37

I am getting over an upper back injury and I am finding that drag+drop is irritating some of my upper back muscles. Moving the mouse cursor isn't a problem, but keeping the button held down while moving it is. (In reality I use a trackpad, but it's the same issue.)

Is there any way (via some kind of plugin software, if necessary) on Windows 7 that I could use an alternative to drag+drop that looks the same to software? In other words, I could do something like SHIFT+click and it would make the OS think that the mouse is still being held down, until I click somewhere else?

  • SHIFT+click enters "drag mode", emits a MOUSEDOWN event
  • moving the mouse in "drag mode" makes OS think mouse button is still held down
  • clicking in "drag mode" emits a MOUSEUP event and exits "drag mode"
  • 14
    Actually, it's not the same issue; trackpads are nasty, finger-twisting devices - get a mouse, the whole process is more fluid. Otherwise, most trackpad software has some kind of 'tap-style' that will be recognised as 'hold', have look through your pad's control panel – Tetsujin Aug 21 '16 at 21:15
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    try using your keyboard instead – njzk2 Aug 22 '16 at 3:27
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    @Tetsujin High-end trackpads with good drivers can be very nice to use. Just most trackpads are awful. – Alexander O'Mara Aug 22 '16 at 4:52
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    I've used trackpads and mice extensively; mice cause me pain and I don't use them when I can avoid, whereas my trackpad on my notebook is something I can use for longer periods of time. So no, I'm not going to get a mouse. – Jason S Aug 22 '16 at 15:48
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    If you tap-release-mousemove on the touch-sensitive part of a touchpad, often it will switch from normal move to click+move mode, to change back upon finger release. – wizzwizz4 Aug 22 '16 at 16:29
68

Windows has a "ClickLock" feature that enables you to highlight or drag without holding down the mouse button.

Go to the Control Panel, then Mouse Properties. Under the Buttons tab check "Turn on ClickLock."

Once enabled, briefly press and hold the mouse button. To release, briefly press and hold again. You can even change the length of the button press needed under "Settings..." once ClickLock is enabled.

enter image description here

  • 41
    They didn't call it StickyMouse? Blasphemy! – user20574 Aug 22 '16 at 4:11
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    @user20574 what's StickyMouse? Google gives this – phuclv Aug 22 '16 at 4:44
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    @Lưu Vĩnh Phúc A play on stickykeys I think. – Alexander O'Mara Aug 22 '16 at 4:55
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    @AlexanderO'Mara It also rhymes with Mickey Mouse. – Matthew Crumley Aug 22 '16 at 15:28
  • you can press alt+printscreen so that it only takes the windows screenshot instead of the whole screen which will look much better – phuclv Nov 26 '16 at 11:03
18

As an alternative to the already posted answers, you can turn on Mouse Keys. Mouse Keys lets you use the numeric keypad to control the mouse pointer and buttons. You can combine this with a real mouse or trackpad, so that you use the keypad to control the buttons, but a mouse or trackpad for positioning.

AltShiftNumLock gives you a dialog box asking you whether you want to turn on Mouse Keys. Once enabled, the numpad's / and - keys can be used to switch between the left and right mouse button (or * for both), 0 will press and hold the mouse button, and . releases it.

8

If you use "ClickLock" (Windows 7 and above) you have to be able to press the mouse button for a very short time to start a drag, however a lot of people can't do this....

There are many mouse on the market with additional buttons, often these come with software that let you define what you wish the additional buttons to do. XMouse Button Control (XMBC) is free software that claim to work with most mouse with additional buttons and allows you to control what these buttons do, one option it gives is “Click-Drag [Sticky buttons/keys]”

If you are using a Microsoft Mouse you can download the control software from hear, sorry I can’t find a list of what it allows you to defined each mouse button to do on each version of windows, but worth a try.

  • 4
    I believe you should write from here instead of from hear. – haykam Aug 22 '16 at 20:03
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    If you can't even use Click Lock then perhaps you would be better off with Mouse Keys - this makes the keypad 0 key hold down the mouse button while the keypad . key releases it. – Neil Aug 22 '16 at 20:27
3

For people suffering from various irritations/diabilities which make mouse clicking difficult or impossible, I found there is an useful tool available, I quote:

Point-N-Click is a FREE stand-alone on-screen virtual mouse designed for anyone with a disability that makes it difficult or impossible to click a physical computer mouse. As long as they can move a mouse, trackball or other pointing device, they can send mouse clicks to virtually any Windows application or DOS application that can run within a window and even many that are full screen.

