Jul 15, 2012

Lenovo ThinkPad X230 Tablet - Disable Multi-Touch Gestures

Gear: X230T Accessories.

Oh wonderful Windows Multi-Touch gestures of useless, we beg of you to disappear! and you will!!!

Multi-touch in Windows fairly useless, there are a few Wacom and some Microsoft related gestures. Both can actually get in the way of working with Microsoft OneNote. The reason is that sometimes you will set down the palm on the screen, and that can accidentally activate these gestures.

Problem 1
By setting your palm on the screen you may active 3D flip, switch to another program, and then you have to go back to MS OneNote.

Problem 2
While you can zoom in/out with a gesture in MS OneNote, the palm can activate zoom changes and then your document will have different zoom levels through its contents. This is very irritating because sometimes you will not that this has happened and then you have to resize everything to the proper... it's just a hassle and MS OneNote should be at 100% zoom level, unless you manually change it.

The solution
Disable multi-touch gestures.

There is an easy and a hard way of disabling multi-touch gestures. Luckily Wacom was smart enough to include a program that disables these gestures. (hurray!)

How to disable multi-touch gestures:
  • Navigate to "C:\Program Files\Tablet\ISD\".
  • Launch "ISD_TouchCPL.exe".
  • Disable the following check boxes:
    • Enable Gestures.
    • Enabled Advanced Gestures.
  • Click Apply and OK buttons.
  • Restart your X230T.

Once the system restarts those multi-touch gestures will be gone. Doing this is very useful because now MS OneNote will behave more consistently. You can do single finger panning and utilize the digitizer to write your notes.

Yes you can reactivate the gestures if you need to.

The next improvements would be to adjust MS OneNote gadgets (pages, notebooks, ribbons and the quick access toolbar) and even the Windows Taskbar position.

Side Note
If you want to disable the single finger touch you can do it with the ISD_TouchCPL program. This would mean that only the digitizer will be accepted. You can also disable the digitizer input, but that is under the Flicks window and you need Win 7 Professional and above.



  1. Hi Jesse, Awesome work.. I have ordered the outdoor X230T. I hope to use onenote alot. Can you run a simple tests for me? How would I easily scroll to get more space to write in onenote if I only have digitizer. Would the hover function work or a select and scroll down? Could I assign a second button (with the fujitsu) to "grab" and scroll down? Could you disable touch completely and let me know Thanks!

    1. With a 2 button digitizer you can enable a button to function as grab and drag for scrolling. If the Fujitsu Lifebook Digitizer had 3 buttons that is what I would have.

      1 Right Click.
      2. Eraser.
      3. Scrolling/panning.

      But there are only 1 and 2 button digitizers, so you will have to figure out what takes priority.

    2. I could picture that the wacom drivers could make a role for a long click as well. Thanks again!

  2. What are the multi-touch gestures other than the ones you had in the video? I remember something like a lock gesture (a five finger pinch) on the X220 tablet which you talked about, and I can't seem to get it to work on my X230 tablet... What are the gestures? I'm more of a person who likes gestures...

    1. You are right. Some gestures shown on the X220T do not work with the X230T.

      The full list of gestures is located at:
      C:\Program Files\Tablet\ISD\AppGestures.xml

      Better guide on what this all means.

    2. Hmm. I was looking more for the four and five finger gesture, but thanks anyway. I can't seem to find anything in there relating to the four and five finger gestures. I have figured out the lock gesture, I was just doing it too quickly... It would be great if I could modify those, though, I've got some ideas on how you could make windows 7 a lot better tablet OS with them that I'd like to try out - not too happy with Windows 8.

    3. AppGestures.xml is the full list of gestures. 3D Flip is a 4 finger gesture that can be seen in the file, search for it and you will find it.

      If you/I were smart to reprogram that .xml file we can add new gestures. Modify and save, restart pc, and the added gestures should work.

      The X230T has the same amount of touch points as the X220T (5 touch points)

    4. You're right, there is something about 3D Flip in there. I just can't seem to understand where the amount of fingers and that stuff is specified, I'll have to take a very close look at it sometime and pick everything apart.. I'll have to try it out, I understand xml files, so it should work, but it will need a lot of experimenting. For now my X230T is going back soon to lenovo to be repaired (warranty issue), but after that I might try some stuff. My hope is to get something going where you can do all your window manipulating (like resizing, moving, maximizing, minimizing, etc.) with four and five finger gestures, although something tells me it's an unrealistic goal... I'll report back if I manage to do anything.

    5. It would be neat to have the X220T and X230T AppGestures.xml files side by side. We could figure out how to add some of the X220T gestures to the X230T. For new key combinations we need to figure out what the existing characters mean, and then write our key combinations. But I'm not the biggest fan of those multi-touch gestures because they can get in the way of doing things (due to accidental activation).

