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How long do your computer mice last?

Displaying poll results.
Less than a year
  484 votes / 1%
1-2 years
  2230 votes / 7%
2-3 years
  3335 votes / 11%
3-4 years
  3445 votes / 11%
4-5 years
  2833 votes / 9%
5+ years
  13751 votes / 47%
Until the day after warranty expires
  955 votes / 3%
I only use trackpads, you insensitive clod!
  1980 votes / 6%
29013 total votes.
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  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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How long do your computer mice last?

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  • meeses (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The optical mice last much longer than the old roller-ball mice

    • Re:meeses (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ackthpt (218170) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @03:14PM (#45662739) Homepage Journal

      The optical mice last much longer than the old roller-ball mice

      I've had to use a mechanical mouse again, last time I used one was about 7 years ago. Geez. These things suck! I have to clean the contact rollers every day of the lint, skin oil, yuck, wut? and whatever else the ball picks up and sticks to those things. How did we ever suffer through those days, before optical or tablets?

      • Re:meeses (Score:5, Interesting)

        by NixieBunny (859050) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @03:50PM (#45663081) Homepage
        Yes, they were atrocious. I often found myself cleaning *other peoples' mice* just to be able to use them. Ewww!!
        • Re:meeses (Score:4, Interesting)

          by ackthpt (218170) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @05:19PM (#45664001) Homepage Journal

          Yes, they were atrocious. I often found myself cleaning *other peoples' mice* just to be able to use them. Ewww!!

          Years back I'd often go to someone's desk to try to show them something or change a system setting and found their mouse was all bockety. A twist of the bottom plate and a few seconds scraping big chunks of gross stuff out and they couldn't believe how wonderful the mouse worked, never mind what I was sent over to sort out or demonstrate for them.

          • by istartedi (132515)

            Fond memory from when I was in support:

            Customer: my keys are stuck, sorry.

            Me: Have you tried turning your keyboard upside down and shaking it?

            (sound of customer doing such).

            Customer: Ewww, there's oh, gross... .

            I don't remember if the call continued or she hung up. I bet her keyboard worked better after that though, or got replaced.

        • by mcl630 (1839996)

          So you're not "down with OPM"?

      • The optical mice last much longer than the old roller-ball mice

        I've had to use a mechanical mouse again, last time I used one was about 7 years ago. Geez. These things suck! I have to clean the contact rollers every day of the lint, skin oil, yuck, wut? and whatever else the ball picks up and sticks to those things. How did we ever suffer through those days, before optical or tablets?

        Try using one for very long when you have a cat. You left "cat hair" out of your list so I'm guessing you don't have a cat. Semmantically kind of funny when a mouse chokes on a cat hair ball.

        Cheers,
        Dave

      • I used to have one that detected the motion of the ball by shining a light down the a cylinder that the ball rolled. This made it very accurate, but it had the down side that in bright sunlight enough light got through the white plastic to permanently trigger the sensor, so it never saw an occlusion and thought that the ball was stationary. A nocturnal mouse.
      • We had an excuse to procrastinate before we had Wikipedia available.

    • by Uloi (1996356)
      I toss them after a year or 2 even if they are working. Like glasses, you can only get them so clean after a while.
    • I actually had an optical mouse die. The left button micro-switch started failing so a click of the button didn't always translate into a button event. Really annoying when it first started to go because I was always wondering if I had just "missed" whatever I was attempting to click. Finally started seeing some really obvious things.

      Cheers,
      ave

      • by wagnerrp (1305589)
        I keep loosing the middle button on Logitech mice. It usually ends up with me reprogramming one of the thumb buttons for middle click.
        • by ibwolf (126465)

          I bought a Logitech mouse/keyboard package in 2002. The thing lasted, without any issues, for 10 years. Loved it. Wound up replacing the mouse with another Logitech mouse, not six months in the middle button started failing. Sounds like this isn't an isolated incident and that Logitech isn't making mice like they used to. Shame.

    • The optical mice last much longer than the old roller-ball mice

      This may be true, but I've never had anything go wrong with a roller-ball mouse than couldn't be fixed by cleaning out a bit of lint from the ball.

      My current optical mouse has lasted through at least 3-4 computers, possibly more.

  • by ackthpt (218170) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @03:11PM (#45662709) Homepage Journal

    What is this "mouse" thing of which you speak?

    • I use laptop with touchpad. What is this "mouse" of which you speak?

      • by wagnerrp (1305589)
        It's this wonderful, accurate, precise pointing device, that should be packed with every laptop, and used if at all possible.
      • I use laptop with touchpad. What is this "mouse" of which you speak?

        I found the touchpad to be too annoyingly oversensitive, so I prefer to use a good old wireless Logitech Trackman Marble T-RA18 with mine. I was surprised at how quickly I took to using a trackball.

