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back to article Microsoft's so keen on touch some mice FAIL under Windows 8.1

Apple's not the only outfit experiencing upgrade blues: some who made the move to Windows 8.1 are reporting their mice aren't happy in the new version of the metro maze. Threads like this one spell out the problem, namely that mice, and sometimes keyboards too, are prone to freezing once users upgrade. Microsoft's noticed those …

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Silver badge

Killed my USB mouse, my USB keyboard, and my wireless network USB dongle. Gave me completely erratic behavior from all three. My keyboard was going insane - I'd hit a key, and sometimes it would do nothing, sometimes it would go into instant auto-repeat mode. Of course, the deal-breaker was that the wireless device would stop working once every 5-10 minutes, and take about 2 minutes to re-connect. That was the end of the line.

I think the problem is with the Intel drivers for 8.1 for the chipset I'm using. I rolled back to Win 8, and I'll wait for awhile to upgrade again.

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And

Mavericks killed my Apple alu keyboard... :-S The Microsoft Natural with PS/2 -> USB adapter is working fine though.

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Anonymous Coward

Roll back to Win 7. You know it makes sense.

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aqk
Happy

Win-7? LOL!

Why are all these MS (andWin-8) bashers always anonymous cowards?

MS must be doing something right...

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Anonymous Coward

This is exactly the sort of thing I warned about, and which prevents me from "investing" in Windows 8. The keyboard and mouse are second-class input devices in Microsoft's new touch-enabled world. Want to actually do productivity work on your PC? Too bad, gramps. Computers for dinosaurs aren't part of Microsoft's new plan for the future. That belongs to endpoints with fuck-all for usability!

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I agree

Ive been tasked with building a pair of PCs for my nephews for Xmas. They are suppose to be gaming rigs, but both are insisting on having Win8 instead of Win7, or any other OS. If SteamOS was available, thats what I would be going for instead.

I think I'm just going to sign the Xmas cards off with;

"You demanded Win8, dont ring me up whinging when the mouse doesnt work properly."

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Couldn't disagree more

@AC 03:33 - "The keyboard and mouse are second-class input devices in Microsoft's new touch-enabled world."

Mouse and keyboard work fabulously under Win 8. You clearly haven't even tried it. Win 8.1 is having some kind of USB drivers issue - but I certainly didn't see anything in Win 8.1 that would indicate that MS was trying to leave the mouse and keyboard behind. In fact, by default Win 8.1 is more mouse friendly in terms of returning a dedicated start button to the desktop. And the dedicated hotkeys for the Win 8 and Win 8.1 desktop are quite advanced. They just need to work out their USB kinks.

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Re: Couldn't disagree more

Bollocks

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Trollface

Re: Couldn't disagree more

They just need to work out their USB kinks

That might well be. Unfortunately, nowadays it seems to be forbidden at Redmond to use a regular keyboard and mouse, so it will be a bit difficult to test the fix...

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Trollface

Re: Couldn't disagree more

Indeed, the mouse and keyboard do what they're supposed to do. Shame about the UI and in Win 8.1's case the driver stack.

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Anonymous Coward

"This is exactly the sort of thing I warned about, and which prevents me from "investing" in Windows 8."

You never warned me, but I'm glad you didn't, as mine works perfectly fine.

Once you get used to it, I find it much better than old stle windows, but I do think you need a widescreen monitor to get most out of metro....

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Re: Couldn't disagree more

@Trevor - "Bollocks"

On the one system I tried Win 8.1 on, I was able to trace it down to USB problems. If I only used a mouse and a keyboard, and each were using their own dedicated port, I was getting relatively normal performance. Once I added a 3rd device, or a wireless device (even a wireless headset), or put a USB hub on one port, I was getting consistently erratic performance. I upgraded to Intel's USB chipset drivers for 8.1, but did not get improved performance. I lay the blame either at Intel's drivers, or at something to do with the Win 8.1 interaction with the USB system.

