So you’ve got one of those fancy mice with lots of extra (read “spare”) buttons and no configuration interface at all?
Yes, that’s admittedly something the Linux desktop has been lacking for a long time. The drivers are capable of almost everything, but it seems no one ever bothered to add a sophisticated configuration utility for macros or extra buttons – I mean beyond what e.g. Compiz offers. Gamers (if there are any at all) should even more want something like that.
On my Logitech mouse there’s a thumb button to which I’d really like to bind the overlay mode in Gnome Shell. If you know xbindkeys the solution’s quite obvious, just make it listen to that button in .xbindkeysrc:
"/usr/local/bin/show-gnome-shell-overlay" m:0x0 + b:10 + release
My first guess was to scan D-Bus for anything related to “org.gnome.Shell” because nowadays almost everything seems to use D-Bus for IPC. Nevertheless, I have to admit I was quite surprised seeing the overlay after calling that D-Bus method though. ;)
Here’s that script referenced above:
#/bin/sh dbus-send --session --type=method_call \ --dest=org.gnome.Shell /org/gnome/Shell \ org.freedesktop.DBus.Properties.Set \ string:org.gnome.Shell \ string:OverviewActive \ variant:boolean:true