        On my gaming rig though, I am rather fond of my Logitech G300, and really should shop around for a spare just in case this one ever bites the dust...spaaaaaace cadet...

    • by bobbied (2522392)

      What is this "mouse" thing of which you speak?

      "Use the mouse? How quaint." Lt Cmdr Scott.

  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @03:16PM (#45662767)
    This memo [snopes.com] was supposedly from IBM on how to replace and clean mouse balls. It is not clear whether it was serious or in jest.

    Mouse balls are now available as FRU. Therefore, if a mouse fails to operate or should it perform erratically, it may need a ball replacement. Because of the delicate nature of this procedure, replacement of mouse balls should only be attempted by properly trained personnel.

    Before proceeding, determine the type of mouse balls by examining the underside of the mouse. Domestic balls will be larger and harder than foreign balls. Ball removal procedures differ depending upon manufacturer of the mouse. Foreign balls can be replaced using the pop-off method. Domestic balls are replaced using the twist-off method. Mouse balls are not usually static sensitive. However, excessive handling can result in sudden discharge. Upon completion of ball replacement, the mouse may be used immediately.

    It is recommended that each replacer have a pair of spare balls for maintaining optimum customer satisfaction, and that any customer missing his balls should suspect local personnel of removing these necessary items.

    To re-order, specify one of the following:

    P/N 33F8462 - Domestic Mouse Balls
    P/N 33F8461 - Foreign Mouse Balls

    • by NeoMorphy (576507)

      I first saw that memo in the late 80s. One of the IBM field engineers brought it in, it was hilarious!

    • by CanHasDIY (1672858) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @05:33PM (#45664141) Homepage Journal

      I'd say legitimate memo, written by someone with a sense of humor.

      Legitimate because domestically and foreign-produced ball mice did have distinct differences in how the ball was made, and what it was made of. Used to frustrate the hell out of me as a kid trying to swap enough parts from three broken mice to make one that works.

      Someone with a sense of humor because... well, the obvious.

    • [i]It is recommended that each replacer have a pair of spare balls for maintaining optimum customer satisfaction, and that any customer missing his balls should suspect local personnel of removing these necessary items.[/i] So what the memo is saying is, women shouldn't service mice, because they don't have the balls for it.
  • I've been using the TrackPoint as my primary pointing device on Dell Laptops or ThinkPads for over ten years, so my mice don't get a lot of use. I use synergy [synergy-foss.org], so I can control my desktop and laptop using just the laptop keyboard.

    But, I still have a couple of working keyboards that are over twenty years old, and mice that are nearly twenty years old.

  • Who uses mice? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by techno-vampire (666512) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @04:14PM (#45663329) Homepage
    I've never bought or connected a mouse to any computer I've owned. I've always used trackballs (not trackpads, TYVM) and find them far, far more reliable than any mouse I've ever used at work.
    • Re:Who uses mice? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @05:11PM (#45663935)
      Indeed. Where's the "when they pry my Logitech Trackman Marble FX from my cold, dead fingers" option?
      • by danomac (1032160)

        I feel the same about my Cordless Optical Trackman. It's finally starting to act up after many, many years and I found out there's no replacement for it. Not only that, all the other trackballs I've seen suck. I don't know what I'm going to do when it stops working - maybe get a touch screen? [/sarcasm] It's better than using a mouse.

        I've always wondered why they made it cordless when it doesn't move...

    • by tylikcat (1578365)

      I'm surprisingly fond of Thinkpad clit mice. Er, trackpoints? Damn, what is the polite name?

      (Okay, surprisingly? Heh.)

      • by MonkeyPaw (8286)

        I always called them mouse nipples.

      • by LazLong (757)

        +1 for the clit. I first learned to work the clit when I bought a Toshiba Satellite Pro 2400CT back in '94 that had a green clit. I totally fell in love with the clit as it allowed me to mouse around without the need for a hand to leave the keyboard, which I'd think a great deal of touch-typists would appreciate. I loved it so much I went out and bought an IBM keyboard with a nice red clit that cost me over a $100; which back then was 1/3 of a month's rent. Since then every Intel PC keyboard that has been a

    • by iksbob (947407)

      I've been using Kensington trackballs since the early '90s. I actually prefer the old mechanical Turbo Mouse line over the current optical Expert Mouse design. The Turbo's large stainless steel rollers didn't collect nearly as much gunk as the little plastic beads in the Expert Mouse.

  • I just replaced a 5+ year old Apple Mighty Mouse - the first Apple mouse I've ever worn out (bluetooth was getting flakey). On the other hand, the mice that I get with my work PC laptops have generally lasted months, not years. Dell mice are utter crap.

    • The maker definitely matters.

