Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Make your cursor easier to see

I have excellent eyesight. I am not saying that to brag, I just want that fact out on the table.. so to speak. But, I have an old, everyday-go-everywhere, laptop with a smaller screen and a cursor that likes to wander and drift.. and sometimes I lose track of it (the cursor, not the laptop). Today’s quick tip will help those of you who sometimes lose track of your cursors too.

Tip of the day: It is easy to forget that almost every aspect of our PCs are adjustable (“tweakable”), and we spend our lives using the default settings: our XP desktop is a rolling hillside: our Taskbar is on the bottom.. one row high: etc., just like it came out of the box. But we can change things by finding the settings and adjusting them; often, these settings are found under “Preferences”, sometimes under “Options”, sometimes “Properties”, and even — oddly enough — under “Settings”.

Today I’m going to show you how I made my cursor easier to keep track of than the (default) white arrow. I’m going to make it black, bigger, and add a ‘finder’ tool to it, but you can select other options.. to your liking.
Start by going into your Control Panel (Start >Control Panel, or Start >Settings >Control Panel) and double-click on the “Mouse” icon. (You may have to switch to “Use Classic view”.) This makes sense when you remember that it is the mouse which moves the cursor.

The mouse Properties window will open. The cursor, and its behavior, are adjusted using the two middle tabs — Pointers, and Pointer Options.
On the Pointers tab, use the drop-down arrow to select a “Scheme” for your cursor. For ease of seeing, I have selected “Black, extra large”. Experiment a little to find one you like, as you can see a ‘preview’ of the “Scheme” on the right. When I click on “Apply”, my cursor will change from a smallish white arrow to a decent-sized black arrow.

Because my old, well-worn laptop doesn’t travel well anymore, sometimes my cursor will — with a mind of its own — jump to one corner of my screen and disappear from view. To help me find it on these occasions I have turned on a ‘cursor finder’ tool.
Now, when I hit my Ctrl key, a series of rings (briefly) appear around the cursor’s position.
To turn this feature on, click on the Pointer Options tab, and place a check in the bottom checkbox. Then click on “Apply”.. and then “OK”.

That’s it. You’re done.

Today’s free link: Those of you who do not have such terrific vision may find the Advanced Magnifier a useful addition to your computer.

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.

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February 7, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, keyboards and mice, PC, tech, Vista, Windows, XP | , , , | 4 Comments