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ALPS Driver Guru/Modder Needed!


NighTalon

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The HP Mini 311 has pinch-to-zoom and two-finger scrolling on an ALPS trackpad.

I'm guessing there may be hardware differences because certain driver versions disable tap-to-click on my Toshiba but not on my Dell. Will provide a table of driver versions and results on a Toshiba Tecra M7 and a Dell Precision M4400. In Linux, neither trackpad registers multiple fingers, but does output "w" width and "z" pressure values. One driver version BSODs the Dell.

Here is a version and revision history: {title in bold, version info in italics, notes in (parentheses)}

Latest Toshiba Driver:

10/1/2009: 7.102.302.203

(seems to work well on all tested models, no circular scroll, no custom GUI)

(if you install this driver after a version that freezes your activity cursor, such as the Acer 105 driver, this package will not fix this cosmetic issue)

(Windows 7/XP only, (says XP compatibility, but untested) no Vista; unclear whether this is an installer check or a basic incompatibility)

(therefore, please uninstall before installing this driver)

Oldest Dell Driver Listed on this Forum:

01/15/2009: 7.102.101.216 (A06 of some sort)

(untested; allegedly has circular scroll/zoom)

(ALPS release notes mention internal models called "Pacino" "Caffeine" and "AM3 series")

Next Oldest Dell Driver Listed on this Forum:

03/10/2009: 7.104.102 (A02 of some sort)

(untested; listed as supporting Dell and Compal; allegedly has no circular scroll/zoom, but possibly has Dell GUI)

Intermediate Dell Driver Listed on this Forum:

UNKOWN DATE: 7.x2.101.216 (A09 of some sort)

(untested; no ALPS release notes; don't believe the Dell release date, it usually doesn't correspond with the driver release date; black-style icons are available, including for circular scroll)

Second Most Recent Dell Driver Listed on this Forum:

7/29/2009: 7.102.101.223 (A11 of some sort)

(tested; has circular scroll/zoom; frozen cursors; probably has resume-from-standby bug; Dell GUI)

Most Recent Dell Driver Listed on this Forum:

11/20/2009: 7.102.101.228 (A12 of some sort)

(currently in use on my Dell Precision M4400 even if Acer version is more functional and Toshiba version just works)

(allegedly no return from standby issue; frozen cursors)

Most Recent HP Driver Listed on this Forum/Mini 311 Download Page:

08/18/2009: 7.105.1711.118

(previously in use on my Dell; scrolling worked quite well, but very limited configuration options)

(animated cursors, but no circular scroll/zoom)

---Drivers Below this Point Allegedly Support "Two-Way" Multi-touch---

Original HP Mini 311 Drivers saved from Factory XP Install:

07/08/2009: 7.5.1711.113

(does not support 64-bit OS so cannot test at the moment)

(allegedly provides multi-touch out of the box on Mini 311 netbooks; will test when I have access to a Verizon store)

ALPS "Two-Way" Drivers Now Available on HP's Site:

06/29/2009: 7.205.1724.106

(worked until I changed some configuration options; then pointing device ceased to function semi-permanently)

(reinstalling these after uninstalling the Russian drivers still resulted in BSOD)

Russian Toshiba Driver Accessed Via myhpmini.com:

04/02/2009: 7.105.303.105

(good reviews from HP Mini users)

(caused first BSODs on my Dell Precision)

How I Plan to Proceed:

Download all the available drivers for XP or later, starting with Windows 7 drivers, from all the manufacturers that support ALPS trackpads, namely Dell, HP, Sony, Toshiba, MS Windows Update. (there may be others) Then I plan to create a spreadsheet with all of the attributes from all of the driver sets. I will test as many as I can/have time for. Note that I don't have any non-virtualized XP or Vista installs to test, but I may set aside a hard drive for this purpose over my Christmas break. In my Excel file I will have two worksheets, one for software one for hardware. If I don't buy a Mini 311 over break, I will have the following hardware to probe in the second worksheet: Dell Precision M4400, GF's Dell Studio 15, GF's Sony VGN-ZCXXX, Toshiba Tecra M7.

**Hardware Characteristics to Document:**

-DevID/Device Manager Info

-Data listed under Linux (including characteristics listed after running "synclient -m 100")

-Functionality under MacOS Voodoo and Dell Mini trackpad drivers (may be unavailable for Studio 15 only due to incompatible GPU)

-Ability of driver versions to function on given hardware

**Driver Characteristics to Document:**

-Version and date

-Release notes

-Data from .inf files

-Type of GUI/control panel

-Support for pinch-zoom

-Support for two-finger scroll

-Support for circular scroll

-Support for browser functions

-Support for zoom

-Level of customizability

-OS support

-------------Release Notes from Russian/Toshiba Version----------------

are attached. They were too long to paste in this post.

Release.txt

Edited by NighTalon
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  • 2 weeks later...

Alps on 311

8/18/2009

7.5.1711.118

HP/Win7

AU1101

PNP0F13

4&5c91eb2&0

Alps 2-way on DM3

6/29/2009

7.205.1724.106

AUI2401

PNP0F13

4&1A8999A2&0

I think I'm too lazy to do all this testing. I'll test the 2-way drivers on my Toshiba when I get back to school.