      I've been using the same mouse for the past 5 years, when I replaced the Logitech 3-button mouse that I purchased in 1994. So, that's 2 mice in 20 years. And that old mouse was doing just fine, but I needed something that was USB, and the switch to an optical mouse was a nice upgrade. However, I'm starting to think about going wireless on the mouse and keyboard. Not sure if that will work well with my KVM switch.

    • by Whorhay (1319089)

      I've never had any trouble with the Dell mice that I've used at work but then again I never had to use any one of them for more than a few years before getting replacement during a tech refresh. That said I don't care for the ergonomics of them at all.

      My favorite mouse of all time was some old model of microsoft intelli mice they made back in 2002 or so. I used the same mouse for six years straight with no problems at all. It had a very nice feel in the hand and was light weight. I had to leave it when I en

  • Ahem. Trackball. No need to look down to see where the mouse has gotten to on my desk. Big fat ball that's always where I expected. Like all the balls in my life.
  • by Bo'Bob'O (95398) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @05:18PM (#45663995)

    It would almost be easier for me to list the ones that have broken then put a lifespan to them.

    Ever since I have moved to optical USB mice, of the dozens that I have used at home or work, only 3 no longer work. Ironically 2 of those were "high end" mice. The budget Microsoft and Logitech mice seem to last forever. I only just replaced the original Microsoft optical wheel mouse my grandmother had after ~10 years of use after a button broke. My other ones of that era are still going fine.

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      The only mouse I have ever worn out is an Amiga mouse. This was in 1999-ish, on an Amiga dating back to about 1990. The left button microswitch wore out, it still pointed fine.

    • by Nimey (114278)

      Strewth. The only mouse I can remember having that died was an early Logitech USB optical mouse from around '01. It'd been my mouse until ~'08 and then my wife's until just a few months ago, when one of the button actuators finally got clogged up with something and quit. I might have been able to fix it (and maybe even put it back together again), but mice are so cheap that it wasn't worth it.

  • My crappy mice that I use at work tend to last about two years, but I am sure I will have my Logic Tech Performance MX with Dark Field technology for a while (At least I better at the price I paid)
  • by Reliable Windmill (2932227) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @08:10PM (#45665943)
    I still have an old ball-mouse that's coming up on 22 years and still working. It was built to last. The Logitech optical mice I use these days usually fail after a year or two; they are obviously and intentionally made as consumption items so the manufacturer can get a steady income.
    • by MtViewGuy (197597)

      My old Logitech MX500 mouse pointer was ONLY retired because the scroll wheel no longer worked after five years of yeoman service. I've replaced it with a Logitech M500 model.

    • I still have an old ball-mouse that's coming up on 22 years and still working.

      Rapamycin?

      • I still have an old ball-mouse that's coming up on 22 years and still working.

        Rapamycin?

        My oldest ball mice still work fine as well, several Apple IIGS mice, a few Commodore 1350 mice, a 1351 or two, and a Tandy mouse (which has a bigass steel ball that a much younger me would have been tempted to use as a steelie in the marbles arena back in grade school).

    • Every single old Microsoft Intellimouse Web (the optical with the back and forward buttons on the sides) that I have collected and kept in use for the past decade continues to work to this day. The signs of finger wear are obvious but the little bastards are basically tanks in mouse form. I don't know about the newer ones but these may simply never die.
  • I got a new job and they had these crappy old Dell mice. My first request was a gel wrist rest for my keyboard, a gel wrist rest mousepad, and a Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer mouse [amazon.com]. It's the best mouse I've ever used, I'm not sure why Microsoft ever went away from the design. Clearly by the price, they are still highly sought after.
    • Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer mouse. It's the best mouse I've ever used, I'm not sure why Microsoft ever went away from the design. Clearly by the price, they are still highly sought after.

      That is another one I never pass up at Goodwill or St. Vinnie's, the 3.0 and the 4.0 especially. Those are also consistent resellers for me.

  • Microsoft? (Score:5, Funny)

    by xlsior (524145) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @10:23PM (#45667041) Homepage
    Microsoft Wheelmouse Optical -- the only virtually flawless product Microsoft ever made, so of course they discontinued them.
    • Microsoft Wheelmouse Optical -- the only virtually flawless product Microsoft ever made, so of course they discontinued them.

      Flawless for the user mean fatally flawed for the manufacturer. The manufacturer wants something like a mouse to work well enough but last just long enough that you're willing to replace it when it breaks. If it lasts longer than that, they missed a chance to extract more $$$$ from you. See "planned obsolescence."

      Cheers,
      Dave

  • My mice would last much longer if I could resist the urge to smack them against the monitor whenever my computer slows down. I know perfectly well that the mouse is blameless, but my lizard brain needs to SMASH something.

  • Where is that option?

    It's the perfect mouse. Will never be exceeded and they seem to never break either.

