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The nub to my laptop's stick mouse (aka nipple mouse, pointing stick, trackpoint, track stick) fell off and is MIA.

Do I need to purchase one from the same manufacturer (Dell) or is the little square post the same for all makes and models?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Outside of the CPU, memory, hard drive, and mini PCI/PCI-E slot -- that is, the things there are standards for that the laptop manufacturers can't make themselves -- there are no guarantees about compatibility between laptop components even of the same model from the same manufacturer. Granted, usually the same model works just fine, but I've seen manufacturers (Dell specifically, although I doubt they're unique) not maintain component compatibility on consumer models with the same model number. They have "hardware refreshes" or "revisions" that basically say "we're changing this and not really telling anyone because the cost of re-marketing a revision is too high".

That said, 100% compatibility on the replaceable cover for a stick mouse is not necessary. It's just a cover that gives your finger something to grip while protecting the mouse itself from touching your fingers.

I do know that HP used to sell the tips by themselves at one point. I do not know if they still do or if Dell ever has.

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And, if you haven't already, check the box the computer came in. My Dell included a spare. I didn't know it was there for awhile as it's so tiny in a very tiny plastic bag.

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These are pretty rare now (except for Lenovo laptops), They are not all the same as they can be different heights and shapes.

Typically whilst it may look round with the plastic on, underneath the actual "stick" can be square or circular.

Personally, look on eBay or ringing a service centre will be your best bet - but a part like this should not be expensive at all.

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Alternatively, you can take the eraser off of a pencil and cut it to the right size, then use a small knife and tweezers to cut the peg out. That's a very popular solution from what I've read.

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they wouldn't last very long. even the 'proper' nub tips don't last more than 3-4 years, and they're a better grade of rubber – Journeyman Geek May 1 '11 at 5:55

I do believe only one or two companies make them, but i've seen different nub varients - with the same size of 'stick' but different depths , so i would not recommend getting a nub from another brand without trying.

Lenovo's spare nubs tend to be 3 packs with three different tops(for about 20 dollars or so), and their systems come with more than one so if you have a friend with one, you could probably borrow one to test.

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