I am a huge fan of the Windows Tablets. I have owned HP TC1100, ASUS EP121/B121, HP Slate 500, Dell Latitude ST, Samsung Series 7 Slate, and now Samsung /build/ (Series 7) Tablet and with each one it is missing something. ***Update (missing from photo) Dell Latitude 10 Tablet.
So I decided since I have such great pull with the hardware vendors, I would put together my must have specs. This way they can start building it.
MY DREAM WINDOWS TABLET
Wacom Pen/Digitizer with silo in Tablet
Detachable Keyboard with touchpad (with additional battery)
i5 Core CPU (x64) & 4GB Ram (More would be nice)
10.1 Screen (Not GMA, also wish it wasn’t 1366×768, I like 1024×768)
Full Size SD Card
HDMI (mini ok)
USB 3.0 on Tablet
USB 3.0 on Keyboard
At least 5 hours of battery life
Decent Front & Rear camera
Hardware button: Start/Windows Button and Keyboard Button
Optional Dock with Ethernet, full HDMI, More USB 3.0, maybe some nice speakers built in. (dream big!)
Is there a Windows Tablet that has all this? Close, but not yet.
What are your must haves with the new Windows 8 Tablets? Here’s your chance to speak up and let those vendors what you want.
One of my biggest complaints with the HP Slate 500 on Windows 8 is the lack of decent touch control with N-trig. N-trig has decided that they aren’t going to fix their drivers. That’s fine, this will be my last device that has N-trig digitizer. My dollars will be spent elsewhere.
So, what’s the problem you say. My problem with the N-trig drivers is the lack of support with the input control (Digitizer Settings, see screen shot below). This is what allows you to change how the touch and pen act (see picture). Pen Only, Touch Only, Auto Mode, Dual Mode.
This Input Control (Digitizer Settings) do not work in Windows 8 and N-trig is not going to fix. Shame.
So, what does this mean. Well, for me I get the palm rejection or false touches when I write and my hand (palm) touches the screen. The current setting is Dual mode, concurrent Touch and Pen input. Think of it like the touchpad on your laptop. You are typing and your palm touches the touchpad and causes the cursor to jump to a different spot on the page. On a laptop you have the touchpad control that allows you to turn off if it senses a mouse plugged in or when you are typing. Well, with N-trig, you don’t any longer on Windows 8. No workie & No fixie.
I was browsing the internet the other day and happened on a blog post where the blogger found a workaround. You will have to forgive me that I can’t find the blogger’s post or the blogger’s name. When I do, I will definitely give him/her credit.
What is this workaround going to do? This will temporarily disable the touch control on the Slate. This would be similar to selecting Pen Only above. This will allow only Pen touch only and the touch is temporarily disabled. This isn’t going to be for everybody, but for this is golden for me. Unfortunately, I haven’t found a way similarly to Auto mode.
Going to download a program that is a that when run connects to the Device Manager like view that allows you to enable and disable devices. However the steps below will create a shortcut or command line that will be used to disable the touch. You can also pin the shortcuts to the Task Bar for easy use.
1. Go out to www.Nirsoft.com and find a program named DevManView (direct link). At the writing of this post the current version is v1.27. Scroll down to the bottom and download the (x86) version (or x64 version for Samsung Series 7 or ASUS B121)
2. Create a directory on the root of your C Drive called TouchControl
3. Unzip the file you downloaded in Step 1 into the C:\TouchControl folder. There are 4 files that are extracted.
4. Create a shortcut in that directory using the following command.
a. Open Device Manger | Devices | N-trig DuoSense(R) Digitizers
b. Locate “N-trig DuoSense MultiTouch HID Device” and double click.
c. Click on the Events Tab. Copy the value that is highlighted in yellow. This value will be added when you create the shortcuts.
d. Open Windows Explorer, browse to the C:\TouchControl and right click in the folder and select New | Shortcut
e. Copy and paste the Disable command below into the path, but using your value that you got above.
C:\TouchControl\DevManView.exe /Disable “HID\VID_1B96&PID_0001&MI_01&Col02\7&24205bb2&0&0001”
f. Click through and give the name of the Shortcut “Disable Touch”
g. Now Create another shortcut but use the ENABLE command below and name it “Enable Touch”, also using your value that you got above.
C:\TouchControl\DevManView.exe /Enable “HID\VID_1B96&PID_0001&MI_01&Col02\7&24205bb2&0&0001″
5. Add the shortcuts to the Task Bar just right click on the shortcut and select Pin to Task Manager.
6. To give it a little flair right click on the Shortcut | Properties | Change Icon, browse through the list and select an Icon that you like for Disable and Enable shortcuts. I picked the Green for the Enable and Red for the Disable.
