16 Replies Latest reply on Oct 5, 2017 8:01 AM by dennisandersson1990

    Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling

    Randall Munroe Level 1

      I'm an experienced Photoshop user completely new to InDesign. I use a Wacom Bamboo tablet (the lowest-end one) as a mouse, and can't get the 'grabber hand' scrolling to work with it. The lower pen button is supposed to activate the grabber hand tool (just as if you held down the spacebar, which is what I think the pen button effectively does). The pen button works in Photoshop, but not InDesign. (In InDesign, the pen button makes it scroll, but it's a jumpy one-axis scroll that doesn't invoke the grabber hand tool).


      It's hard for me to get around without the grabber hand, since I'm so used to it. Does anyone else use a Wacom, and does the grab-and-scroll button work for you? I'm open to getting a better tablet if it's just a quirk of this model.


      I'm using OS X 10.7.2 and InDesign CS5.5.


      Thank you!

        • 1. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
          tonyharmer Adobe Community Professional

          Hi Randall


          This really has a lot more to do with Wacom than it does InDesign, as tablets can usually (but not always) be configured differently with different applications.

          I use a Wacom Bamboo tablet (the lowest-end one)

          Doesn't help too much, unfortunately - 'the lowest end one' doesn't provide anyone with enough information to give you a reliable diagnosis of your problem, sorry!


          However, the following things may be of use to you, I hope.


          InDesign does not always use the spacebar as a shortcut for scrolling - when you are in an active text frame, for example (and for reasons I am sure are obvious) the ALT key has that functionality.


          InDesign CS5+ supports 'spring-loaded' tools: you can hold down a button on your keyboard and use that tool while the key is held down; once you release the key, you are returned to the tool you were using previously. H is the [accelerator] key for the Hand Tool, which is also the same tool you're engaging when you hold down the spacebar (although with less functionality). Again, this won't work if you're in an active text frame.


          In your system prefs, check the Wacom tablet options out, you may be able to configure your pen buttons to work differently with InDesign.



          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
            Randall Munroe Level 1

            Tony, thanks for the advice!


            I thought there was only one Bamboo—the "lowest-end one" was just to clarify what the Bamboo is. (There's also the Bamboo Fun, but mine's just the Bamboo). Mine says MTE-450A on the back, but I doubt that means much of anything.


            Photoshop is the same way about the spacebar—neither it nor the pen work in an active text field. It doesn't work in InDesign anywhere, though. I didn't know about spring-loaded tools, though. That's really handy.


            I took your advice and went through the Wacom options again. I didn't find anything to fix it properly, but I did figure out that I can set the pen button to actually send the "H" keystroke when pressed. This gets it working with InDesign, though it means I can't use it to scroll outside of Adobe products.


            If it does sound like an issue with this tablet model, I may try getting another (and returning it if I have the same issues). It'd be nice to try out a better tablet, anyway


            Thank you!

            • 3. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
              tonyharmer Adobe Community Professional

              Hi Randall


              You're wlecome.


              There are a few Bamboo models (Touch, Pen and Touch, original) with varying controls on the side. If you can stretch to an Intuous 4 they are extremely configurable, and can be configured differently for individual apps.



              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                Randall Munroe Level 1

                I picked up the Intuos 4—it was time for an upgrade anyway. It's really nice. I was wavering between it and the Bamboo Create (I thought it might be nice to be able to do multitouch mouse stuff and pen art work on the same tablet, but I wasn't sure how well it would mimic the actual OS X magic trackpad).


                It didn't actually solve the InDesign issue, though. The pan/scroll button still activates the grabber hand in Photoshop but not in InDesign. (In InDesign, it still does the same jerky scroll it does when scrolling with the touchpad).


                The Wacom preferences suggest that it should work with "applications that pan with a grabber hand", so I'm not sure why it has this issue.


                I can work around the problem by setting the pen button to send a spacebar keypress instead of pan/scroll, but this breaks scrolling in non-Adobe applications.


                Do other people use a Wacom tablet with InDesign under OS X who can report whether the pen's grabber hand scrolling function works for them? If no one pops up, I'll figure it's just that InDesign and Wacom don't really cooperate and mark this partially answered.

                • 5. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                  Randall Munroe Level 1

                  Oh—I just realized you said


                  If you can stretch to an Intuous 4 they are extremely configurable, and can be configured differently for individual apps.


                  I checked, figured out how to do that, and set it to send a spacebar to InDesign and stick to normal pan/scroll everywhere else.


