OneNote Dell XT Tablet fix

I heard reports that if you had the new Dell XT Tablet some things in OneNote were not clickable and you were probably having a hard time using OneNote.  Whenever you tried to click on something it would end up being a drag action.  Well some Devs on the team took a new Dell XT Tablet and debugged it and found out what was going on.  The problem is with the NTrig applet which is installed by Dell  and during the first couple logons, it sets a bunch of default registry values which causes problems.  They have posted a way to fix this, but it modifies the system registry so please take caution before messing with the registry.

  1. Click Start, Run, type regedit, and click ok (acknowledge the Vista UAC prompt if it comes up).
  2. In the registry editor, navigate to "Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop"
  3. Locate the DragHeight and DragWidth values in the right hand pane
  4. Select the DragHeight value, click the Edit menu, and select Modify (you can double click as well to modify)
  5. In the Value Data field, type 4 and click ok. IMPORTANT! You need to do this step even if the registry editor already shows the value as 4!
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with the DragWidth field.
  7. Logoff or reboot your computer.

If these steps donโ€™t work for you please let us know in the comments and we will get in touch with you (or just email).  Also note that with time a new user is created on the system this tool will run again and you will have to repeat these steps for that profile.  We I understand we (Microsoft, not OneNote) is in touch with Dell regarding this issue.

Thanks a bunch Jerry, Jason & Ilyaโ€ฆand I hope this works for everyone else out there!  Enjoy the nice new Tablets ๐Ÿ™‚

Comments (31)

  1. SJH says:

    Thanks for posting this.

    The issue also affected the folder tree within the Navigation Pane on Outlook 2007 and, within Firefox, links on pages and even buttons on the Bookmarks Toolbar Folder, and insofar as I can tell this hack likewise fixes them, too.

  2. Alex Parker says:

    I believe this has been fixed with the lates NTrig software from Dell.  Thanks for posting the fix as it was very frustrating!  Especially the issue with folder clicking in Outlook as described in the previous comment.

  3. Jamie Hill says:

    I have the latest Dell N-Trig software installed on my XT, and I was still having issues.  

    I tried the registry tweak above, and it cleared up my problem with Onenote.

    I was also having an issue with Firefox where links would only be selected after clicking them — they would not be followed.  Usually a second click would follow the link.  After doing the registry change Firefox is back to normal as well.

    Thank you!

  4. ionman says:

    Man! You just made my day! Thank you so much!

  5. litlsi says:

    Wow.  I can’t thank you enough for this work around.  This has saved my daily tablet-using sanity by leaps and bounds.

    Also, as mentioned above, I had previously attempted to use the latest nTrig download (03/28) provided by Dell.  However, the issue remained..

    This did the trick.  Man, I wish I could donate to your cause in some way ๐Ÿ™‚


  6. G says:

    Wonderful. Been on a support call with Dell over this for almost 2 months and this fixes it in 2 minutes. Glad its finally sorted ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Peter Lafford says:


    I performed the Registry Hack, and indeed have the expected mouse functionality in OneNote and Firefox, but all of a sudden, in MS Word 2007 I’ve lost scroll bar functionality with the mouse (either touch pad or pen).  The right-side scroll on the touch pad still works.  Then when exiting Word, it crashes. (PowerPoint seems ok.) I’m doing Windows Updates as we speak.  Will report back.

  8. plafford says:

    Office Updates applied; still no mouse control on Scroll Bars in Word 2007.  (The touch pad right-side up-and-down scroll and bottom left-right scroll does work, as a temporary work around, but not forever.)  

    Any new ideas?

  9. Tom Russo says:

    Hi all,

    I’m Tom Russo from Microsoft’s Tablet team.  I’m glad to hear that this fix has worked for most of you.


    This did the trick.  Man, I wish I could donate to your cause in some way ๐Ÿ™‚


    Thank you–we appreciate it.  What helps us more than anything else is when our users tell others about their positive experiences with their tablets and tablet-enabled software like OneNote.  You might also mention that do our best to address issues like this as fast as we can ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Peter: We are thus far unable to repro the problem in Word that you have described.  I’d like to ask a few questions that will help us narrow things down.

    1. Does this bug occur in other apps?  Specifically, are Excel, PowerPoint or Outlook affected?

    2. The XT has two sets of mouse buttons, both above and below the touchpad, and it supports pen and touch input.  Are you able to grab the scrollbar in Word using any of these?  If so, which ones?

    3. Does Word still crash on exit, or did Office Update fix that?

    4. Is there anything unusual about your system that might be related to this?  For example, did you reinstall Vista?  Install uncommon software or peripherals?  Make modifications to the hardware or anything like that?



  10. Peter Lafford says:

    Thanks for asking Tom.


    1. Seems to be only Word 2007.  Outlook, PPT, Excel seem ok.  Even editing a new msg in Outlook, which I think is using Word.

