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There are 2 possible answers to this common issue, the first is that the aspire has a mouse lock. check your keyboard on the function buttons for a picture of a mouse with a line though it, hit function and at the same time press the mouse with the line through it and if its locked off this will turn if back on. The second answer is driver issues, if the first suggestion dont work I would go to the Acer website click on downloads and drivers and enter your model number. Then download and install your think-pad and mouse pad drivers and install.
If you mean unlock keyboard... Press Ctrl, Alt, Del keys at the same time and then type in you sign on password if you have one. If not, just hit the okay/continue button icon on the screen with the mouse click.
If its a Compaq then there is a mouse pad power button at the very top of the pad. If not it may be disabled in the bios and needs be enabled for use. It is not uncommon for a user to disable the mouse pad on a laptop they r annoying.
Is there a function key on the laptop? (Fn usually blue ink) is there a key with the symbol that looks like mouse pad. Hold down Fn then the mouse pad key and that should enable the mouse pad.
As you have suggested the F7 key is the one for the mouse pad, and hasn't made any difference, have you somehow corrupted the drivers. You can download them from the acer website.
when did it last work, you cloud try a system restore. Remember to press Fn + F7 again and give it a moment to enable( just in case the last time you tried it, you turned the hardware off despite it's lack of functionality)
Try to turn off the acer laptop, remove the cables and battery . Press & Hold the power button. Then replug cables and battery. Turn on pc and if symptopm persist, consult acer tech support at 1-800-816-2237
if you take a hard look at your laptop you'll probably find a key that to disable keyboard that with fn will do it
what type of laptop and model
also check in control panel mouse then device settings see if you disabled in there
make sure the mouse and keyboard are in right connections...if you look closely youll see icons next to ports.
try without mouse at first start up ,load windows and use key with windows logo on it to access start and scroll to shutdown tab and restart...plug in the mouse before restart.
if logo tab isnt assigned press ctrl + esc to access start menu.