Windows 8 Release Preview on Lenovo X220 Tablet

I installed the Windows 8 release preview the day it released on my Lenovo X220 tablet via a boot from VHD option, with Windows 7 still as my primary OS. I’ve been using Windows 8 Release Preview since the release and here are a couple of thoughts.

Since this(boot from VHD) is as close to a clean install as possible I’ve had almost everything working quite well.

SPEED: I haven’t done any formal tests but everything appears to be very fast. It’s amazing since the previous releases were quite fast as well.

Pen and Touch: Pen and touch works beautifully.

Additionally, it also recognized my 5+ year old HP OfficeJet 6318 printer.

Drivers: I did have to install a couple of Lenovo drivers for the following: (Grab the Lenovo Windows 8 Beta drivers)

1. Buttons on the x220 – basically enabled me to use the buttons for auto-rotate.
2. Chipset Drivers
3. Intel AMT 7.1 drivers

My suggestion would be to install each of these drivers one step at a time, as during one of the earlier builds the Beta drivers had not worked correctly.


1. I’ve issues with Bluetooth not recognizing my Plantronics headset.

2. I still have one unknown device on the machine which Windows 8 is unable to detect, this is sad considering that the Lenovo X220 is one of the devices they are testing Windows 8 against.

3. I find the logging in with the fingerprint reader to be quite clunky on Windows 8. The experience on Windows 7 was far superior, from a completely shut machine you get the OS to startup with a swipe.

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Lenovo releases Windows 8 Beta drivers

Lenovo has released Windows 8 Beta drivers, which is a godsend for people like me who’re testing it out on the Lenovo X220 Tablet and various other lenovo machines. Grab them at

A Big Thank you to the Team at Lenovo Smile


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Windows 8 How To Series

Windows 8 How-To Posts

Windows 8 How To: 1. Switch Between Metro UI and Desktop Mode
Windows 8 How To: 2. Switch Between Apps or Snap Apps
Windows 8 How To: 3. How to Power Off Your Device
Windows 8 How To: 4. Show and Access the Control Panel
Windows 8 How To: 5. Show and Access Administrative Tools
Windows 8 How To: 6. Show All Apps
Windows 8 How To: 7. Switch Between Windows Accounts and Local Accounts
Windows 8 How To: 8. Set up a Picture Password
Windows 8 How To: 9. Set Up a Printer
Windows 8 How To: 10. Customize Metro UI – App Tiles and Groups
Windows 8 How To: 11. Install Language Packs for Multilingual Support
Windows 8 How To: 12. Show and Use “Run” Command
Windows 8 How To: 13. Show and Use cmd Prompt (DOS Mode)
Windows 8 How To: 14. Show and Use PowerShell
Windows 8 How To: 15. Show and Use Desktop Applications
Windows 8 How To: 16. Install .NET 3.5 and Windows Live Essentials
Windows 8 How To: 17. Add New Tab or New InPrivate Tab in Metro Style IE Browser
Windows 8 How To: 18. Configure WiFi Connection and Airplane Mode
Windows 8 How To: 19. Show Hidden Files, Folders and Drives
Windows 8 How To: 20. How to Start Windows 8 in Safe Mode
Windows 8 How To: 21. Install and Uninstall Metro Style Apps
Windows 8 How To: 22. Enable or Disable Sharing Between PCs Using HomeGroup
Windows 8 How To: 23. Find and Use Windows Help and Support
Windows 8 How To: 24. Show and Configure Free Anti-Virus App (Windows Defender)
Windows 8 How To: 25. Show and Enable Split Touch Keyboard (On-Screen)
Windows 8 How To: 26. Set up Remote Desktop Connection
Windows 8 How To: 27. Backup your Files Using File History
Windows 8 How To: 28. Restore Files Using File History
Windows 8 How To: 29. Restore System to a Previous State Using Restore Point
Windows 8 How To: 30. Restore your Device using Refresh and Reset



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Windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts



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Solving Touch Issues: Windows 8 Consumer Preview and Lenovo x220 tablet

It appears that a lot of people have upgraded their Lenovo x220 tablets from Windows 7 to the Windows 8 consumer Preview and have found their touch interactions or pen inputs are not working correctly. Here’s are possible solutions.

Firstly, I hope and pray that you’ve done this installation on a spare machine and not your everyday machine and the following is just a suggestion which seems logical to me, so take the advise with a pinch of salt and do this at your own risk, don’t blame me if things mess up further, wish you the best of luck.

