From time to time, my Magic Trackpad gestures will stop working. I can restart to bring them back, but this is pretty disruptive.

Is there a process I can kill to bring them back?

(I've tried turning off the Magic Trackpad; unfortunately, it doesn't fix the problem.)

4 Answers 4


If resetting the necessary prefs does not help but the Magic Trackpad is still connected, this is a beautiful alternative: BetterTouchTool

In fact, this is much more fun since it makes the Magic Trackpad so powerful.


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In 10.8, running killall Dock seems to bring back trackpad gestures.

When a reboot didn't fix this, I went to System Preferences → Trackpad → More Gestures and changed

  • Mission Control to ‘Swipe up with three fingers’, and
  • App Exposé to ‘Swipe down with three fingers’.

Those gestures now worked with 3 fingers. Then I changed it back to ‘Swipe up/down with four fingers’ on both and they started working again using the four-finger gestures.

  • 1
    killall Dock has worked for me on 10.9.3 too
    – alu
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 21:05

This started happening to me on my early-2013 MacBook Pro since I upgraded to Mavericks. It happens both and with and without the Magic Trackpad.

Based on the note at the end of Andrew's answer, I ran killall Dock from a Terminal window and the gestures started working again.

This blog post has more information about the issue and there is an Alfred extension to fix it too.


For me, the problem was that dragging got turned off in Universal Access somehow. Go to Settings -> Universal Access -> Mouse & Trackpad -> Trackpad Options and turn on Dragging if it's not enabled.

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