Multitouch gestures with the Dell XPS 13 on Arch Linux

  1. Install the linux-xps13-archlinux kernel (now in the AUR)

    Note: Since I wrote this, it’s possible that the patched kernel now has more features than only touchpad support.

  2. Install xf86-input-synaptics and, from AUR, touchegg and touchegg-gce-git (this last one is to be able to configure gestures with the graphic interface).

  3. Edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf

    Section "InputClass"
            Identifier "touchpad catchall"
            Driver "synaptics"
            MatchIsTouchpad "on"
            Option "TapButton1" "1"
            Option "TapButton2" "0"
            Option "TapButton3" "0"
            Option "ClickFinger2" "0"
            Option "ClickFinger3" "0"
    
    
    # This option is recommend on all Linux systems using evdev, but cannot be
    # enabled by default. See the following link for details:
    # http://who-t.blogspot.com/2010/11/how-to-meta:ignore-configuration-errors.html
            MatchDevicePath "/dev/input/event*"
    
    
    EndSection
    
  4. Configure your gestures with Touchègg

    Here’s my ~/.config/touchegg/touchegg.conf:

  5. Add to your session (using gnome-session-properties for instance):

    • touchegg

The real improvement is that I can use three-finger tapping to simulate the middle-click mouse button which is used for quick pasting or for opening links in a new tab.

As far as “pinching” is concerned, it does not work reliably at all for me.

comment 1

Hey Hugo, I tied this on gnome 3.12. I got it to work, but whenever I touch the top of a window (the part that’s blank on the same level as the x) the window and gnome shell crash. Any idea what could be wrong?

Comment by Trevor
comment 2

Hi Trevor. I don’t know what’s causing this: does it happen with the dell-xps-13 kernel patch alone, or is it caused by touchegg?

I have updated my touchegg config, so it’s now changed in the gist as well. Also, xf86-input-synaptics has been updated since I wrote this, and for me it’s not working as smoothly as it should (I’ve opened an issue on github).

I guess the best place to start investigating is https://wiki.gnome.org/Projects/GnomeShell/Debugging

Comment by hugo