MagicDriver Bites the Dust.


The guys over at SteerMouse make one of the few software packages that I think is worth the money.  So I was surprised to find this announcement about my free Beta version of the Apple Magic Mouse Driver.  I’ve used this software since the Beta 1 version and its been flawless for years – you’d think they’d just release it and make a little return on their investment. 

And worse, it looks like they plan to enforce an uninstall of the latest free version.  That leaves yours truely without a three-fingered swipe to switch between spaces.

Ah well.  I’ve already tried BetterTouchTool  and  MagicPrefs looks like it might be a good replacement, too.  Both are available for the same price as the MagicDriver’s free beta 🙂


MagicDriver Top

We have been working on a version of MagicDriver scheduled for release in April 2011, but we have now decided to stop further development of MagicDriver, since we will not be able to give it enough functionalities and support appropriate to its license fee, which does not fully cover the cost of programming and support staff. We deeply apologize to all users who were waiting for the product version.

The current beta version will expire at the end of March 2011. You will need to uninstall MagicDriver after the trial period because we are no longer able to build a new beta version. Please see the instructions below for uninstalling.




Published in: on March 14, 2011 at 1:22 pm  Comments (35)  

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35 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I am sad. This was the only driver that works for me whit the magic mouse. Because there is sensitivity and tracking speed. The other applications have only tracking speed. And that is not good.

  2. MagicDriver rocks. Rocked… I will really miss it.

  3. Going to be missed. Kind of pisses me off that they just quit and don’t allow the person to still use it. At least offer up a small price to pay to keep it. All that great work and they now appear to be a**holes IMHO

  4. Agreed, I would pay for a version that has no future development in it. It was just perfect, can ‘t get used to BetterTouchTool (the best alternative) especially as the sensitivity of the pointer is not adjustable in there (just tracking speed). Basically my Magic Mouse became useless for me now. Too bad.

  5. I have been in contact with the developer, and he wont offer a free or paid current version. I can confirm, the driver continues to work if you change the system date, but you dont want to do that long term. I haven’t the software tools to dig into this, I’m sure with them I could fix this, you just need to find the code for checking the current date. Maybe he’s withdrawn it because OSX 10.7 contains similar facilities (?).

  6. Truly upsetting about MacDriver since I’m using Mac OS Tiger and MagicPrefs and BetterTouchTools does not run in Tiger. I would have paid $50 for the driver. The magic mouse is superior to the mighty mouse in that it has no track ball so doesn’t get stuck with dirt whenever the warranty expires.

  7. Man. No kidding! No other option seems to make the mouse respond as it should. Prefs and BTT offer customization, but I’m mainly after cursor behavior which magicdriver had down.

  8. I too am super disappointed. I didn’t understand why he couldn’t release it into the wild if he wasn’t going to continue it, and asked him about it.
    I figure, if you’re not going to sell it as-is, then give it away for free, right?!
    Oh well. I guess I have to upgrade my system? I don’t want to cause my version of protools only runs on 10.4. I guess I’ll sell the magic mouse on ebay.

  9. +1. Miss it. Would pay for it as is.

  10. Has anybody asked the developer of BTT if a second parameter can be introduced for cursor control in his app? I’ve already forgotten what it was called in MagicDriver but I guess it’s usually called “acceleration” Everything else in BTT seems just as functional to me.

    • Yes I did already and he told me that for integrating that level of custimization you need to develop a real driver instead of a piece of software like he did.

      And he told me that he has no experience in developing drivers for OSX. Too bad, again. Yeah, ecceleration is what I miss the most in BetterTouchTool.

      Will somebody with the right experience in developing drivers please stand up, devote some time to it and make a shitload of money? 🙂

  11. Wow how can this be so difficult? Why did Apple make such a lame driver for the Magic Mouse? I guess there must be lots of people who aren’t bothered by this, but it’s so hard to imagine. I mean the mouse is SOOO hard to use with the Apple driver. And what about Steer Mouse? Couldn’t they expand their product to cover the Magic Mouse? I am so frustrated by all of this and really hating my iMac without MagicDriver.

  12. I’m very disappointed, too. I wish I could disable the date checking. This was the only driver that actually worked. Every other program only allows you to change the tracking, and even at the possible highest value is way too slow.