As soon as I rolled back to Win 8, everything worked perfectly again. We are running Win 8 on 4 systems in my office, and I've never had the slightest hint of a USB problem under Win 8. In fact, every one of those 4 machines is the most stable in the office. That might come down to the fact that they are all using more modern processors, including two new beauties with Intel Haswell chips.

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Re: I agree@Mr Damage

"Ive been tasked with building a pair of PCs for my nephews for Xmas. They are suppose to be gaming rigs, but both are insisting on having Win8 "

No probs. Install vanilla WIndows 8 (not 8.1) and load up Classic Shell. The Black Hand Gang can still have it boot to TIFKAM if they really want, but there's a proper desktop, full program menus and start button for those (frequent) times when TIFKAM is just a world of fail.

I'm not sure what MS were trying to achieve with 8.1. All that I can see they've achieved is to not deliver what users wanted (again), added yet another code base to support, and irritated a modest proportion of the hopeless optimists daft enough to think there were anything worth reinstalling yet another version of Windows.

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Re: Couldn't disagree more

Not seen any problems with mouse, trackpad or keyboard on any of the devices I've upgraded. Even my notebook, which has internal keyboard, external keyboard, internal trackpad, external multi-touch trackpad and mouse (all external are Logitech Unifying devices) has not shown any problems - but I don't play games on them, but for "professional" use I haven't seen any negative changes; in fact the additions under Windows 8/8.1 over 7 are nice.

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Re: Couldn't disagree more

@big-D - "in fact the additions under Windows 8/8.1 over 7 are nice."

Agreed. I especially find Win 8 to be more stable and responsive than Win 7.

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Re: I agree@Mr Damage

I've been toying with that idea, but that raises its own problems due to the distance they are away (2 hour drive), as well as the fact tat my brother and his missus leave all the IT stuff to either myself when I'm i nthe area, or trust their kids to "fix" the problem, which often leads to them coming over to my place with the now completely dead laptop.

Either I lock it down hard stop stop them from updating themselves, and possibly installing other games/apps that "need" admin rights

or

I leave it open for them, and deal with the unholy shitstorm that develops when they install whatever the hell they want, when they want, with no regards to what they are actually doing.

Might just tell em theyre getting Win7 for now, and maybe 8 once MS has worked out what they fuck theyre meant to be doing.

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aqk
WTF?

Re: I CANNOT agree

Blah blah blah... Perhaps you should NOT be building PCs.

I've built a couple, equipped them with both Win-8.1 AND linux, and the wireless mouse works perfectly in all instances.

EXCEPT! A Gigabytes wireless mouse acted erratically under my Win8.1, Win8.0 AND linux. I'll try testing it under my old (OLD! LOL) Win7 system, but I am sure it is the fault of the Gigabytes mouse.

Geez... what a bunch of losers / MS-bashers

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aqk
Thumb Up

Re: Couldn't disagree more

Agreed. It's amazing that you got (so far) 27 downvotes, whereas someone who replies "Bollocks" to you gets mostly upvotes.

Clearly Theregister is full of antediluvian Mac weenies.

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aqk

prevents me from "investing" in Windows 8."?

Trust me. You WILL sooner later. And then in a couple of years, you will complain about Windows 9, or whatever is around in 2016.

And of course then complain "What's wrong with Win8?" - Just as you did about the crappy new Win7: "Why cannot we all stay with good ol' XP? Or win2K?"

With guys like you, we'd still all be running the steam-powered PBE** And be asking our sisters to help us, as Lady Lovelace did: "Please?? Can you write me an App? Pleeeease?"

2016? Oh. Perhaps you'll still be running your old Wn7 or XP then. And your boss will be looking at you derisively.

(sigh) So many fools, so little adventure.

** Personal Babbage engine. Alas, no QWERTY input.

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@aqk

There was never anything wrong with Windows 7 (from a technological perspective) other than "snap" was on by default and the up button was missing. Snap can be disabled easily and Classic Shell fixes the up button.

The VDI licencing changes, however, were atrocious and are the only reason XP remains in my estate.

