06 December 2013

Getting Rid of Windows 8.1 Touch Screen Popups

So, this is just a quick tech tip so I don't lose track of this in the future. If you're using Windows 8.1, you may start seeing "helpful" pop-ups explaining new ways of using the OS. Designed to assist users in transitioning to the wonders of touch-screen bliss, they are nothing more than just plain bothersome if you do not have a touch-screen, especially since they don't go away until you do what the screen asks.

Look at this orange arrow, mocking you with it's angular laughter.

The image above is the popup I most frequently run into, but there are a few others that may show up as well. In theory you can use your mouse to perform whatever task is being shown, but for me that has proven problematic - partly because I'm running Windows inside a VM I guess.

To kill these there are a couple of things you can do:

  1. Disable the touchscreen device in the device manager. If you don't have one, it's useless anyway. Just open up the device manager, find the touch-screen, right click on it, and select "disable".
    Why does Windows add a touch-screen device
    when there isn't one? Who knows.
  2. Run a command prompt as administrator, then execute the following command:
    reg add HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EdgeUI /v DisableHelpStick /t reg_dword /d 1 /f

That's all there is to it. Simple fix, but there's no way I'd remember it next time I rebuild.