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Activating Wacom Eraser in Gimp - select the eraser tool with the eraser end

Activating Wacom in Linux is a story in itself, but there are plenty of tutorials. I found a relevant one and it worked. The main issue was to ensure that XFree86 was aware of all the features. And to activate them in drawing programs like Gimp and Incscape (under Extended Input Devices).

Maybe I was just lucky but it seemed fairly mature. Still some hand-configuring but almost plug-and-play and it will probably be plug-and-play for real in a year or two. The Wacom did at least work as a mouse immediately. The hand work was required to enable the features.

Anyway. The Wacom Eraser was the silly little problem remaining. Everything worked. Drawing with the pen, drawing with the eraser, clicking, selecting in menus... Everything except that the eraser did not erase.

Solution? After some research, I learned this is a feature. Just select the eraser and use it. THEN it works. Silly. But clever when you finally get it.

I better repeat that in detail: Use the eraser end of the Wacom stylus. Select the eraser tool in Gimp (by clicking onit with the eraser end of the pen). Use the eraser as an eraser :-). Change to the pen tip and resume drawing (or whatever you did with it last time). And the next time you want to erase... just use the eraser end of the pen. Sigh ;-)

Gimp knows the difference between the tip and the eraser of the pen. But it's up to me to select whatever tool I want to use. Then it remembers which tool I used last on which end. (Actually does Wacom support several pens, which means I can change tools by changing pen. Or at least should be able to... I haven't tried that myself.)