When using Laptop with touch screen and physical keyboard, in application such as Microsoft Word or browser, tapping screen to focus on input area and entering with keyboard gets interrupted by annoying touch keyboard popups.
One way is to disable touch keyboard. You can disable by disabling TabletInputService. Launch command prompt with administrator, and enter
net stop TabletInputService sc config TabletInputService start= disabled
to disable service. To re-enable,
sc config TabletInputService start= auto net start TabletInputService
will do. You can also change configuration from Service under Computer Management. However, there are many products which has both tablet mode and laptop mode came to market after release of Windows 8. You don’t want to reconfigure every time you change mode, don’t you?
Best way is to only popup touch keyboard when you click on touch keyboard on taskbar, or keyboard from Setting Charm. But unfortunately, there’s no such option at this time.
Using batch file is one way, but I don’t like ugly batch file icon sitting on desktop, and “do you really want to run this” UAC message asking every time. So, I’ve made a tool for easy switching. Please use at your own risk.
Download, unzip, and run TouchKeySwitch.exe to install tool.
After setup, one service program and tool will be installed. Default (after setup, or after Windows startup) is set to touch keyboard disabled state. You will see “TouchKey Onetime” and “TouchKey OnOff” in applications.
TouchKey OnOff will enable / disable touch keyboard. (No message shown, switches to desktop if called outside desktop.)
TouchKey Onetime will launch touch keyboard disregarding to state, and automatically sets to disabled after touch keyboard window is closed. Onetime can be used from desktop only.
You can pin shortcut to desktop, or you can assign keyboard shortcut for easier access. Select shortcut, and open folder.
Right click shortcut, open property.
Assign shortcut key you like. For example, assign “Ctrl + Shift + T” to Touchkey OnOff.
This will make entering “Ctrl + Shift + T” switch back and forth touch keyboard enable / disable.
Pin Onetime to taskbar, and you can click on icon to instant touch keyboard popup only when you want (only for desktop, though).
Hope Microsoft will improve in next Windows 8 update release.
If you no longer need the tool, just uninstall from Programs and Features, and tool will be gone, back to original state.
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