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need ALT key in on-screen keyboard

    Question

  • The pop up touch keyboard does not have an ALT key.  The ALT key is an incredibly useful convention in Windows and missing it on the touch screen keyboard breaks the user experience of many traditional Windows application.  Please consider adding the ALT key onto the onscreen keyboard.  This is mose important for touch-only devices like tablets that do not have an external keyboard.
    Shan McArthur www.shanmcarthur.net Check out the commercial edition of xRM portals @ www.adxstudio.com
    Saturday, September 17, 2011 5:04 PM

Answers

  • Hi Sam,

    Thank you for posting your feedback, we want to make sure we get the right info including your log files. Can you also submit feedback using the Windows Feedback Tool from the Connect Site associated with your Windows Developer Preview program? If you’re an MSDN subscriber, the information on how to join the Connect program is included on the download page where you installed Windows Developer Preview. There’s a link to the Connect site and an invitation code that you can click on to join using a Windows Live ID account. If you’re not an MSDN subscriber follow this limited use linkto join the Connect program and then follow the steps here.  

    If you are prompted for an invitation code, please enter the following key. MSDN-76H9-3CFP

    https://connect.microsoft.com/site1147/InvitationUse.aspx?ProgramID=7221&InvitationID=MSDN-76H9-3CFP

     

    Thanks,


    Marilyn
    Thursday, September 29, 2011 12:39 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hello Shan McArthur,

    The On Screen Keyboard in Windows Developer Preview, does have the Alt keys. They are either side of the Space Bar. There are some additional Keys as well on the On-Screen Keyboard; Nav, Mv Up, Mv DN, Dock and Fade.

    Go to Windows 7 and in the Start Search box, type in OSK. This will bring up the On Screen Keyboard.
    Then go to the Windows Developer Preview version and go to the On Screen Keyboard. Do a comparision of the two On Screen Keyboard versions between the two operating sytems. Most of the keys are in the same place except for the Fn Key which has been moved to the left side of the keyboard.

    Let me know if you still have questions.

    Marilyn
    Monday, September 19, 2011 12:31 AM
    Moderator
  • No the ALT keys are not there for Windows 8 developer preview, but they are there for my OSK on Windows 7.

    My bottom row of keys, from left to right are Ctrl, &123, happy face, space, left cursor, right cursor, and keyboard.  I am frustrated at the missing keys, like cursor up, cursor down, tab, etc.


    Shan McArthur www.shanmcarthur.net Check out the commercial edition of xRM portals @ www.adxstudio.com
    Monday, September 19, 2011 3:37 AM
  • I just checked the on screen keyboard of the WDP, and can confirm what Marilyn said - it has two ALT keys, one on each side of the keyboard. It also has the cursor up and down.

    Are you using English as your keyboard language or a different language?

    Monday, September 19, 2011 4:14 AM
  • There is a difference between the on screen keyboard for the WDP and the keyboard which auto-pops up when a text box is clicked. I have no clue why.

    The on-screen keyboard (launched through search) has the alt keys - but the on screen keyboard (auto launched) does not. I do not know how to launch the touch screen keyboard without a touch screen...

    Monday, September 19, 2011 4:33 AM
  • I can confirm, doing a search for OSK brings up a totally different keyboard layout, but simply typing in a text box in WDP (such as what I'm using now) does not bring up a keyboard with Alt keys.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 4:40 AM
  • There is a difference between the on screen keyboard for the WDP and the keyboard which auto-pops up when a text box is clicked. I have no clue why.

    The on-screen keyboard (launched through search) has the alt keys - but the on screen keyboard (auto launched) does not. I do not know how to launch the touch screen keyboard without a touch screen...

    Looks like you are correct.

    Here is a screenshot of the Windows 8 touch keyboard without the ALT keys:

    http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2011/technology/1109/gallery.windows_8/5.html

     

    And another keyboard with no ALT keys:

    http://www.seanpercival.com/blog/2011/06/02/microsoft-windows-8-split-keyboard-ui/

    Monday, September 19, 2011 4:46 AM
  • Since I was not using a Touch Screen when I was testing, I only saw the one On-Screen Keyboard.
    However, there are two "virtual"/"soft"/"on-screen" keyboards in Windows Developer Preview. The first is the “On-screen Keyboard” also known as “OSK”. This is primarily designed for users who have difficulty using a physical keyboard. The OSK has a few changes in Windows Developers Preview with the addition of some new buttons to aid navigation and so forth. This one has the keypad version with the numbers at the top starting with 789.

