Tablet PC 101: Reprogram Those Hardware Buttons

image I’ve written before regarding my disappointment that Lenovo removed the Nav Dial from the X200. In fact, I was secretly hoping they would improve upon the Nav Dial by making it a scroll wheel and placing on the side of the screen. The scroll function is something I love to do when in portrait mode, and I just have not gotten comfortable using pen-based scroll gestures  – they don’t respond quick enough, can get laggy, and I sometimes accidentally select text. I prefer hardware-based buttons or wheel solutions.

While watching Monday Night Football last night and using the X200 to browse websites, I had an epiphany  — why not reprogram two of the hardware buttons with scroll up / scroll down functions? I reprogrammed two buttons that I hardly ever use ( button lock and Tablet Shortcut Menu )  and now I have my scroll navigation function back!

Here is how I did it. By the way, these steps don’t just apply to the X200 — you should be able to do them for any tablet pc that have available buttons. These steps apply to Vista, but are also supported in XP, too:

  1. Go to Start, Control Panel, Tablet PC Settings
  2. Go to Buttons
  3. The default orientation is All Orientations, but you can customize each of the following choices for each orientation if you prefer ( ie, set a button to do something different in primary portrait vs primary landscape).
  4. Select Button Lock and press Change
  5. On the first drop down menu, select Scroll Up, and then press Ok
  6. Select Tablet Shortcut Menu and press Change
  7. On the first drop down menu, select Scroll Down, and then press Ok
  8. That’s it — now when browsing a website or a document, you can scroll up and down using hardware buttons!