HP nc8430 Synaptics pointing stick & touch pad

I have an HP nc8430 with openSuSE 11.3 on it.
Is there any way to adjust the sensitivity of the pointing stick? The pointer movement is very very slow compared to windows, where the speed and sensitivity is adjustable. It seems to be loading a generic PS/2 mouse driver instead of Synaptics, though the touchpad is properly recognized.
The touchpad also intermittently stops working for several minutes at a time. How do I troubleshoot this?