    The second is the "Touch keyboard and Handwriting", formerly known as the "Tablet PC Input Panel" in Windows 7 or "TabTip". This is the default touch keyboard that users will be interacting with Windows Developer Preview. This one has fewer keys and is primarily designed for text entry and the Del, UP/Down and Alt have been removed.

    Thank you for the correction.

    Marilyn

    Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:10 PM
    Moderator
  • That is a very bad design.  Here is the reason:  when the user has no keyboard, the onscreen keyboard that is rendered for them is missing critical keys, therefore some key operations are impossible.  I am using my tablet and cannot use the ALT key because of this design - same with cursor up/down, home/end, ...  I would like to reiterate my original suggestion - to add these keys back.
    Shan McArthur www.shanmcarthur.net Check out the commercial edition of xRM portals @ www.adxstudio.com
    Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:28 PM
  • With the touch screen keyboard, can you not bring up the On-Screen Keyboard by typing in OSK.exe? This keyboard has full functionality with the keys you need.

    If you want to leave feedback about the touch Keypad, then go to thread listed below and use the instructions from BillFill's post on Wednesday, September 14, 2011 8:27 PM and use the Connect website to give feedback on this issue. Bill's give a code to use on the Connect website.
    Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:45 PM
    Moderator
  • I just tried that and the user experience was not sufficient.  It always launches the OSK in windows mode.  You then have to flip back to your metro app to use it.  if you minimize the keyboard, it is gone and you have to re-launch it all over again.  If you don't minimize it, then you can't see what you are working on.  Bottom line - this workaround is not usable.  It should be as simple as a button on the touch keyboard to switch modes.
    Shan McArthur www.shanmcarthur.net Check out the commercial edition of xRM portals @ www.adxstudio.com
    Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:58 PM
  • Since the workaround does not work for your issue, please leave Feedback on this important issue at the link I included in the post above.

    Sincerely,

    Marilyn

    Wednesday, September 21, 2011 11:56 PM
    Moderator
  • How can I bring up the new onscreen keyboard? I have Windows 8 installed on a resistive screen UMPC (Viliv S5), and it pops up *occasionally* - usually at the Lock screen. But even when I have the onscreen keyboard icon running on the taskbar, and click on it, all I get is a black bar at the bottom of the screen saying "dock". No onscreen keyboard, no TIP handwriting box. Screen rez seems to make no difference - the Viliv S5 supports all the Metro resolution requirements, but that does not make the keyboard show. Is there any way to get this up manually?
    Friday, September 23, 2011 12:30 PM
  • I agree with Shan on this & I thought that what we are doing here is exactly that, leaving feedback on it... I tried to go to that page, enter my details etc., but all I eventually got was kicked back & asked to do it all over again.

    Since I'm considering using my BUILD Samsung tablet as an iPad replacement, I actually use the on-screen keyboard quite a bit & frankly, there's more than enough space around the edges to fit in a couple of small Up/Down, Del & Alt keys.

    The OSK works great mostly, sometimes I do get to spots where it totally obscures the text box I need to type in to though.  You're welcome to direct me to where I should report that :-)

     

    Regards,

    Sam

     

    Thursday, September 29, 2011 12:26 AM
  • Hi Sam,

    Thank you for posting your feedback, we want to make sure we get the right info including your log files. Can you also submit feedback using the Windows Feedback Tool from the Connect Site associated with your Windows Developer Preview program? If you’re an MSDN subscriber, the information on how to join the Connect program is included on the download page where you installed Windows Developer Preview. There’s a link to the Connect site and an invitation code that you can click on to join using a Windows Live ID account. If you’re not an MSDN subscriber follow this limited use linkto join the Connect program and then follow the steps here.  

    If you are prompted for an invitation code, please enter the following key. MSDN-76H9-3CFP

    https://connect.microsoft.com/site1147/InvitationUse.aspx?ProgramID=7221&InvitationID=MSDN-76H9-3CFP

     

    Thanks,


    Marilyn
    Thursday, September 29, 2011 12:39 AM
    Moderator