Sign up ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

My original laptop adapter broke down, so I've bought a new one. It's a no-brand adapter from a Dutch internet shop.

The power of the new adapter is slightly more than the old adapter, but in my opinion that shouldn't be a problem.

The laptop is a Toshiba Satellite L40-15B. When the old adapter broke down due to short circuit, this laptop was connected.

When the adapter is unplugged, the touchpad works correctly and smoothly. But as soon as it is connected, the cursor moves jumpy and responds badly.

Does anyone know where this problem comes from, and if there's a solution?

share|improve this question
I'm having the same issue with a VAIO and new power supply arrived today from HK. However, placing adapter close to laptop - while disconnected - has no effect. Were you able to resolve the issue ? – user55894 Nov 17 '10 at 9:41
Nope, the problem still persisted until this day. – Ikke Nov 17 '10 at 9:46
Same problem on a N56VV S4070D asus laptop. The touchpad makes hard to place the cursor at a certain position. The cursor is quite jumpy. – INS May 28 '14 at 20:03

3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

My initial feeling is that the new power supply is causing electrical interference. The touchpad is likely connected internally via USB, which CAN (won't always of course) be susceptible to interference.

Here's a test for this.... do you see the incorrect behaviour if you have your new power supply plugged in an sitting next to your computer, but not actually plugged into the machine?

share|improve this answer
The problem ceased to exist. I suspect the powercord from the socket to the adapter wasn't plugged in correctly. When the problem comes back, i'll try this. – Ikke Nov 30 '09 at 5:38
I just found out when I place my adapter close to my laptop, the problems exists. As soon as the distance is bigger, it just works fine. So interference it is. – Ikke Nov 30 '09 at 5:44

I have the same problem (erratic or no control on the touchpad) and found it disappeared as soon as I unplugged the replacement (and probably not from the laptop manufacturer) power supply from my HP laptop. I then found this post on another forum that seems pretty accurate:

My guess is that there might actually be something wrong with the touchpad circuitry, or you have a power supply problem as suggested in this clip from Wikipedia:

If the computer is powered by an external power supply (PSU), the detailed construction of the PSU will influence the virtual ground effect; a touchpad may work properly with one PSU but be jerky or malfunction with another (this does not imply any electrical risk whatsoever, a delicate capacitative ground, not a contact ground, is at issue). This has been known to cause touchpad problems when a manufacturer's PSU, which will have been designed to work with the touchpad, is replaced by a different type. This effect can be checked by touching a metallic part of the computer with the other hand and seeing if operation is restored. In some cases touching the (insulated) power supply with some part of the body, or using the computer on the lap instead of on a desk, while working can restore correct operation.

I can confirm that my issue disappears when I do the following: - unplug the power supply from the laptop. - touch a metallic part of the laptop (i.e. USB port) - place the laptop on my lap (probably earthing it as above). - touch the power supply with my hand.

All in all it seems to be down to the electronic circuitry of the replacement (non-manufacturers) power supply is not the same as the manufacturer's original unit.

So I either have to use it on my lap or plug a USM mouse in if using on a desk.

share|improve this answer
Exactly what I am experiencing. Looked around the web and doesn't seem to have other solutions. – rokeyge Jan 10 '13 at 19:11

I had this issue just now, then found this while attempting to troubleshoot. At first I thought this was caused by a recent Ubuntu update that conflicted somehow with my Dell Mini 10.

Turns out it was the power outlet I was plugging my laptop into. What's even more odd is when the power strip I have the power adapter plugged into is switched off, the mouse still does not work. So I started plugging in the switched off power strip with my power adapter and laptop plugged into it to other outlets and with all of them my mouse works except this one outlet. So I then discovered that although everything else I've plugged into this outlet seems to work, when the fish tank light which is plugged into this same outlet is on, the mouse on this laptop doesn't work whether the power strip is switched on or off. Just last week though, this very plug/power configuration was working perfectly. Maybe this 1 year old netbook is starting to show it's age? At any rate, I hope this helps someone!

share|improve this answer
+1 This was exactly the problem I had with my new laptop:ASUS K55A DS71. Thanks for this info, I was about to bring my laptop on service center. – fiberOptics Oct 31 '13 at 1:39

protected by Troggy Dec 6 '10 at 16:19

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality answers, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site.

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.