How do I use the Metro On Screen Keyboard in Native or Simulator on a Mouse and Keyboard system


  • I am developing an app for Metro for the first app contest via VirtualBox since can't upgrade my install of Windows 7 to the 8 Developer Preview.  I am using the Simulator to test and develop my code for tablets since I can't get or even close to afford a tablet that runs the Windows 8 Developer Preview.  My question is how do I get an app to bring up the "Metro" on screen keyboard for text entry?  Do I have to code it to bring up the touch keyboard or does it pop up automatically when entering text?  I have never even seen it except for on the Videos.  It doesn't pop up on the "Simulator" for any metro apps!  Does it move my app up on the screen when it pops up or do I have to program animation for it?  Basically where is it and how do I bring it up? 

    Oh yeah this is a JavaScript project.  (I am an expert in Xaml, Silverlight, C#, VB, HTML, JavaScript)

    Please help!


    SB Software Developer


    I should also mention I have to disable the VBox client display driver to get the Simulator to start

    • Edited by Sacha Bwin Friday, December 30, 2011 3:43 AM
    Thursday, December 29, 2011 10:22 PM

All replies

  • I S,

    I have no idea what VBox is but.  From the debugger, choose the little green arrow next to the word Debug.  You will see a small drop down arrow.  Pull that down and select Simulator.

    Debug your application with that simulator.

    To pull up the soft keyboard in any text field choose the finger pointer (highlighted below) and click in the text area:


    Jeff Sanders (MSFT)
    Friday, December 30, 2011 9:18 PM
  • I had already tried this before posting.  This does not work!  Nothing pops up at all in any text field when I choose the hand which is the result I already had.  And i just used VBox as short for Virtual Box 4.1.8 since I already stated I was using it earlier in the post!


    Also my app uses SVG Text tag to type into so the system will not know to bring up the keyboard automatically so I have to force it to bring up the on screen keyboard.  Do I really have to reprogram this entire app in C# days before the contest deadline?

    It's almost complete except for this problem!

    SB Software Developer


    • Edited by Sacha Bwin Thursday, January 5, 2012 9:49 AM
    Thursday, January 5, 2012 9:40 AM
  • Hi SB,

    This sounds like either a problem with VBox or the installation of your OS.  I cannot reproduce the problem in the simulator.  I am able to use the hand pointer in the simulator and when I tap into a text field, the keyboard comes up fine.  You could engage VBox support to see what they are doing that may interfere with this, try installing the developer preview on a physical box or try to re-install the OS.

    As far as the SVG Text object goes.  The SVG Text object does not support editing natively so you would not be able to use that to automatically bring up the keyboard.  You may need to create a simply input keyboard to get around that problem.



    Jeff Sanders (MSFT)
    Thursday, January 5, 2012 8:37 PM
  • I just started rewritting the app in C#. I am just going to guess that it's working properly. It worked GREAT with SVG except for this problem, oh well no sleep this week.
    SB Software Developer
    • Edited by Sacha Bwin Thursday, January 5, 2012 9:36 PM
    Thursday, January 5, 2012 9:35 PM