Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Review: Targus Bluetooth Laser Rechargable Notebook Mouse

I bought a new mouse for the laptop. The Targus Bluetooth Laser Rechargable Notebook Mouse. (What a mouthful!)

I bought it to use with Linux. (Fedora 9 specifically.) Here are my experiences so far...

The mouse comes in one of those invulnerable plastic clamshell cases. (Well, not invulnerable to a Leatherman xTi.) I hate that sort of package, but there is so little choice these days.

The instruction booklet for this is not the most useful. There are a few things that should be explained up front. Like how the rechargeable batteries are inserted.

Battery insertion

If you look at the contacts, you would think they both go the same way. They don't. Look for the little tiny "+" and "-" signs. That is the end that should be sticking out. The little pot metal springs are a pain to get lined up. Make sure they are contacting the battery leads before you put it back together.

Another thing about the mouse. The USB cable is for charging only. It does not act like a USB mouse in any way. The documentation is not clear about this at all.

Now comes the hard part... Connecting it to Linux.

I use Fedora 9 with Gnome. Find the Bluetooth icon in the upper right hand corner of your screen and right-click on it. Click on Preferences. Allow other devices to connect, then click on the Services tab. Highlight Input Services. Under the mouse there is a small black button. Push that with a pen point or other semi-pointy object. Now click Add. Your mouse should show up as Targus BT Laser Mouse. Highlight it and connect to it. Your mouse should work now.

You will probably need to adjust the mouse settings for your preferences. This mouse was much more sensitive than the previous mouse, so it was very jumpy. Adjusting the sensitivity in the Mouse control panel fixed that pretty fast.

The only annoyance so far is that it sometimes takes a bit of movement to get the mouse to wake up after it has been sitting for a minute or two.

The feel is nice. It is a bit small, but so are my hands. (I have short fingers from using a DecWriter in my youth.) The plastic has a velvet finish instead of a shiny smooth plastic. Makes for more comfortable use.

The mouse runs about $50. Not as expensive as some mice and more than others. Is it worth it? My judgement so far is yes. It will take a bit to get used to, but it seems like a good workable mouse. I will post if I change my mind.