                  Thank you!

                  • 6. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                    Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                    Some of the problem may not be in the tablet. By default InDesign turned on Live Screen Drawing in CS5 when the feature was introduced, and I think it remains the defualt in CS5.5. Unfortunately on many systems ther just ins't enough graphic horsepower to make it work, and the result is very jerky movement on screen when trying to do things like move an object. If you experience that, the usual fix is to rest the preference for Live Screen Drawing to Delayed or Never.

                    • 7. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                      Randall Munroe Level 1



                      Good thing to bring up, though in my case, I don't think it's the problem—my issue is with the hand tool not being invoked by the pen button in InDesign like it is in Photoshop (and other apps that use a hand tool to scroll). When I switch to the hand tool manually, it scrolls quickly and smoothly. (This system is fast enough that live drawing doesn't seem to cause appreciable UI slowdown.)


                      (For anyone trying to make sense of this conversation later on, the "jumpy" scrolling is just my way of describing InDesign's scrolling when sent a scroll command from the OS (say, from a scroll wheel or trackpad) instead of a set-hand-tool followed by a click-and-drag. The "jumpy" scrolling is what happens when you drag two fingers on the touchpad in OS X, which causes InDesign seems to scroll in little jumps on one axis at a time instead of smoothly tracking the cursor. Hence, "jumpy".)


                      Anyway, an override in the Wacom settings to get the hand tool to send a spacebar instead seems to work—the only problem is that it makes me type a space now and then when I try to scroll while in a text entry box.

                      • 8. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                        alanomaly Level 1

                        I have the same problem (on Mac, Lion - I don't think I had the same problem when I use CS on Windows), with wacom cintiq (same software drivers as Intuos I believe). It's not just jerky, it's chaotic, e.g. a moments' 1cm diagonal down-left movement causes up to 10-15 seconds of jerky stepped down-left-down-left-down-left movement.


                        It's nothing to do with Live Screening Drawing. The behaviour is the same regardless of that setting.


                        It looks like, under the hood, InDesign is hackily re-hashing its default behaviour from input using a stepped mouse wheel (I'm not sure what the correct term is, but you know the type - mouse wheels where the wheel isn't smooth and moves in one axis at a time in stepped jumps of about 20 degrees). It seems to be translating each X pixels (from testing, X could easily be as low as 1) of motion into one queued turn of an imaginary mouse wheel. So, anything more than a few pixels of movement in anything other than a perfect horizontal or vertical line results in a long queue of jerky jumps lasting multiple seconds, usually going much further than desired.


                        Curiously, by default, Illustrator and Photoshop (and also Acrobat, I just discovered) automatically translate Wacom driver "Pan / Scroll" input into "Space bar". Not the system event by default triggered by the space bar keyboard shortcut, but the actual space bar keydown event. You can see this by at least two unexpected, unintended, undesirable behaviours:


                        1. Make a text frame in Illustrator or Photoshop. Put the cursor in it, type some characters, select them, then try to pan / scroll using the pen. The screen doesn't move, and spaces appear each time you press the pen button - erasing the selected characters.
                        2. Try to pan / scroll in dialog boxes, such as while navigating the Mac OS "Save as" window called from Illustrator, Photoshop, etc. You get the same effect as pressing space bar - a white preview box appears, and doesn't disappear until you press the pen button again. In contrast, in InDesign, you get the normal operating system behaviour like in non-Adobe applications - smooth scrolling within the dialog box.


                        So this proves two things:

                        • The inconsistency is definitely between the Adobe applications, not the fault of the Wacom driver as people seem to be trying to imply. It was probably a deliberate decision: in Illustrator and Photoshop, text frames tend to be smaller than in InDesign and people don't so often pan / scroll while editting text, so the risk of random spaces appearing in copy creating typos before something goes to print or publishing is lower (but, still present).
                        • The interpretations of the input in both InDesign and the other CS applications is hacky and buggy: in InDesign, because it's so clunky, and in Illustrator, Photoshop etc, because it runs the risk of unexpectedly puttint errors in copy text and because it disrupts the default behaviour of things like OS dialog boxes.


                        Ideally, all Creative Suite applications would have the same behaviour on hearing that a Wacom 'Pan / Scroll on' event had happened, which would be to trigger the system event that is the result of using the space bar to trigger 'Grabber hand' mode, without actually triggering a space bar keypress at the OS level.