    6. I could probably get someone's X220T AppGestures file in some forums, but what does the X230T not have? I mentioned the gesture to lock the screen, except that I figured that one out - in fact, I was able to do all of the gestures that you mentioned in the X220T video. I was just moving my fingers too quickly for the lock screen gesture to work, I had to do it slower. If there is anything that I missed, though, it would be interesting to add it - as I understand it, though, there is only 5 finger pinch for lock, 5 finger swipe up or down for showing desktop or restoring windows, and 4 fingers four Aero Flip 3D. I'm assuming you do more with the pen than with your fingers - I use the pen almost exclusively for inking etc., and use my finger for almost everything else.

    7. I might have moved my fingers too quickly myself and missed a few of the gestures. I will not know if that was the case because I do not want to turn the gestures back on.

      This is going to sound extremely arrogant... but I'm not interested in multi-touch gestures at all. As much as I would like to see them work properly, they just don't. The digitizer adds another layer of what the system has to handle, and because the software (Windows and programs) are not really made to deal (properly) with digitizer and multi-touch... well the system does not work well. The multi-touch may work well enough without the digitizer, and the digitizer well enough without the multi-touch.

      I want to do things smoothly and avoid mistakes (which can now take 2X the time to fix). I'm thinking of getting a SpaceNavigator for panning and inking smoothly. With such a tool I might even disable the finger touch input (which takes a tap to begin working after using the digitizer).

    8. That's fine... some people don't like the multi-touch stuff too much. I'm using the touch screen a lot for day to day tasks - the four and five finger stuff doesn't work that well, but the rest is pretty good - and I'm assuming you're using it in laptop mode but turning it into a tablet for inking etc. I guess I'll post in a forum if I find something.

  3. Hi Jesse! What about a review of the built-in 720p webcam? Does it really can provide 720p video recording? Does it have enough low light sensitivity?

    1. Sorry for comment to the wrong post...

    2. http://www.jessebandersen.com/2012/07/lenovo-thinkpad-x230-tablet-some.html

  4. Thanks for this great review. They don't bring many thinkpads to my country so a friend will bring one over. I would like to know a little about the single finger touch use. Does it respond well?
    When in tablet mode and in the internet, can i touch the address bar and then type the address via an on-screen keyboard? Or do I need to go laptop mode?
    Compared to other tablets, is the touch lacking in any of the abilities?
    Finally, do you think Windows 8 will fully function with it when it is released? As I understand you had a few driver issues.
    Thank you!

    1. The single finger touch responds well. Depending on the browser you will have ease of touch browsing, there is no need to go into laptop mode.

      Windows 7 tablets do not do as well on touch capabilities as Android and iOS devices because the software was created for mouse input. Windows 8 is touch focused, therefore it will be more Android/iOS like, while still retaining a desktop interface.

      I have not tested Windows 8, therefore I do not know about driver issues related to the finger touch.

      The main reason to get a X230T would be that it can support finger touch when needed, digitizer pen input when needed, mouse input when needed, and so on. It is a device that can handle all of these different input methods, which some people like myself need.

    2. Thank you so much for your quick reply. I am currently on a Thinkpad z60m. Its great but it's getting slow, plus its around 7 pounds so in comparison the x230t is light :)

      I'm not sure I understand the mobile broadband feature. Its says "Mobile Broadband upgradable". Does that mean I can put in my 3G sim card and it will work? Is that on the standard/basic model?

      Or do I need the Qualcomm Gobi 3000?

      Also, sorry if this sounds stupid but would appreciate it if you could let me know: does the on-screen keyboard just pop up on its own when needed in tablet mode? (like the android/os tablets).

      Thank you!

    3. "Mobile Broadband Upgradable" means that the system has a sim card slot built in, and you would STILL have to buy a mobile broadband card. Lenovo lists two compatible cards which are: Qualcomm Gobi 3000 and Ericsson HSPA + WWAN Minicard.

      The TabTip (Tablet PC Input Panel, aka on scree keyboard) does not have a consistent behavior in Windows 7. This depends on whether or not programs have the proper gadget class. For example a GUI text box created by a Microsoft class structure, or a GUI text box created by a programmer on a 2D/3D canvas. Both look the same to the user, but to TabTip only one is a text box. Windows 8 is supposed to be more consistent at the on screen keyboard than earlier versions of Windows.

    4. I'm still confused. If it has a sim card slot, then why can't I just put my GSM card in? Or do you mean, it just has space for another device (Gobi 3000) and that my GSM card will go into the Gobi 3000 which is attached to the slot?
      Sorry for my lack of knowledge on this.

      From what you say regarding the on-screen keyboard I understand then that it may or may not work depending on the box I click in? So if its an address bar of internet explorer then it will work but if it's some funky box in some program, it may not?