**Please note that the device that controls touch may not be the same on your tablet. I was able to get this to work using the information below on my HP Slate 500, Samsung Series 7 Slate, and ASUS B121 eSlate but using the 64bit version of DevManView. I have not found anything about the downloaded software that would cause any alarm. It is not installing any software it is extracting several files that launch as a separate program.
Found that the HID value is different on every computer. Updated blog post to reflect that.
Also, this does require the elevated permissions when doing so. I haven’t found a way around this. You are actually disabling a device so I don’t think there will be a workaround. I run my as a standard user and then another account that has Admin and just pop in the credentials when prompted. I have run this so long that I don’t give it a second thought.
Looks like ASUS released Windows 8 Drivers for the EP121 and B121 Eee Pad Slates. New BIOS update and other drivers. <10/30/2012>
http://www.asus.com/Eee/Eee_Pad/Eee_Slate_B121/#download (stopped working)
http://www.asus.com/Eee/Eee_Pad/Eee_Slate_EP121/#download (stopped working)
You will get the following pop up about some incompatibilities.
Samsung just released a new piece of software (sw update) that detects your computer model and finds Windows 8 Drivers. It also has some new Samsung utility software on it as well.
SW Update is a program that allows you to install the latest Samsung software and updates with ease. Normally, software is installed from CDs, DVDs, or by directly downloading the software from the Samsung Electronics website. With SW Update, however, you can automatically search for and download the BIOS, drivers, and software for your Samsung computer product over the internet, without having to look them up individually. What’s more, you can choose to install all available software and updates at once or install them selectively. Certain software and updates may be required to ensure complete functionality of your Samsung computer, so it is recommended that you use the automatic notification feature to easily find the essential software for your computer and the updates for enhanced features.
I’ll blog more about content. I’m pretty excited about this.
Click on the Samsung Download Center link on the page.
Once installed and the first time you launch it, you will be prompted to put in your serial number of your device (I don’t like that, but oh well). I have the Samsung //BUILD tablet and it was able to detect drivers for it. On the summary page it identified all sorts of drivers, some that were up to date and others that were newer. You can click on the specific driver and install it, download it, or install them all. On mine it detected about 13 updates.
It will also allow you to download all the drivers (they call it export) and Samsung software as well. All in all it was about 1.5GB of stuff.
There is a piece of software that acts like the old Windows Start button for those who still can’t live without it. It’s pretty cool.
Great job Samsung! I only wish this would have been out there sooner for us early W8 pioneers.
One of things that you need to get use to in Windows 8 is the Start button now longer there and some of the new Windows Keyboard shortcuts that aren’t available without a keyboard.
I found my self in that situation the other day at work when I needed to log out of my tablet and log in as my admin account. Ok, I swipe the charm to bring up the Start button and have the option of a shutdown or restart, but couldn’t figure out how do I just sign out or log out.
I had a Duh moment.
Go to the Start Menu and click on your user in the upper right corner and menu will pop up. Click the Sign out option. Bada Bing!
The next release candidate update of Windows 8 was recently announced at the Technology Conference in Tokyo in April. Microsoft’s Steven Sinofsky announced Release Preview would be available the first week of June.
Current Release Dates
Windows 8 Developers Preview (September 2011)
Windows 8 Consumer Preview (February 2012)
Windows 8 Release Preview (June 2012)
Windows 8 RTM (October 2012?) Maybe…
In my previous post we installed Windows 8 Consumer Preview on the Samsung Series 7 Slate. Now we are going to continue where we left off and install any missing drivers.
Now let’s look at is the Device Manager to see what drivers we are missing.
1. From the new Windows 8 Start Screen, click on the Desktop icon.
2. Right click on the desktop and select Personalize.
3. Click the link in the upper left named “Change desktop icons”
4. Put a check under Control Panel and click Apply and then OK.
5. Double click Control Panel
6. Click on the the Hardware and Sound link.
7. Under Devices and Printers click on Device Manager.
This is a list of the drivers that Windows is unable to find.
I am assuming that you configured wireless to your home network. Run Windows Updates and get the latest Windows 8 CP updates. As of 03/17/2012 these are the the specific Windows 8 CP Updates (8).
OTHER (MISSING) DEVICES:
1. Windows Update will resolve PCI Simple Communications Controller.
2. Download and Install the following Chipset driver from Samsung site here.
Click on “Manuals & Downloads” (Located 1/4 the way down the page)
Click on Driver link
Select Chipset (Driver) (ver.126.96.36.1999)
Download, unzip, and install.
