Three Finger Drag on El Capitan


Mac three finger drag option is in Accessibility

I’ve finally upgraded to El Capitan in the past few days (from Mavericks, no Yosemite), and it’s really nice to be working with a new shiny interface at last (on the surface, but what can you do).

However the biggest issue I’ve had with the newly updated OS is the fact that it seemed I could no longer enable the three-finger drag gesture from System Preferences > Trackpad. It seemed I was stuck trying to click on an otherwise great trackpad and drag items across the screen that would often be dropped, or clicking and dragging futilely to try and highlight a significant section of text.

I only found the function possibly half a year ago when I was using it more on my Macbook Pro which has a slightly busted trackpad which makes it difficult to click well, and it’s become indispensible ever since I’ve got used to using it on my Macbook Air as well.

It turns out there’s a way to enable it though, it’s just not where you expect it to be. This option has now been moved to under Accessibility, presumedly because Apple have assumed that most people won’t need it given the new and improved Trackpad with it’s force touch technology. Awesome stuff, but we don’t all have the money for an upgrade.

Seems it’s pretty easy, really.

Mac three finger drag option is in Accessibility

  1. System Preferences > Accessibility
  2. Mouse & Trackpad from left menu
  3. Trackpac Options… from bottom
  4. Select Enable dragging and select three finger drag in drop down menu.

Quick look online shows lots of people are looking for it too - so not just me. Shame it was hidden away so deeply without any sort of ceremony.