Windows 2000 was godlike. An excellent operating system that simply wasn't worth replacing until XP SP2 came around and fixed the unbelievably bad RTM release.

I said "why upgrade to Windows XP" when it was the shitty RTM release. I became a champion of Windows XP when it stopped sucking. Vista was a turd and I skipped it with the rest o fhte world. We jumped all over Windows 7 - carefully modified to suck less - almost immediately. Windows 8 is a turd and 8.1 is no better. Maybe Windows 9 will be workable. (Seriously doubt it. It'll probably be touch only, or "touch + kinect". Maybe "wave your testicles to select." If you don't have testicles, oh well, Microsoft is perfectly happy alienating half of any given market until it has cumulatively alienated everyone in all markets.)

So I call bullshit. I won't be buying Windows 8. Windows 7 lasts until 2020; I'll stick with that unless and until something better comes along. In terms of something better, let's examine:

1) OSX doesn't demand $100/endpoint/year for each endpoint I use to remotely connect to my Mac. That's a huge plus. It doesn't have a native RDP-speed remote connectivity server, that's bad. Teamviewer 9 is finally as fast as RDP, however, it eats a lot of CPU and is $600/year/user. That's still better than Microsoft's pricing - fuck you I'm not paying $30K if I use 300 different devices to connect to my home VM, which I did in 2012 - but $600/year/user for viable remote connectivity is still pretty steep.

2) Linux - in the form of Weyland - finally has an RDP server. The FreeRDP server code was ported into Weyland and it's fast. That's groovy, but the downside is that *dun dun dun*, it doesn't work yet. That said, what's on the table as a beta is damned close and it's only a couple of years out from full release. It costs me sweet fuck all to remotely access a Weyland system.

So, what to invest in? I could invest in Windows 8. Then 9. Then 10...paying Microsoft a tithe at each turn and then paying them more for the right to access that system remotely. (Thus meeting my business and workflow requirements.)

Alternately, I could take roughly one quarter of the same total amount of money I would spend on Microsoft licences and "upgrades", CALs and "remote usage rights" between today and 2020 and port every last one of the legacy Windows apps I have to Linux and/or standards-compliant HTML-5/CSS/JavaScript/etc.

I pick the latter option because once I've done it, I'm free. And I have a saleable product in the form of the apps I've just invested a few hundred thousand into porting.

This isn't about sour grapes. It's business. Microsoft is no good for the future of my company or that of my clients. As that is the case there is no logical reason to continue to use their software.

That's without even getting into "the interface sucks, Microsoft doesn't listen to customers, pushing us into an American cloud which I - as a Canadian - want nothing to do with."

I don't have to go there to determine that Microsoft is unsustainable. I just have to do the math. Is Windows licensing sustainable in the long term for my business? Absolutely not. Even supporting us on Windows 7 out to 2020 will come damned close to breaking us given the remote usage rights bullshit Microsoft makes us jump through.

The quicker the exit, the better for my business and the more money in my pocket as a business owner. That - right there - is what matters.

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I have noticed this

Sometimes the mouse cursor pauses for a moment, then catches up in slow motion before returning to normal. Also the keyboard sometimes randomly auto repeats a character. This makes playing games like Battlefield 4 even more interesting, when added to the random sound distortions, "rubber banding" and crashes already provided by DICE/FROSTBITE.

Fun times.

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Pint

"Mouse movement is not to scale even after acceleration is turned off"

Funny thing there; when I was making most of my money by doing high-quality pixel graphics some time ago, this is what I noticed the most about my customers' Windows machines I was supposed to do my work on. The mouse tracking (and the graphics tablet tracking, at the time, too) was not nearly as accurate as it was on those overpriced, underspecced machines by that unloved vendor.

By now, LXDE, Gnome, KDE etc. do a better job of mouse tracking than Windows ever did, right up to W8.1. No idea why that is. But maybe Microsoft should review their priorities, seeing as they are trying to market a graphical user interface...?

It's a bit early in the week, but I'll have a stiff one, thank you.

