check your connection on YouTube. It won’t hurt your device, nothing is the worst that can happen with a restart.
Try to plug in another mouse
If the above solutions did not work for your case, you can try to plug another mouse into your Chromebook and see if the cursor is back. There can be an issue related to the touchpad itself, it can an issue with the connection between the motherboard and the touchpad, but it can also be a software issue related to the touchpad.
In any case, by plugging in another mouse you will not use the touchpad anymore. If you don’t have any other mouse, buying it won’t be a bad choice even if it’s not helping. Using a mouse instead of the touchpad is clearly helping to use the Chromebook faster and reduce fatigue. I personally love to use the Wireless Logitech G305, it’s a lightweight but still a very performant mouse.
Factory reset the Chromebook
The last way that you can try to fix the issue is to do a powerwash to reset your Chromebook to factory settings. By doing this, you are sure that every setting available on your Chromebook will be reset to its default value. Therefore, if any setting was compromising your touchpad and the ChromeOS software, it will be reset to the factory value where your Chromebook was working fine.
But be careful, a factory reset will erase all user data on your Chromebook’s hard drive, and all the files stored in the Download folder will be lost. Be sure to save them all in an external drive such as a USB key before processing a factory reset.
I hope one of the ways above helped you to fix the disappeared mouse issue. Every Chromebook is different so the issue can come from a different part depending on your model. But again, the most common case is that you disabled the touchpad accidentally, pressing Shift+Search+P should work then.
If none of the above solutions worked for you, unfortunately, it means that there is a hardware issue on your Chromebook and that reparation is needed. It’s difficult to do it by yourself, and it would break any ongoing warranty so better to go to a professional repair store. As Chromebooks are quite cheap computers it might be always worth it to pay for a repair, you can try it yourself. For example, the reparation to replace a broken screen is an easy job.