How to Middle-click on Touchpad in Windows 11

Windows 11 supports several touchpad gestures. Here is how to set up middle-click on the touchpad in Windows 11 (with pictures).

When it comes to a regular mouse, the left and right clicks are generally used for everything. Third comes the scroll wheel. With a single click, you can select or execute the target, and with a double-click, you can execute, see extended information, or open a menu of the target. The touchpad is nothing different. The left and right clicks on a touchpad are emulated with single and double taps, while the scroll wheel is simulated with two-finger swipes. The good thing is, almost every Windows user knows the default left and right-click behavior.

For whatever reason, the middle-click is one of the most ignored and used features of a mouse or touchpad. Though most don’t know, you can do a lot of things with a middle click. For example, you can open links in a new tab, close browser tabs, open new instances of an application from the taskbar, free scroll in applications and web pages, paste text in specific applications, etc. All in all, the middle-click is just as helpful as the left and right clicks. It is beneficial to add middle-click functionality to the laptop touchpad and improve your workflow and productivity.

On a physical mouse, the scroll wheel also acts as a middle-click. On a touchpad, you have to configure a tap gesture to work as the middle-click manually. The good thing is, the new Windows 11 Settings app allows you to configure the touchpad tap gestures to middle-click. All you have to do is set up a three-figure or four-finger tap gesture as the middle-click. It is straightforward to do.

So, without further ado, this easy how-to guide will show the steps to enable or turn on middle-click on a laptop touchpad in Windows 11.

Jump to:

Turn on the touchpad middle-click on Windows 11

To turn on the touchpad middle-click on a Windows 11 laptop, you must assign a three-finger or four-finger tap gesture. You can do that directly from the Windows 11 Settings app. I will show both. Use the tap gesture you like. All you have to do is select the “Middle-click” option from the dropdown menu, and you are good to go. Here is how to do it.

Assign three-finger tap gesture for middle-click

To add the three-finger tap gesture as the middle-click in Windows 11, follow the below steps.

  1. Use “Start + I” to open Settings.
  2. Select “Bluetooth & Devices” on the sidebar.
  3. Click the “Touchpad” option on the main panel.
  4. Click on the “Three-finger gestures” menu.
  5. Select “Middle mouse button” from the Taps dropdown menu.
  6. Changes are saved automatically.
  7. Close the Settings app.
  8. From now, you can tap on the touchpad with three fingers to middle-click.

Below are the same steps in a bit more detail:

First thing, open Windows 11 Settings. For that, right-click the Start menu and select the “Settings” option. Alternatively, use the “Start + I” keyboard shortcut or click the Network icon on the taskbar and click the “Settings” option. After opening the Settings app, select the “Bluetooth & devices” tab on the sidebar and click on the “Touchpad” option.

open Windows 11 touchpad settings

On this page, click on the “Three-finger gestures” option to expand it. As you can tell, this menu is where you modify how the three-finger gestures work.

expand three finger touchpad gestures

Now, select the “Middle mouse button” option from the “Taps” dropdown menu. There is no save button; the changes are saved automatically.

three finger tap to middle-click on Windows 11 touchpad

That is it. From now, whenever you want to middle-click, tap with three fingers on your laptop’s touchpad.

Assign four-finger tap gesture for middle-click

To make the four-finger tap gesture as the middle-click in Windows 11, follow the below steps. It will be done in no time.

  1. Open Windows 11 Settings.
  2. Go to the “Bluetooth & devices > Touchpad” page.
  3. Click on the “Four-finger gestures” option.
  4. Select “Middle mouse button” from the Taps dropdown menu.
  5. Changes are saved automatically.
  6. Close the Settings app.
  7. From now, tap with four fingers on the touchpad to middle-click.

Detailed steps:

You can add middle-click to the touchpad from the Windows 11 Settings app. So, we need to open it to start. For that, either press the “Windows key + I” shortcut or search for “Settings” in the Start menu. After that, go to the “Bluetooth & devices > Touchpad” page. As you can tell from the page name, this is where you can configure all the touchpad gestures and taps.

Click on the “Four-finger gestures” option to expand it. Here, you will find all the gestures supported by Windows 11. Since we want to configure touchpad middle-click, select the “Mouse middle click” option from the “Taps” dropdown menu.

four finger tap to middle-click on Windows 11 touchpad

The changes are automatically saved. You can close the Settings app.

From now, you can tap with four fingers on the touchpad to middle-click on a Windows 11 laptop.

Useful middle-click shortcuts for Windows 11

After adding middle-click functionality to the touchpad in Windows 11, you might be wondering what you can do with it. There are a lot of things you can do with a middle-click. Below are some of the specific actions you can perform using mouse or touchpad middle-click on Windows 11.

  • Open a new application instance on the taskbar: Middle-clicking on an application icon on the taskbar will open a second instance of that application. For example, to open a second instance of File Explorer, middle-click on the File Explorer icon on the taskbar.
  • Open a link in the new tab: In a browser, middle-click on a link to open it in a new tab. As you can tell, it is far better and more accessible than right-clicking and selecting the “Open in new tab” option.
  • Close a tab in the browser: Middle-clicking on a browser tab will close it immediately. You no longer need to click on that little “X” icon on a browser tab.
  • Auto-scroll in web pages and supported applications: In web pages and supported applications, you can auto-scroll using the middle mouse click. Middle-click inside a web page and move the mouse or swipe up or down to start the auto-scroll in that direction. Moving the mouse or swiping on the touchpad in a direction will either change the auto-scroll to that direction or increase the scroll speed.
  • Open all bookmarks in a folder at once: Middle-clicking on a bookmark folder in Chrome, Edge, or Firefox will open all the links in that folder at once. A pretty handy shortcut. For example, I use this shortcut almost every day to start my workflow every morning.
  • Use AutoHotKey to change the middle-click functionality: If you want to, you can use applications like AutoHotKey to rebind the middle-click to do many things. You can even vary its functionality depending on the application.

The above use cases are not exhaustive, but some of the most common and useful middle-click functionalities in Windows 11. If you think I missed your favorite middle mouse click usage, comment below and let me know.

That is all. It is that simple to add or turn on middle-click on the touchpad in Windows 11.

I hope this easy Windows 11 guide helped you.

If you are stuck or need some help, comment below, and I will try to help as much as possible.

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