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Flame

And people wonder why...

...I'm awaiting Win 8.1.1...!

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Re:...I'm awaiting Win 8.1.1...!

Have an upvote! Showing our age aren't we!

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Re: And people wonder why...

Windows for *work*groups 8.11 surely?

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Re: And people wonder why...

Surly that Windows 802.11x For Workgroups

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Re: And people wonder why...

heh. I cut my teeth supporting 3.11 back in the early '90s ;-)

*whistling tunelessly off into the distance*

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aqk
Windows

I cut my teeth supporting 3.11 back in

Listen, sonny: I worked with Win-1 and Win2. Now those were REAL clunkers! And on big 5¼" floppies

We all basically looked at this shit, and said WTF? The little Mac is waaaay better than this!

Gates&company just smiled, and presumably said "give us some time. We're developing something for IBM- but we have the rights to it!"

And then Win3.0 came out on 6? 9? - 3½ floppies.

And then as you said, 3.1 came out with much fanfare. (don't forget 3.11 with 32bit!)

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I had the same ptoblem but assumed it was down to my laptops touch pad being a bit flakey. I am actually glad its a Win 8 problem, as it means I dont need a new laptop.

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Anonymous Coward

don't need new laptop ...

just a new O/S

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Re: don't need new laptop ...

just an old O/S

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aqk

Re: don't need new laptop ...just a new O/S

why?

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Anonymous Coward

Intel?

Same goes for Intels WIDI app, worked ok in Win8, now doesn't even see my TV in 8.1

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Silver badge

Well, looks like I'll be sticking with Win7/64 for a few more years then.

It doesn't lose its USB connections, nor does it choke with 3 or 4 (or 7) elements slotted in.

Talk about ridiculous issues. I thought USB was a mature protocol.

Maybe that's the issue. It is a mature protocol, therefor somebody let the summer intern take care of its implementation in the latest version.

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USB's not the only thing

Update killed the Realtech NIC on my HP laptop. Seems many have had the issue.

Claims there is not enough information from the chipset or BIOS to use the device. No driver updates yet.

Just glad it was a lappy and not a desktop as I have wi-fi as a failover.

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For the average user (disliking "Metro", not wanting Skydrive or any additional crap and using Classic Shell), is there any real reason to get 8.1?

If it wasn't for the hassle of reinstalling all my crap/tweaking the OS, I'd install Win7. In fact, that's what I'll be doing if a fresh OS install is required.

As an aside, I'd imagine the take up of 8.1 is pretty high seeing as MS forced a trip to their store on boot up.

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Just outta interest what are you running now? XP?

Its the OS I'm currently on again, as I needed it for a certain job.

I really need to dump this OS again now!

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Currently Win8 with as much full-screen crudware and assorted dreck removed as poss.

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All the more reason to stick to XP... Shame this is not really a tangible solution anymore. Or try to update those Systems up to Windows 7 Specs. This is what I'm in the current process of trying to do now. I managed to just get my Fathers PC updated to W7. On my system the jurry is still out But, I'll likely be moving full on to Mint Linux 13LTS then...

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Windows 8 and TIKFAM

Windows 8 is a perfectly good OS, it boots faster and runs smoother than 7 on similar hardware and it runs anything Windows 7 did (almost). Sure there are glitches in updates, just look it iOS7, that's not new and it won't stop happening anytime soon. If you're a serious business user just hold off 6 months on major changes and it'll be fine. There is only a little over 6 years left on Windows 7's support lifecycle... I sell to plenty of business who think 6 years is a minimum hardware lifespan, not maximum.

TIKFAM is weird and takes some practice. Sure it makes more sense on a touch screen but it works well enough to launch a program. There are limited numbers of good apps in the store... so ignore it. If TIKFAM bothers you so much just install StartIsBack and never see TIKFAM again, really it works just like 7, you would barely notice.

PS: My laptop is affected by the mouse issues, the touchpad has stopped responding twice since I installed 8.1, but it reboots in under 20 seconds... really it wasn't the end of the world.

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