Installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview on Lenovo x220t with VMWare Player

I had earlier installed Windows 8 Developer Preview on my machine. So this time around installing the Windows 8 consumer preview was easier.

You can download the necessary files from

Specifically here you can get the setup program:

And the ISO is available here:

The VMWare player mentioned that an upgrade was available to VMWare Workstation which is a paid product, I didn’t choose to install it and it then provided the option to upgrade the player to the latest VMWare Player 4.0.2 build-591240.

Once I did the above, I loaded the Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO into VMWare and the install process was pretty much a breeze.

I first ran the Windows 8 Consumer Preview Setup on the host machine to just check the compatibility of my system. I was quite surprised that Microsoft Security Essentials was not compatible.

Compatability Report 29-02-2012 20-31-55

Next I ran the setup within the VM. It asked for the product key… which I’d got from the setup wizard. Entered it.

29-02-2012 21-40-54 Product Key

Then it asked me if I wanted to keep my personal files. I chose yes.

29-02-2012 21-41-30 Personal Files

Next it told that this might take a while… 🙂 so I waited patiently… as I’m installing within a VM and I’m doing an upgrade from the Developer Preview…

29-02-2012 21-42-20 this might take a while

After installation it started configuring Windows Updates

29-02-2012 22-02-55 Configuring Windows Updates

Now the strange picture, any guesses what it is?

29-02-2012 22-04-10 Preparing

Settings came next, I chose to customize the settings…

29-02-2012 22-09-45 Settings

Finally logged into the Windows 8 Consumer Preview

29-02-2012 22-15-25 loggingin

Finally the Metro UI, pure awesomeness…

29-02-2012 22-15-40 MetroUI

After this I ran windows update, and it downloaded a few updates.

However, I needed to install the VMWare Additions, this ensured that the display took the full screen, I had to do a re-boot, and then could use Windows 8 consumer preview in full screen. Note: you need to have 1366×768 to experience the snap view correctly.

Multi-touch worked perfectly, no need for any calibrations. The only issue is the support for the Wacom pen, I need to figure this one out.

I’m also going to try installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview on a separate partition. Hopefully that will resolve the pen issue, as the Lenovo x220t is one of the devices which the Windows team is using to test.

Some things I noticed, which were wonderful was the performance of Windows 8, it just totally rocks. Also I found this release to be far superior in terms of keyboard + touch navigation.


About sanjayshetty

Sanjay Shetty is currently putting the finishing touches on his book, the Brand Advocacy quick start guide, which covers his framework for building a brand advocacy program. He blogs at
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7 Responses to Installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview on Lenovo x220t with VMWare Player

  1. Derek says:

    I have the same problem with the Wacom digitizer (pen). It does not work at all. I attempted to install the Lenovo WACOM drivers and it says “A supported tablet was not found on the system”. In the systems properties page it says “Pen and Touch Input Available with 2 Touch Points”. Looking for solutions…

  2. sanjayshetty says:

    Derek, had the exact issue 🙂
    I next tried a direct boot from vhd. That works brilliantly with pen and touch and super performance. I’ll shortly post about it.

  3. Chong says:


    I “upgraded” my x220t with Win8 CP and the multi-touch screen is not working. (Note, this is not on a VM player.) Tried to install the driver but no luck. Any ideas to get the ‘touch’ working on the x220t?


    • sanjayshetty says:

      Firstly if I’ve understood you right you’ve gone and installed Windows 8 Community Preview directly on your Lenovo x220t which had Windows 7 professional pre-loaded…
      Please confirm if you had Windows 7 pre-loaded?

      After installation did Windows Update, update any of your drivers at all?

      Also when you say that touch isn’t working, is it only touch or is the pen also not working? Also what does it say in the System properties page? does it say “Pen and Touch Input Available with 2 Touch Points”…

      Here’s my opinion on what the trouble is, the previous Windows 7 Lenovo drivers on the system. Here is what I suggest, un-install the previous Lenovo touch and pen drivers and Windows 8 logically will automatically install the new drivers. (A similar issue in a different area is what someone on the Windows Forums had experienced with the pre-installed Lenovo drivers see here

      Additionally, I’d highly recommend you submit your query to the specific Windows 8 Consumer Preview Forum out here

      Also to anyone else reading this I’d strongly suggest do not install beta pre-release software on production systems!

      • Chong says:

        Hi Sanjay,

        Thanks for replying. Answers/clarifications.

        1. I had Windows 7 Ultimate x64 installed on my X220T. I upgraded that to Win8 going through the Win8 installation utility (or what ever it’s called).

        2. I’m not sure where to look for the “Pen and Touch Input Available with 2 Touch Points”. Where is the “Systems properties” page? The new interface to locate some things are a bit difficult to navigate at the moment.

        3. In the “Programs and Features”, I don’t see apps/drivers that is “Lenovo touch and pen drivers” or anything like that. I see a “Lenovo Systems Interface Driver” and other Lenovo/Thinkpad named programs.

        4. When I say touch doesn’t work, the Pen works fine. It’s the touch with the finger that is not working. I was hoping to use my finger to swipe through the Metro screens.

        Thanks again.

      • sanjayshetty says:

        To locate the driver check out the Device Manager (Key combination, WinKey+W, and then type device manager to get to it).
        See my other post on updating drivers for the Lenovo x220 out here

        Similarly to see System Properties – Key combination WinKey+W and then type System.

  4. sanjayshetty says:

    Please note after trying VMWare, VirtualBox etc. I finally used the boot from VHD feature in Windows 7 to load the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, which enabled me to have both full touch and pen experience on my Lenovo x220 tablet. This seems to work the best and you can read about how to do it yourself out here

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