Help a sick mouse to get "wheel" soon


The symptoms...

Does your mouse sound like a pepper-mill when it moves? Does the on-screen cursor look like its having a fit? Does your mouse suddenly stop while dragging items? Does it feel like you are dragging your fingers across sandpaper? Have you ever seen a line of ant attempt to carry off your mouse? Are there chocolate chips under your mouse mat?

Well, don't despair.... Follow Dr. TAD's mouse recovery program and in less than 1 (ONE) hour your mouse will have a six-pack, a deep tan and be surrounded by female mice all wanting to get their paws on your cheeze.


Before starting any vigorous mouse movements please consult your doctor. In the unlikely event of a mouse heart-attack (or to use the correct medical term: "a cord-ic arrest") please seek professional medical help immediately!!

The six-step program.

As with any addiction, the addict goes through a number of key stages. All of these need to be addressed in order to break your cookie addition.

Here is what Dr. Tooth (the short, mouse sex expert) has to say:

Step 1: Denial

First the user will deny there is a problem with the mouse. This is due to the strict social conditioning which makes the addict hide their slobbish eating habits. If they did admit to having a 'crumby' mouse, they would also have to admit to using the mouse-mat to eat their various sugary snacks from. Of course any sensible person would never bring food stuff of any description into the same room as a PC. (But then again, most coders aren't sensible people. If they were, they wouldn't spend countless late nights trying to persuade their PC that their buggy routines should work perfectly, with phrazes like "Hey, that should never happen!", my personal favourite "You stoopid machine" and the classic "Why is it doing that?").

Step 2: Acknowledgement

Firstly you need to confront your ugly, deepest, darkess secret... So please, everyone stand up, place your right hand on the mouse mat and say:

"Yes, I have sinned. I have eaten cookies, I have dropped some crumbs and.. yes, I am a coding slob who forces his poor, innocent mouse to walk across a pool of sugary food stains. I am a software slob!!"

Ah, now doesn't that feel better?

Step 3: Excuses

There may be some of you out there who are true cookie addicts, a social misfit who takes perverse pleasure in hearing the dry mouse rollers squeal with pain while dragging its biege-white body over the nude picture which covers your cheap mouse-mat surface

If only the MLF (Mouse Liberation Front) knew about this hardware cruelty...

There are the usual excuses for slacking off and not completing this program. Such as "Oh, the mouse is crap", "Hey, I will clean it tomorrow..", "I am really busy right now", "I blame M1scro$oft Windows" and of course "The mice just needs a little lubrication, it really likes crumbs".

Step 4: Confrontation

Sooner or later your vile, crime against perpherials will be discovered. A close friend or family member is usually the first to notice the warning signs, secret midnight raids on the cookie-jar, a fondness for crunchy snacks and a collection of "Mice & crumbs" jazz-mags hidden under your bed.

Step 5: Mouse therapy

Let's tackle the problem in two parts. Firstly the mouse-mat.

1) Make sure you have a good hard mouse-mat. (something with a rubber backing and a surface like cardboard is IMHO one of the best types to go for. I have a cheap Commodore mat which is perfect and cost a laughable 1-UK-pound!!!).

2) Clean the backing rubber by shaking the mouse mat. (This will remove any crumbs embedded in the backing.)

3) Clean the surface using a window-cleaning type spray. (You can use some warm water and a little vinegar instead, this mixture is also great for cleaning your monitor screen.)

4) Make sure the surface is dry, otherwise it will collect dust faster than a M1cro$oft bug report.

Secondly the mouse itself.

1) Undo the ball cover and take out the mouse ball. (You can clean the ball using the same water + vinegar mixture.)

2) Place the mouse ball to one side and let it dry throughly. (A wet ball is a guaranteed way to pick up a ton of dust.)

3) Turn the mouse over and remove it's case by undoing 1...3 screws. (Most mice have a single screw at the back. The top must be tilted up from the back in order to get it off the two plastic lugs which holds it in place near the cord.)

4) Clean the 2 rollers and spring-wheel using the vinegar mixture. (The easiest way is to place a few drops of the liquid onto a good cloth/old T-shirt and hold this against each roller while you turn it by pushing the small holed disc-wheels round with a finger or thumb. If you see any black lines of 'gunk' on the rollers then just scratch them off using a finger-nail or the edge of a piece of paper or cardboard.)

5) Repeat the same process on the larger spring-ed wheel. (This is the thing which pushes the mouse ball against the motion rollers. If this is 'gunky' then your on-screen cursor will jerk more often than PeeWee-Herman during a month-long Porn festival.)

6) Dry all the rollers and the spring-wheel.

7) You may wish to clean the mouse-cord too. (It doesn't help to make your mouse movement any smoother, but its good to do when you are trying to sell your machine to someone else.)

8) Clean the mouse ball panel, replace the mouse ball and twist the round panel back in place.

Step 6: "One day at a time.."

After you have just cleaned your mouse you may notice the movement has suddenly got a LOT worse. Don't worry, your cleaning has probably loosened some gunk which you missed the first time. So clean the mouse again and enjoy some nice smooth, crunch-free mouse movements...

Keep it "Wheel"

Recently I've bought a nice new Logitech mouse, one with a middle wheel (which also acts like a 3rd button). I was a little sceptical about the wheel idea, but it is truely a brilliantly simple idea which makes surfing 10x better. Just turn the wheel down a few clicks and you can scroll down long webpages or huge text files with ease. The beauty of the wheel is that you don't have to keep dragging the mouse around the mat, also you don't have to keep moving over to the scroll-bar in order to move up or down a page. I highly recommend buying one if your old mouse has been visited by the "rodent reaper".

Closing words

You may wish to visit the nice Tweakfiles site. It has lots of nice little utilities to help speed up your PC, repair/restore BIOSes, gather information about your hardware and other groovy stuff. Definitely worth a visit if you enjoy the odd game of QUAKE 1/2/3, HALF-LIFE or UNREAL etc.... (in fact, even if you never play games check it out!)

Check out the nice PS2RATE plus utility (only if you have a PS/2 mouse). You can use this EXCELLENT program to change the sampling rate of your PS/2 mouse. Usually Windoze uses a rate of 40Hz or 80Hz, but try 60Hz (the same rate as my video mode refresh rate) as the default setting and watch your on-screen mouse cursor suddenly become 10x smoother!!! Perfect for all you graphical-gods out there... Try it for an hour and you will NEVER want to remove this superb little utility from your harddrive.

Oh, the entire program is less than 350Kb. #:o) So click on this link and try it out for yourself...

Happy "gunk-free" mousing!!