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The Touchpad Indicator is a Ubuntu applet that allows to easily enable/disable your laptop touchpad.

On Ubuntu 10.10/11.04, launch the terminal and issue these commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:atareao/atareao
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install touchpad-indicator 

Once installed, you can launch this applet by opening Applications > Accessories > Touchpad Indicator for Ubuntu 10.10. On Ubuntu 11.04, you can start Touchpad Indicator using the dash.



You can also assign a hotkey in the Preferences window to enable/disable rapidly the touchpad of your laptop. If you want to disable the touchpad automatically once a mouse is connected, then check on "Disable touchpad when mouse plugged" in the Preferences window, then click OK:



That's it!

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