                        Surely it would be trivial to trigger a system event within the application from a known, common type of input, without actually requiring that system event's default keyboard shortcut's keydown event to happen in the operating system at large?


                        Just bypass the actual keyboard shortcut itself, and the same consistent behaviour would work in all application - which is also consistent with the OS interpretation of the same event and its interpretation in applications like web browsers.

                        1 person found this helpful
                        • 9. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                          Ambious Level 1

                          alanomaly's analysis is most accurate I think. I have yet to found a solution - I'm trying different combinations in the Wacom application to send the app different commands, but nothing works well so far. Pan and Scroll KINDA works, but also for some reason gets stuck until I use an actual mouse or keyboard (probably because of the 'space' thing you mentioned).

                          I use Windows 8.1, btw, and an Intous CTL-480 so I doubt it's an OS or driver issue - it's strictly an in-app problem.


                          Edit: Found a setting in Windows that solved it for me, maybe Mac has a similar option you should check. In windows the solution was:

                          In Control Panel -> "Pen and Touch" -> "Flicks" and enable "Flicks".

                          With flicks enabled, everything works smoothly in Adobe Reader.

                          With it disabled, it stops working all of a sudden and the hand tool shows but doesn't respond to touches.

                          I have no idea how the two are related - but it works for me.

                          • 10. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                            carlos.a.gonzalez Level 1

                            @Ambious Thank you so much for your fix. Turning on Flicks worked!


                            This only started happening to me and I didn't know what part of my setup to try and troubleshoot. I knew it had something to do with the tablet because using a mouse did not show the same click and pan delays. I only noticed this started to happen to me with the InDesign CC 2014. But I'm running Windows 10 preview so I wasn't sure if that had anything to do with it. After updating Wacom tablet driver and noam running InDesignt was make it impossible for me to work on InDesign with my tablet.


                            Thank you again

                            • 11. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                              mtraps Level 1

                              Hello, I am using a mac, with the same problem. I would like to resolve the issue, but I don't see the Flicks option. How would I access this section so I can enable this? Thanks so much.

                              • 12. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                                MarinP Level 1

                                I have had the same issue in Lightroom CC, using a Wacom Intuos Art (although worked perfectly in PS). I couldn't use hand tool to move image when zoomed in.


                                I accidentally fix it (trial and error) by setting "Pressure Hold" instead "Pan/Scroll" (the lower pen button).


                                I don't know if it matters but I disabled "Tablet PC Input Service" service in Windows 7. So no Flicks activated.

                                • 13. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                                  mtraps Level 1

                                  Pressure hold didn't act like a scroll or pan and scroll/pan is the only function that works for that button. Any idea how I would disable flicks on a mac?

                                  • 14. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                                    julianaeye Level 1

                                    I believe I've found a solution:


                                    In your Wacom Tablet settings choose 'InDesign' as the application specific settings, then navigate to the "Pen" tab

                                    Once in the "Pen" tab, on whatever button you choose (I chose the bottom button), select the "Keystroke" option from the drop-down menu

                                    Then in the keystroke settings, enter the letter 'h', which is basically a shortcut for the 'hand tool' in InDesign

                                    Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 3.23.24 PM.png


                                    Now whenever you're working in InDesign, and you click the button you selected, it will automatically select the "hand" tool, and you can move around freely!


                                    You're basically just telling your pen to act as your finger pressing the 'h'/'hand tool' short cut key on your keyboard


                                    Hope this helps out, I was trying to find this solution for a long time as well!

                                    • 15. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                                      toto PC Level 1

                                      Im using intuos5.
                                      Try disabling windows ink in wacom settings while in InDesign to do stuffs,
                                      just enable it back when painting in photoshop to activate pen pressure




                                      • 16. Re: Wacom tablet grabber hand scrolling
                                        dennisandersson1990 Level 1

                                        I have found a good way to do it. it takes a few minutes to set up, but it works.


                                        I'm using a Wacom Intuos pro medium for InDesign CC 2015, MAC 10.12 sierra



                                        If you set your pen button settings for "all applications" at "keystroke" as "SPACE"key, you will be able to move around InDesign, without having to choose another tool to go away from the Hand tool.


                                        BUT you have to set the other applications, (finder, safari, illustrator....) to be "pan/zoom" (if that is what you're using the button for).


                                        Have no idea why it won't work to just set InDesign's settings for "SPACE" to pan....


                                        Hope it works for you guys!