    2. No mouse control works to grab the bar (or even position the cursor in the doc.  Not the touchpad, the pointing stick, or the pen-on-screen.

    3. Word still crashes on exit.

    4. I wiped and installed Vista Business from the CD provided by Dell, since it came with XP installed.  So I had to install the drivers, too.  

    If no-one else is having the problem, it’s probably my issue.  I’ll reinstall, and try the latest NTrig drivers from DELL site. That will wait ’til next week, however, since I’m travelling.

    Again, thanks for the individual attention.

  11. Mike Williams says:

    The most annoying NTrig issue for me at present is that it crashes on my Latitude XT if I boot with the Mediabase connected.

    Error NTrigApplet.


    Can’t Connect to Driver: Failure to Open device).



    The result is that I’m stuck in touchscreen mode and all N-Trig software fails from this point on (applet etc).

    (Running Windows XP SP2. Tried the v.1.44, A02 driver update from Dell (see link from Alex Parker above) but it does not address this particular problem).

  12. Richard Jansen says:

    Thanks! It worked for me in Onenote. No problems so far.

  13. Wade Wilson says:

    Worked like a charm.  You don’t know how much effort I spent with Dell on this issue.  I’m glad someone figured it out.

  14. Randy Gonzalez says:

    I’m having the same issue with excel trying to drag or resize pictures or inserting shapes. I tried both of those fixes, still not working.

  15. Randy Gonzalez says:

    Only in excel 2007. i tried the drag function in excel 2003, it seems to be working fine.

  16. Bastian J. says:

    The fix above worked for me fine aswell – could not reproduce the excel problem with excel 2007. Did you try to first rightclick a picture and the resize it? What happens when you just click <with pen or touch) – does a lnk open?

  17. Robert Taylor says:

    Tried the registry fix, but Still have the problem.

    Running Vista sP1

    one note

    Installed latest N- Trig utility and driver from Dell.

    Any ideas?

    My error message is

    ntrig applet can;t connect to driver

  18. abby says:

    oh my god, thank you thank you thank you.  I am using an HP Compaq  2710p and this fixed it for me too – so it must not just be Dell tablets.

    For the last year that I’ve had the tablet, I thought OneNote was just totally broken with the mouse.  Everytime, I’d use it with the keyboard, it was just endless frustration so I’ve really only been using it for handwritten journals and note taking.  I am so enamored with OneNote though I really wanted to use it for more things – so I finally broke down and googled for the problem.  Since I don’t have a Dell though, I overlooked this many times.  After over an hour, in desperation, I pulled this up and decided to try it.

    You should really see if Microsoft can post this someplace more visible like on the OneNote product support page!

  19. Richard says:

    Add one more to the list of relieved XT owners. Thanks so much for the fix!

  20. Mark says:

    The registry fix worked for a few logoffs, but the next day I got the same problem. So, I repeated the steps and rebooted the machine, which I did not do previously. Seems to work fine now.


  21. abby says:

    Yeah, this keeps resetting itself on me as well.  Again, this is on the Compaq 2710p – not the Dell.

  22. abby says:

    And it just reset itself again, but I haven’t even rebooted since it was last working so I don’t understand what is causing it to get reset.  Is there a way to lock down a registry value?

  23. Lars says:

    Thanks!  This fixed all the issues I was having… It was driving me CRAZY prior to this!!

  24. luig says:

    problem with Ntrig Applet. I get the error message from Ntrig Applet and it says no connection and device can not be found. I’ve tried to reinstall the driver, tried a systembackup but nothing works. Do you have any idea?

  25. juts got an xt and this is the second replacement one. i ma having rpoblems with the tablet buttons not working and now the pen release button has fallen out. anyone lese unimpressed?

  26. Mike says:

    After 6 mo of absolute uselessness from Dell, and no reply from N-Trig on the XT issue, I sent back my tablet with Dell. It’s time their techs stopped mumbling about "doing a bench test"…

  27. Tracy says:

    With my Dell XT and Word 2003, when using the pen, it is constantly changing into an hourglass and gets in the way of my writing.  Does anyone else have this problem?  Any fixes?

  28. Demetri says:

    sorry this is off-topic, but anyone know a fix for the problem of the horizontal lines that appear when inking in PowerPoint slideshow mode? When you tap the screen you get a short horizontal line appearing, which makes it difficult to dot your i’s. ๐Ÿ™‚

    this is on a latitude xt running xp tablet edition, latest n-trig drivers and latest dell bios.

  29. Bud says:

    It’s been a few months and since I don’t use FF as my primary browser I’d kinda forgotten about this but having to use it today I thought I’d google around and see if I could find an answer – just wanted to say thank you for making it a 2-minute search… I don’t think I would have spent more than 5!

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