NOTE: Please note that the “Unknown device” is the rotation driver which there currently is not a driver that works on the device.
On Monday (3/26) Samsung released W8 drivers for their Series 7 Slate for the Touch Screen Sensor and the Rotation Sensor drivers on their site. Check out their great Windows 8 Customer Preview page here.
Use USB Stick to install Windows 8.
What you need:
1. USB Stick, a minimum of 4GB for Windows 8 (x86 or x86).
2. Download and Install the Microsoft Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool here.
3. Download the latest version Microsoft Windows 8 beta (DP, CP, RP).
1. Plug USB Stick into the Computer. Note the drive letter associated with the USB Stick.
2. Launch the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download tool
3. In Step 1 browse and select the ISO file you download above.
4. In Step 2 click on the USB device button in the lower right.
5. In Step 3 select the USB stick you plugged in and click “Begin copying” button in the lower right.
6. You will get prompted to erase USB stick, after confirming that it is the correct USB device click “Erase USB Device”.
7. You will get another confirmation. Click Yes to erase.
8. In Step 4 it will format the USB stick, make it bootable, and extract the ISO files to the USB stick.
9. Finally after about 8 minutes you will get successful message. Click the upper X in the right corner to close.
Note: Depending on the type of Tablet/Slate you have you will want to enter the BIOS and change the boot order. I did not have to do this with my Asus EP121, it automatically booted from the USB Stick. However my HP Slate 500 and Samsung Series 7 Slate you had to enter the BIOS to change the boot sequence.
I have been running the Windows 8 Developers Preview on my HP Slate 500 since November (see my blog post on it here and here). I have been very happy with it during the last couple of months and it has been very stable to my surprise. Since then I have been anticipating the follow up or update of Windows 8.
Yesterday I was following the #Windows8 twitter feed and the live blog of the event seeing photos of the event held at the Mobile World Congress 2012 event in Barcelona. I am very curious why they choose that event and even more surprised that there was no live streaming of the event. A big fat failure for Microsoft on that one.
Well it is officially released. Time to get cracking…
1. Download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview 32-bit here (2.5GB)
*Note: Be sure to grab the Product Key from the download page. Key is required for installation.
2. Create a bootable USB Stick. Download Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool here. This allows you to create a bootable USB stick with the downloaded iso file. This makes the process so easy. Click, click, walk away and boom, you have a bootable Windows 8 USB drive. I used a 8 GB USB stick that you can get for $10 at Walmart. Note: A 4 GB will work for both 32-bit and 64-bit.
1. Plug USB into HP Slate 500. I have my Slate in the docking station so I have additional USB slots for my USB Mouse and Keyboard.
2. Power on the Slate.
3. Click “-“ to get into the Start Menu.
4. Click “-“ and select Boot Device and click the Home Button to select.
5. Click “-“ and select USB Stick and click the Home Button to select.
6. Go through the usual installation options. I selected fresh Install (not an upgrade) and left all the other partition intact (SYSTEM and HP_TOOLS), I just installed over the primary partition.
This is the lock screen.
This is the main screen.
In my next post I will go through getting drivers installed and configured.
I have been running Windows 8 DP on my HP Slate 500 for over a month now and just love it. I really love the graphics (not choppy), better touch response, and better inking. Still getting use to the whole Windows 8 live tiles.
Windows 8 Developers Preview was announced and made available at the Build conference about a month ago. To the right is a picture of the Microsoft Lab with other computers and tablets and slate that they tested Windows 8 on, read about it (here). If you look carefully you will see the HP Slate 500.
1. Download the Windows Developers Preview 32-bit here (2.8 GB).
2. Download and create a bootable USB with the iso here. This makes the process so easy. Click, click, walk away and boom, you have a bootable Windows 8 USB drive. I used a 4 GB USB stick that you can get for $10 at Walmart.
1. Plug USB into Slate. I have my HP Slate in the dock with a USB mouse and keyboard attached to the dock and the USB stick in the Slate.
Put the USB Stick in the USB Slot on the computer
Power on the Slate
Click “-“ to get into the Start Menu
Click “-“ and select Boot Device and click the Home Button to select
Click “-“ and select the USB Stick and click the Home Button to select
2. Go through the usual installation options. I selected fresh install (not an upgrade) and left all the other partitions in tact (System and HP_TOOLS), I just installed over the primary partition.
In my next post I will go through getting drivers installed and configured.