Vista on a Tablet

I’ve been trying Vista RC2 on a Toshiba Portege M400. Toshiba describe this as “Vista ready” and provide drivers in various states of beta. Installation was fairly painful, but that’s to be expected at the bleeding edge. I put in a new hard drive for Vista, and immediately hit problems because the installation lacks a suitable SATA driver and could not see the hard drive.

Thanks to Ken Schaefer, who had been there before me, I overcame that one. It was still a struggle, not knowing which of Toshiba’s drivers were better or worse than those which Vista has already installed. I also confronted the worst of Vista’s UAC (User Account Control). What is so frustrating is when you have to tell Vista again and again that yes, you want to install this thing. I lost count of how many times the UAC elevation prompt appeared when installing the Bluetooth stack. Installing Vista on this Tablet PC was far more arduous than when I put the same OS on a desktop computer.

Still, I got a reasonable result. There is just one remaining “unknown device” in device manager, which I believe is a hard drive protection utility and not critical. The machine itself is fine, runs Aero Glass nicely and scores 3 on the Vista performance scale. The Tablet side of things seems to work OK, though the polished screen is prone to building up a static charge as your hand rubs against it, which isn’t ideal; I didn’t get this problem with the Acer Tablet I was using before. But when Toshiba get all the drivers and utilities properly sorted, this looks likely to be an excellent Vista Tablet. More in due course.


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