You click (or drag, or whatever - see possible actions below) just by stopping the device pointer for certain time.

Maybe your problems are not so severe, but I'm posting this because of other readers with injuries or disabilities.

  • Do not forget to run it as administrator on Windows 7 and higher.

enter image description here

Some time ago I already posted similar answer on software recommendations site.

2

Use a trackball, but rig up the button to be pressed with the other hand. This is a feature I look for in a tiny (for HTPC) keyboard+ball device. But for a good quality Kensington trackball, it would be a simple mod will wire a switch in parallel to the existing one. Put it on the other side of the keyboard or use a foot switch. The company that makes XKeys sells foot switches and such.

I do suggest this would be the most ergonomic.

As for a key toggle, I think that some 3rd party mouse/trackball drivers offer that. I don't recall the current kensington software, but as you note it’s “other” balls that need this kind of thing for a larger number of users. With 4 or 6 buttons, it might be a choice to set one to latch left button down. I saw that many years ago but it could have been Logitech.

  • he said software, not hardware – Keltari Aug 22 '16 at 5:15
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    I stand by the suggestion as the best solution; he migt not have considered a simple mod but supposed special hardware to be impractical. And remember Circuit Cellar? Steve said his favorite programming language is “solder”, so… – JDługosz Aug 22 '16 at 5:19
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    A run-of-the-mill <$5 mouse plugged in as a second input device should serve the purpose with no modification needed. Flip it around so the buttons face you. Take the ball out. – Ben Voigt Aug 22 '16 at 19:05
2

Just in case none of the mentioned ways work out for you AutoHotKey allows to do exactly what you are looking for. In fact i used a similar script when i was still trying to get things done on my eeePC. Install the AHK Interpreter then save this script as a *.ahk file and run it.

Hotkey, LButton,, Off ; we only need this once the Win + MouseLeft combo has been triggered
return

+LButton::
Send, {LButton Down} ; Send a MOUSEDOWN event
OnExit("sendUpEvent") ; ensure the mouse button is not left in the 'down' state upon script exit
Hotkey, LButton,, On ; Activate Hotkey below
return

LButton::
sendUpEvent()
{
    OnExit("sendUpEvent", 0) ; removing the onExit handler here avoids unnecessarily sending a MOUSEUP upon exit
    Send, {LButton Up} ; Send a MOUSEUP event
    Hotkey, LButton,, Off ; switch back to normal left click behaviour
    LButtonHeldDown := false
}
2

While i think that keltari's and and mioxlav's answers are probably what you were aiming for I yet would like to bring vertical mice into the game.

After suffering from severe back-pain (not caused by an injury) while doing mouse-intensive work I've found using a vertical mouse a very big relief. It might take a few days 'til you are familiar with the altered position of your mouse-hand but after a while using a conventional mouse felt even more awkward, not to speak of using a trackpad.

There are plenty of products on the market, as a starting point I'd recommend looking at these:

There are of course also wireless versions of these available as well.

Ps: I am not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned nor do I sell their products or benefit from mentioning them in any way.

1

You can buy foot-operated switches that will work as mouse or keyboard buttons. You may find one of these more suitable than any software work-around.

  • 2
    Thanks but not what I asked. – Jason S Aug 22 '16 at 17:59
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    Similarly some gaming mice with mappable buttons will allow you to map additional buttons to click+hold – Chris H Aug 23 '16 at 8:31
0

All of these great answers seem pretty complex to me. I think your problem can be solved more easily by using CTRL+ALT keys. CTRL+ALT+X (scissors) to cut something; CTRL+ALT+C (copy) to copy it; CTRL+ALT+V (down arrow) to paste. There are a lot of others, but those are the ones I use constantly. This may eliminate much of the need to hold down the mouse key while dragging.

To limit the need to drag over a thing to select it, try double clicking on it, that will usually highlight a word or item; triple clicking selects a natural combination of words or objects. In this text box, triple selects an entire paragraph. Experiment, it may not work in all programs or OSes. I use Windows 10, but it worked in Vista and before that I don't remember.

once you have selected what you want to copy or move, type CTRL+ALT+C to copy it or X to move it. click the area you want to place it and type CTRL+ALT+V.

I hope this a simpler solution for you. Blessings

  • Some programs (drawing programs in particular) require click-and-drag to move or place items in particular locations on the screen, so keyboard shortcuts really don't help. – Jason S Aug 24 '16 at 18:37

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