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  • 2 weeks later...

So I ran synclient on the HP Mini 311 at my local VZ store, but it thinks SHMConfig is disabled.

I re-tested it on an older ALPS and an older Synaptics pad, and SHMConfig is enabled, so basically I think the Synaptics driver isn't loading.

When I run cat /proc/bus/input/devices , there's nothing about ALPS, just a generic PS/2 mouse. I guess I should have tested side-scroll to confirm this; also I didn't have tpconfig installed.

Note: tpconfig, I have since learned, would make no difference because it requires SHMConfig, which wouldn't load.

Edited by NighTalon
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  • 2 weeks later...

More updates:

The Sony VPCF11JFX/B also has the multitouch ALPS, with a driver at 7/26/2009. It was a 7.105.505.304 version posted in 12/2009.

This driver did not cause a BSOD on my Dell, but the touchpad and track-stick became unresponsive. (I had to use an installer extractor to bypass the system model check)

Here is my breakdown of the version numbers:

Version 7 is designed for WinXP and later.

7.5/7.X05 versions are multi-touch/two-way.

7.2/7.X02 versions are single-touch/one-way.

The third "octet" or the number after the second decimal is the OEM reference number. 100s are Dell, 300s are Toshiba, 500s are Sony, and 1700s are HP.

The fourth "octet" is the build number. Especially the last digit. I don't know what the first digit signifies.

The Sony driver also did not result in an AUI* listing in device manager; I'm not sure why. Maybe ALPS cleaned up their drivers a bit.

I noticed on a forum that allegedly ALPS trackpads have never produced "w" or contact width values, and this seems to be the case in synclient. Of course it was not the case with the last single-touch Synaptics 7.0 pad I used...using w values to simulate multi-touch would be fairly easy with the right algorithm to monitor pressure and width. I think the VoodooPS2 guys have done this successfully in the OSX86 community. That said, this driver did not work on my Dell, I think thanks to the presence of a track-stick. But basically I think I've given up trying to get multi-touch on my trackpads; I'm convinced the hardware is very different from the new ALPS two-way hardware.

That leads to one final question: did ALPS license the technology from Synaptics again like they did with their original trackpads? To this day, certain Synaptics driver versions will attempt to install on ALPS pads, seeing them as "Generic trackpads." For a while, some people found these drivers to work better than their ALPS counterparts, however, I once managed to disable a keyboard inadvertently with such a setup.

I will inquire again with the ALPS sales staff, but of course they will likely again tell me to "take up any support issues with the OEM/manufacturer, and use the appropriate OEM drivers." No way in hell I'm doing that on a Dell.

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  • 3 months later...

Best Solution for Dell Laptops

I think it's pretty clear that Dell's ALPS drivers for Windows 7 suck.

True there's a new GUI.

True the resume-from-standby bug is fixed.

However, there is no way to disable the touchpad while typing!

If you want better drivers than Dell has to offer and you want full functionality, go to the following website:

support.acer.com

Then choose the Windows 7 ALPS driver for the Aspire 5741G.

This was released on 3/9/2010 and has drivers dating from January 8, 2010. They are more recent and more fully-functional than any Toshiba or Dell drivers I have found so far. Sony also uses ALPS trackpads, but drivers are harder to find on their website, and the only recent ALPS drivers seem to be multi-touch-exclusive. Also, there is a system-verification-check on all of Sony's driver packages.

This driver is unbranded, which is nice.

You should uninstall your previous ALPS driver, reboot, then install this one with administrator privileges, then reboot.

If you are asked whether you want to run the driver files (such as apoint.exe, etc.) just uncheck "Always ask" and hit run for the 2 or 3 executables that require permissions. Note that you will never have to do this again after reboot!

This driver works well with all NON-multitouch ALPS trackpads, regardless of age. Note that the "disable trackpad while typing" option is not user-accessible in this driver, but it is permanently on, which I think is ideal. If you don't like this default, switch back to the Dell drivers. I also like that you can disable tapping on the TouchStick while typing. (this option is visible to the user if you have a TouchStick)

I guess it is also obvious that this driver works equally well with TouchStick and non-TouchStick touchpads. I have not yet tested it with multitouch pads, so I don't know if it will work, although the "Gestures" tab is there.

Note that if you try installing more recent ALPS drivers intended for multitouch pads, you will likely get a BSoD (blue-screen) and be forced to boot with "last known good configuration" then uninstall the drivers, then install these.

Barrett

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  • 2 months later...

How did I miss this post.

Looks like you have dug a lot of useful info up on ALPs drivers. I have one in my VGN-Z model Vaio Z. I have been looking at modding up some new ones. All the little variances in each driver package are interesting.

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  • 9 months later...
Guest baconismidog

Well Done Barret, Well Done...

This still doesn't give me multitouch as if I had a synaptics, but this driver's 1 finger scroll is 100x better than that crap Dell has on their website.

Thanks bro

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