    I just got myself a Razer DeathAdder, and using the same company’s SteerMouse program. I happily paid for it, it works perfectly, and I would’ve paid for the Magic Driver as well. I’m still vulnerable, since this is the only company in the world that allows me to set an acceptable acceleration and speed range. Everything else is 10x slower than it should be, and has a ridiculous jump in the tracking curve.

    I just don’t understand why Apple can’t make a reasonable driver. I honestly don’t understand how people use their computers. Anyway SteerMouse still rocks. Now I have a Magic Mouse that I can’t use.

  13. Man! I`m fucked! iMac 27″ without MagicDriver is a piece of shit! I don`t have more will! It`s tiring!

  14. Yeah I just dug out an old Logitech notebook mouse that’s silver and looks ok with the iMac. I got steermouse running and life is good. Didn’t realize steermouse was the developer of Magicdriver until I saw the interface. Now I’m even more mad/confused ??

  15. MagicDriver is an excellent piece of programming. By now I guess it’s the only way of using the magic mouse in full function with Tiger. Since I have two macs running OS 10.4 equipped with a magic mouse I automated the workaround mentioned above changing the system date back to March 2011:

    I made a login hook that switches the date back during the system startup and makes MagicDriver think it hasn’t reached the time to expire. After the Finder loaded the system time then syncs automatically with the time server (if enabled) or a simple shellscript does a manual connection (activated by making this second script a LoginItem in the Accounts PrefPane).

    I haven’t noticed any disadvantages yet caused by booting with the wrong system date. The only thing you have to care about is to switch the date back manually when opening the MagicDriver App when you want to make changes to your gestures etc.

    Hope this helps those of you a little who want to continue using MagicDriver.

    • Can you publish the script you used for the login hook. Reaaly missing MagicDriver.


      • Sure. To my excuse, I’m not a professional in programming so there might be smarter ways – let me know! Here it is.

        1. Create the following applescript which sets the date back to Jan.01.2011:

        do shell script “date 010101002011” password “your-password-here” user name “your-username-here” with administrator privileges

        Save it anywhere you want, e.g. /~/Library/Scripts/ and name it to “settopast.scpt”:

        2. Create a plain text document (with TextEdit):

        #!/usr/bin/env bash
        osascript /User/name-of-your-home-folder-here/Library/Scripts/settopast.scpt

        Save it anywhere, let’s say again /~/Library/Scripts/ and name it to e.g. “” – be aware to save it with the suffix .sh as it should work as your loginhook shellscript.

        The most critical thing here is to store your administrator password unencrypted. Even if you save your applescript as “executable only”, opening the file in a texteditor results in showing your password somewhere inside the text. Perhaps saving the applescript as an “executable only” script-application (not readable anymore!) might be working, but I haven’t tried it yet.

        3. The next step is defining the login hook. For this browse to:
        (/path/to/script refers to the shellscript “”)

        4. On my Macs I don’t syncronize the date automatically so I added an applescript application (executable-only!) to the LoginItems in the Accounts PrefPane. This connects you to the timeserver once:

        do shell script “ntpdate” password “your-password-here” with administrator privileges

        5. Please, run every script seperatly to see if the results are as expected. If so, restart your Mac – MagicDriver shoudn’t complain anymore unless you open it for configuration purpose.

        I tested it only on Tiger 10.4, but you might adapt it to Leopard/SnowLeopard too …

  16. Thanks, I’ll give this a try and report back.

  17. does the script work even if i don t have any password set for my user account???
    when i use the apple script editor i cannot save the script because i got a syntax error…:(
    (do i have to copy quotation marks???)

    • Without a password the script has to be:

      do shell script “date 010101002011” password “” user name “your-username-here” with administrator privileges

      And of course every quotation mark in both apple scripts is necessary – but to my shame in my comment above I used the wrong ones. Applescript accepts only the “simple” double quotes (ASCII 34). Replace them and you’ll see – it works!

  18. I tried to install MagicDriver SW but kept getting “This trial period has expired. You cannot install this version.” even though I had already set the system date back to Jan 2011. Any idea how to get around this issue?



  19. You could be using an older beta that expired before, you need beta 16. I’m still hoping to find an elegant solution to this that works with 10.6. Or should we just wait to see what 10.7 brings.

