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Middle Mouse button not working: Quick Fix

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  • 6 min read

The middle mouse button is a valuable tool that simplifies scrolling, tab management, and other functions with a single click.

However, it may occasionally stop working due to hardware issues, driver problems, registry errors, or software conflicts.

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through simple and practical solutions to fix the middle mouse button not working issue.

Check mouse hardware

If your middle mouse button is unresponsive, inspect your mouse hardware.

Unplug your mouse from your computer and connect it to another computer running the same Windows version. If the middle mouse button functions on the other computer, the issue lies within your computer’s settings or software. If not, consider cleaning or replacing your mouse.

To clean your mouse, use a soft cloth or cotton swab dipped in alcohol to gently wipe the mouse wheel and remove any dust or debris. For more extensive cleaning, exercise caution while opening the mouse and utilize compressed air or a soft brush to clean its internal components. Consult your mouse manual or online guides for instructions on opening and cleaning your specific mouse.

After cleaning, reconnect your mouse to your computer and test if the middle mouse button works. If it still does not function, proceed to the next solution.

Also read: What is Waves MaxxAudio?

Run the hardware troubleshooter

Windows offers a built-in troubleshooter to diagnose and resolve hardware and device-related problems.

To address the middle mouse button issue, follow these steps:

Step 1: Head to Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > View Devices and Printers.

Step 2: Locate your mouse in the list, right-click on it, and choose Troubleshoot.

Follow the on-screen instructions to run the troubleshooter and apply any recommended fixes. When you are done, restart your computer and test if the middle mouse button functions correctly.

Update mouse driver

An outdated or corrupted mouse driver can cause the middle mouse button to stop working.

To update the mouse driver, use one of the following methods:

Step 1: Open the Device Manager by searching for Device Manager in the taskbar search or by pressing Windows key + R and then entering devmgmt.msc.

Step 2: Expand the Mice and other pointing device category, find your mouse, right-click on it and select Update driver.

Step 3: Now, choose Select automatically for drivers to allow Windows to find and install the latest driver for your mouse.

Once you are done, restart the PC and check if the middle mouse button is functioning correctly. You can also use any third-party software like Driver Easy to install the driver for your mouse.

Also read: Mouse won’t move to the second monitor: 3 Fixes

Run System File Checker (SFC) scan

System File Checker (SFC) is a built-in tool that scans your system files and repairs any corrupted or missing ones. This can help fix various errors, including the Middle Mouse button not working issue.

To run SFC, follow these steps:

Step 1: Press the Windows key + X and then select Terminal.

Step 2: Next, type sfc /scannow and press Enter.

Wait for the scan to complete. It may take some time, depending on your system. If SFC finds and fixes any errors, restart your PC and see if the problem is solved.

Run the DISM command

Try running a DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management) command. This will scan and repair any corrupted system files that may affect the mouse and other drivers.

Head to our detailed guide on how to run the DISM command in Windows.

Also read: How to clean a CD?

Modify Registry settings

Corrupted or altered registry settings can also cause mouse-related issues. To address the middle mouse button problem, follow these steps:

Step 1: Press the Windows key + R to open the Run dialogue box. Here, type regedit to open the Registry Editor.

Step 2: Now, navigate to the following key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop and double-click on the WheelScrollLines value. Look at the screenshot to know the exact positions of the key and value.

Step 3: Change the value to 3 and press OK.

Close Registry Editor, restart your computer and check if the middle mouse button functions properly.

Run a malware scan

You can download any standard anti-virus on your computer and perform a quick or detailed scan to detect malicious programs preventing the middle mouse button from working efficiently.

Windows also provide an in-built virus detection software. Type Windows Security in the taskbar search space and click on the software. Here, select Virus and threat protection and then run a full scan.

The middle mouse button is a valuable tool, enhancing your browsing and working experience. If it stops working, the provided solutions can help you resolve the issue efficiently. Whether checking your mouse hardware, running the hardware troubleshooter, updating the mouse driver, or modifying registry settings, following these steps will likely restore your middle mouse button’s functionality.

Also read: How to turn off mouse acceleration in Windows 11?


Kumar Hemant

Deputy Editor at Candid.Technology. Hemant writes at the intersection of tech and culture and has a keen interest in science, social issues and international relations. You can contact him here: [email protected]