  • by sandytaru (1158959) on Thursday December 12, 2013 @01:04AM (#45667861) Journal
    So far, so good. Some of the silver paint has scraped off where I rest my thumb, but otherwise it's held up like a champ. The one I use at work is five months old, but has survived multiple airplane trips now, providing a testament to their durability. (Plus my wrist doesn't hurt and people hate using my computer. Double win!)
  • My very first Rising Star mouse from the mid 80s was still working when I tossed it a couple years ago. I used the bus mouse I got with my 286 until I built a machine with no ISA slots (and therefore no way to plug in the mouse's interface card). On the flip side, when Apple switched from the angular ADB mice to the rounded one in the early 90s, the rounded pieces of crap would start double-clicking after a month or two. I had to scrounge a box of the old mice to replace the new ones in our department.

  • I have had this mouse for ages, closer to 10 years than 5. I went looking for a replacement on the off chance that this one died and found that they now go for 300$ new in the box!

  • I'm not sure when it was released, I think in the late 90s, but I've been using the same Logitech iFeel USB mouse since I picked one up for $20 on clearance and it works great. Too bad only a handful of games use the rumble feature though. Weird that it caught on with gamepads but not mice, since many like to use mice for games.
  • My mouses (sic) tend to last a couple of years. Main reasons are that I buy them on the cheap rather than the proper choice of Logitech/MS product. I'd go for more expensive stuff but then I see the wife clicking with increasing violence and with her indicator finger reaching considerable height before slamming on the buttons when things don't quite work as she expects. Can't wait to get a laptop with a touchscreen to see her punch that Start screen.

    My first mouse cost me EUR35, had a huge rubber ball and w

  • by niktemadur (793971) on Thursday December 12, 2013 @09:39AM (#45669721)

    I've had an Evoluent Vertical Mouse for 6 years now and my wrist has already forgotten why to thank me for it, and see no reason to replace it anytime in the foreseeable future.

  • by Saethan (2725367)
    I've only had one mouse actually fail on me and that was because the cord became mostly detached. Currently using two different logitech wireless mice on my desktop/laptop. I have to replace the AA battery in each every few months or so.
  • Until a fancier mouse hits the market.

    All my Logitech mouses are still operational when I replace them with a better model and I don't change very often (every 4 years?).

  • As I suffer from multiple sclerosis, my right hand isn't what it used to be - operating a mouse became incredibly hard, so I switched to a thumb-operated trackball (M570). After a not too long learning period and honing my precision, I am now 100% trackballed.

    That said, however, this is actually my third trackball in three years. The first one was a victim of my stupidity: it stopped working on me, I opened it up, found that the battery connectors are so shoddily put together that if you put in a battery en

  • Out of all the mice I've owned, only a few have actually died. One was a small travel mouse that came with my previous laptop - it lasted about two years, and was actually pretty nice because it had a cord perfectly sized for a laptop (about 40cm long). Eventually the left-click stopped working. I've also had a few ball mice die, but since I ended up with an entire shoebox full of ones that still worked, I never really cared (I eventually just threw them away, because a working ball mouse is still worse tha

  • I tend to use mine for just a few years before the style either bores me or my usage pattern changes enough to warrant an upgrade.

  • Way back when (early 90s) I bought inexpensive mice and they'd die after a few months. Since then I bought better quality (e.g. more expensive ones) and they last for a very long time. I have a MSFT USB Intellimouse (optical) from 1998 or so that I used at work until a few months ago when I cut over to a laptop for my daily use. The plastic has gone a bit yellow and I've cleaned it a number of times with rubbing alcohol to get the gunk off.

  • The original mouse included within the 1968 "(Mother of all demos) Demonstration [stanford.edu]" presented by the inventor, Doug Engelbart.

  • Computer... Computer? {is handed the mouse and speaks into it} Hello, Computer? (Scotty)

    Just use the keyboard. (Dr. Nicolas)

    Keyboard? How quaint. (Scotty)

  • I used a Kensington Expert Pro Mouse trackball at home, a Logitech MX620 wireless mouse for my laptop, and a Logitech S510 wireless mouse at work. I prefer the trackball as it's more precise and takes up less room on my desk.

    Way back when I used the keyboard for playing Quake CTF. A bunch of my clan buddies switch to mice and started wiping the floor with my ass. I switch to a mouse but found that it would reach the edge of my desk or roll off the mouse pad (this was before laser mice) at inopportune ti

  • My favorite mouse is an old Logitech MX LASER. It has built-in rechargeable batteries with a charging stand that also serves as the receiver. This also allows me to put the receiver closer to the mouse Most importantly, it has a PS/2 connector which is pretty hard to come by these days.

    Now I just need to get a shark for it.

UNIX was not designed to stop you from doing stupid things, because that would also stop you from doing clever things. -- Doug Gwyn

 



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