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I am the unwilling recipient of Windows 8. Lenovo couldn't fix the new Windows 7 Ultrabook I bought, so they sent me a Yoga laptop, with touch-screen and Windows 8.

Once I bought a start menu replacement, I don't mind Windows 8 too much - it's ugly, but most things work as well as Windows 7. But the thing that drives me crazy, endlessly, is the virtual keyboard popping up when I'm trying to do something else (well, just about anytime, since I almost never use it to type). It's like a giant Clippy that covers half the screen.

I haven't figured out what causes it to pop up. It seems pretty random, and sometimes it goes away before I can even reach for the escape key. Sometimes it comes up when I'm typing, sometimes when my hands are nowhere near the keyboard. Sometimes several times a minute, sometimes not for hours.

Any suggestions?

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Need a screenshot to understand it properly. –  avirk Apr 21 '13 at 4:08

2 Answers 2

The fastest and most reliable way to disable the Windows 8 on screen keyboard is by stopping the service that starts it and disabling it from running.

How To: Disable the Windows On-Screen Keyboard Service

  • Press the Windows key + R
  • Type "services.msc" and press Enter
  • Scroll down to "Touch screen keyboard and handwriting panel"
  • You can either right click and "Stop" or you can double-click and change it from "Automatic" startup to either "Manual" or "Disabled".


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note this also kills the on screen writing. –  MDT Guy May 9 '13 at 22:30

Check if it is a on screen keyboard:

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Or a TabTip keyboard

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For On-Screen Keyboard go to Control Panel -> Ease of Access -> Ease of Access Center -> Use the computer without a mouse or keyboard and uncheck Use On-Screen Keyboard (if checked). Also check if the Windows + Volume Up key do something. It could be set to On-Screen keyboard in Ease of Access Center -> Make touch tablets easier to use.

For TabTip keyboard, you can remove it by removing any shortcut for it from taskbar ( right click -> toolbars -> Touch Keyboard) and then killing process by typing this in cmd:

taskkill /F /IM TabTip*

(You could also consider putting this command into a batch file and executing it at startup as windows 8 restarts TabTip processes if it finds a touch input device, though it doesn't come forward on its own)

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