    Cant understand why to kill Magic Driver, yet keep Steermouse going. Have Apple dont something in 10.7 that breaks MagicDriver so the developer can’t be bothered to start again.

  20. i keep getting syntax error in the script could u rewrite it with the correct double quotesthank u very much!

    • Hi Alessandro,

      I give it another try but looking at my reply on May, 10 the quotes seem to also have changed there although I typed them correctly. Might be caused by the blog …

      For the first applecript it is:
      do shell script “date 010101002011” password “your-password-here” user name “your-username-here” with administrator privileges

      The last script to set the correct date (be sure you are connected to the internet already at startup – otherwise this simple applescript line may give you an error):
      do shell script “ntpdate” password “your-password-here” with administrator privileges

      I hope the quotes are alright now, but sorry, I can’t tell until I see this comment being posted.

      • Didn’t work – the quotes are confused again :-0
        Hint: on my german keyboard the double quote is located shift-2, perhaps this helps!

  21. So any news if Lion will help the Magic Mouse? I’ve seen some info on scrolling but don’t see anything on cursor behavior.

  22. I noticed today that BetterTouchTool has released a Lion-ish version. I’m liking this replacement-ware more and more. The one shortfall (if you can even call it that) is that it does not support the older (one-button) trackpads on the old Macbooks.

    See here:

  23. @Lenn

    I have some good news and not so good news. The good news is that I’ve found a way to entirely avoid entering an administrator password anyway. Instead of using AppleScript, on Tiger you can just write a shell script like this:

    /System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setusingnetworktime off
    /System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setdate 01:01:2011

    You can save this, say, with the name and place it, say, in /Users/Shared

    Although the script works launching it in Terminal:

    sh /Users/Shared/, it doesn’t seem to run automatically BEFORE the MagicDriver kicks in when logging in.

    However, there’s a not-so-beautiful workaround: Just create an application capable of doing the same after you see an ugly message inviting you to uninstall MagicDriver. Just dismiss the invitation and run the application. To create the application, just use AppleScript with the following code:

    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setusingnetworktime off”
    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setdate 01:01:2011”
    tell application “MagicDriver” to activate
    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setusingnetworktime on”

    Save it as an application (named, for instance, “LaunchMagicDriver”) and place it anywhere you like (for instance, for the time being, your desktop). After testing it to your satisfaction, you can choose to automatically load it as one of your Login Items. It has the advantage of changing the system time just for an instant, before launching the MagicDriver setup application and returning the time to normal immediately afterwards, while the application is running. It doesn’t seem to be adversely affected once it is launched.

  24. As a follow-up of the above, I’m sorry this web page doesn’t display the paths correctly, but if you try to copy the lines (for instance, with your mouse) and copy them to, say, TextEdit, you’ll see the paths correctly.

    As further clarification, the Tiger path to the “Panther” version of systemsetup (the Tiger version is only available in OS X 10.4 Server) is as follows:
    /System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ [continues…]

    The quotation marks in AppleScript should be straight, not curly. Other than that, the indications above are valid.

    • That seems to be a smart solution. Magic Driver shall work forever!

  25. Your site is pretty interesting to me and your topics are very relevant. I was browsing around and came across something you might find interesting. I was guilty of 3 of them with my sites. “99% of site managers are guilty of these 5 errors”. You will be suprised how simple they are to fix.

  26. Thanks for the wonderful workaround you have provided.
    I added a small bit of additional coding to allow the “LaunchMagicDriver” app to run from boot without having to manually dismiss the “ugly message inviting you to uninstall MagicDriver”. I have been running it for a few weeks and the extremely occasional hickup is for some reason the system time will not reset automatically to the correct date. You will know this is the case if a webpage won’t load and shows some certificate error message. Simply navigate to date and time and have it auto reset. I have found it works best to have “LaunchMagicDriver” listed after the Magic Driver app in the computer account login items.

    The coding follows, the lines beginning with ‘–‘ are comments and will be ignored by the app when it is run:

    –quit inital pop up screen on boot
    tell application “UserNotificationCenter” to quit

    — same script as first version
    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setusingnetworktime off”
    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setdate 01:01:2011”
    tell application “MagicDriver” to activate
    do shell script “/System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ -setusingnetworktime on”

    — quit the MagicDriver setup window
    tell application “MagicDriver” to quit

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