less is more or usable clickpad


One of the unfair advantages of Apple hardware is the quality of their touchpads.

The synaptics clickpad in my yoga 2 ain’t Apple-quality, that’s for sure. It’s still quite nice to use, though, but the default configuration is pretty conservative. Here’s what makes it working for me on xenial with x11:

  • The libinput driver. Tweaking the synaptics one is an interesting exercise if one has hours for experimentation, but, ultimately, one will fail. So, let’s get rid of synaptics and make sure it’s libinput (requires X11 session restart):
sudo apt purge xserver-xorg-input-synaptics
sudo apt install xserver-xorg-input-libinput
  • No soft buttons. Soft buttons are evil. One-, two- and three-finger clicks are fine. Also, tapping is good.
#!/usr/bin/env bash

xinput --set-prop "SynPS/2 Synaptics TouchPad" "libinput Click Method Enabled" 0 1
xinput --set-prop "SynPS/2 Synaptics TouchPad" "libinput Tapping Enabled" 1

(I’m lazy, so this gets executed on every login instead of being put into an X11 configuration snippet.)

go the fuck to sleep


intro, where complaints are made excessively

Note: this short article in no way criticises systemd. It’s not systemd's fault, that – while it provides a nice framework for managing various power states – it does not come with any built-in functionality besides bare kernel interface. If that works for you and you don’t need to handle any quirks of your hardware, you don’t need this article.

But I digress. Until systemd's suspend and hibernate will provide the same functionality as pm-utils, one might just want to tell systemd to use pm-utils. It’s easy enough to do.

the actual part where things are described

Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for any damage this might do to any system. I’m assuming that the reader knows what they’re doing and are reasonably familiar with command line interface and systemd.

First, let’s install pm-utils. On Debian-based systems apt-get install pm-utils will do nicely.

Second, let’s locate the relevant service files. On Debian-based systems one or more of the following files should do:


As I’m not using hibernation or hybrid sleep, I’ve decided to override only the suspend service so I’ve put the following into /etc/systemd/system/systemd-suspend.service:

#  Use pm-utils instead of systemd-sleep



The only relevant change here is to replace the systemd-sleep binary in the ExecStart= stanza with pm-suspend.

Reloading the systemd configuration (systemd daemon-reload) or restarting it (systemd daemon-reexec) should do the trick. (One could probably also use systemctl edit systemd-suspend.service, but I’m new to this whole systemd thingy.)

(Note: this is a shortcut. It’s absolutely possible to port all functionality of pm-utils to use the framework provided by systemd – I just haven’t had enough time to do that. See systemd-sleep(8) and systemd-sleep.conf(5) manpages for more information.)