Go to add/remove programs and uninstall the Wacom ISD tablet driver and then restart the windows 8 consumer preview. Logically Windows should then re-install the appropriate drivers.WACOM un-install Windows 8 Consumer Preview on Lenovo x220 tablet


You can try two other approaches,

1. Try an update for each touch device driver or

2. Remove touch device drivers


1. Try and update each touch device driver, by going to each of the devices in your device manager highlighted in the second image below(scroll down), both the red and yellow box, and update the drivers by right clicking and choosing update driver software.

Udate touch drivers on x220 tablet for Windows 8 Consumer Preview

2. Remove the earlier WACOM drivers which are installed on your x220t.

Go to Device manager and remove the following devices which are in the red outlined box below. Next examine each of the HID

Then click on each of the HID devices in the yellow box. If you see any which has a WACOM driver installed against it, remove it.

Drivers x220 touch Windows 8 Consumer Preview

Once you’ve done the above, re-start your machine and pray Smile Windows 8 Consumer Preview should logically automatically download and install new touch drivers.

Let me know how this works for you. Best of luck.

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Lenovo x220t drivers on Windows 8 Consumer Preview

By default not all the Lenovo drivers are loaded by the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. So you might need to manually load some of the drivers. For e.g. I wanted the Tablet buttons to be enabled, so I manually installed the Thinkpad Tablet Button Drivers(On most x220t there will be a directory called called SQTOOLS. Locate the TBBTN which is located under Drivers. SWTOOLS\DRIVERS\TBBTN) That got the Thinkpad x220 Tablet buttons working for me. So I could now manually rotate the screen or lock or power down if needed.

The other thing which I did was go to the device manager (Press Win key + W and type Device manager).

Device Manager on Windows 8

Choose the Other devices and select each device which shows up there, and choose “Update Driver Software…)

Then ask it “Browse my computer…” to locate the drivers, and point it to the SWTOOLS\DRIVERS directory. Do this for each device and Windows 8 should be able to load the appropriate drivers.

Drivers Directory

Lenovo x220 Driver Update on Windows 8 Consumer Preview

Then do a reboot…

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Installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview on Lenovo X220: Boot from VHD

Ok, finally I’ve got this figured out. I’ve tried using Virtual Box 4, VMware Player and both have been unsatisfactory as I couldn’t use the full power of my Lenovo x220 tablet and Windows 8 consumer preview.

Finally I tried out what Scott Hansselman suggests in his blog post out here 

Now following the above instructions resulted in my running the Windows 8 Consumer Preview in a virtual machine but with full fidelity, i.e. my Tablet touch screen works, and most importantly my WACOM pen works as well. So if both multi touch and pen support are important for you on your Lenovo x220 tablet, dive right into Scott’s instructions.

One caveat, when going thru Scott’s steps, as outlined in his post, he says in step 2 while loading Windows 8 Consumer Preview to shift to the command prompt and then use Diskpart to load the vhd which one has created earlier. However, what I want to point out here is that while doing this, you might not be able to locate the drive where the vhd is. For e.g. even though I created the VHD on the C drive on my pc, when you go to the command prompt you need to kind of switch between various drive letters to figure out which your original drive is where the Virtual Machine is, and then load it using DiskPart. That was the one place I was a little stumped but my friend Raj Chaudhuri helped me out on this one. So finally I have Windows 8 Consumer Preview loaded completely with full touch and pen support working on my Lenovo Thinkpad x220t tablet.

The best part of booting via VHD is the performance, it is just outstanding.

Additionally, once I loaded up Windows 8 Consumer Preview using the above method, after setup, windows update downloaded updated drivers for the display making the experience so much better.

Btw I’m typing this entire blog post via my Windows 8 Consumer Preview machine using Live Writer which I installed(btw Live Writer required the .net framework 3.5). But absolutely needed Windows Live Writer on my Windows 8 Consumer PC as I’m loving writing about my Windows 8 experience thru Windows 8. Hope this helps. Do share your experience.


Btw one quick shortcut for those who’re doing screen captures within the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, if you press the Windows key + PrtSc to capture any screen, Windows 8 automatically captures and stores the image in your Pictures folder. Isn’t that just super cool. Totally loving it.

One more thing for the Lenovo x220 users, I’ve noticed that the function keys don’t really work by default except the one for the brightness of the display, i.e. Fn+Home and Fn+End this brightens and dims the display.

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