Aero Glass and Tablets

I got my first peek at a Tablet running Aero Glass yesterday. Wow! Considering that it's currently all visual effect and not really worth anything other than eye candy, it was hardly worth the effort/expense involved to make this particular Tablet run Glass, but then, that's a practical issue and Vista is destined to get people to buy new machines with Vista preloaded, Glass turned on, etc. Existing mobile PCs in general won't be able to run Glass. Period. End of story.

For the majority of folks who are running productivity software, surfing the web, sending email, chatting on IM, it won't make a darn bit of difference to your experience with Vista whether you have Glass or not. Go on ahead and load Vista on your Transmeta or P3-ULV CPU machines. I dare you to run Vista on your 256MB or 512MB maximum portables. Just don't think that you'll be happy about it.

In my opinion, the same value decisions we Hardware Junkies use to determine parts for our desktop systems are still valid for determining specs on our portable systems.

  • get the most RAM you can put into the system; most Tablets today can support 1.5GB or more
  • get a fast HD; you'll probably have to resort to a 3rd party to get 7200rpm drives, but it's worth it and it won't kill your battery life
  • buy a video solution one or maybe two generations behind the bleeding edge; you're not going to be running Quake4 on your mobile system, so c'mon get real. That's what your SFF (Small Form Factor) box is for anyway.
  • get the highest resolution, with the most screen real estate you can comfortably carry; if this happens to be a 10.3", 12.1" or 15.4" make it so. You won't be sorry for getting a larger screen - your eyes will thank you while your arm/shoulder will hate you. Maybe Josh's solution will appeal to you.
  • buy a spare battery or two and keep them charged because the day we'll have affordable all-day batteries will be the one where there is oinking coming from above and an Arctic chill coming from below

No, I won't tell you which Tablet was running Glass. Next question please...

Comments (9)
  1. Jonesy says:

    I run Aero Glass on my ASUS Z70va and it runs perfectly and very fast.

  2. Colin Walker says:

    I’ll tell you which Tablet I’m running glass on – an Acer C111TCi with boring old Intel Integrated graphics. How? Editing the registry.

  3. MSDN Archive says:

    Dear readers, please note that Jonesy’s notebook (not a Tablet) runs an ATI x700 graphics solution. Nice!

    Colin: how is your perf on ‘boring old Intel Integrated graphics’?

  4. Shahn Hogan says:


    So no currently released Tablet PCs will run Aero Glass? I’m trying to decide what Tablet to buy right now and I definately want the new Aero Glass, especially if I’m going to be spending $2,000 on a new system. Thanks

  5. Colin Walker says:

    The actual Aero performance was pretty good – bit of a big issue though: taps would not register within the UI. I could click the start button or the window buttons but anything "within" a window wouldn’t register. Is this because it’s not yet ready in 5219?

  6. MSDN Archive says:

    Shanh: I did not say that "no currently released Tablet PCs will run Aero Glass", what I did say was that in general, the vast majority of Tablet PCs will not. This is simply affirmation that Vista’s release will drive many people to replace, rather than upgrade, their systems.

    Colin: I do not have any experience with the reghack you used to enable Glass on your Acer. It could be that your inability to tap is a side-effect of the hack, because tapping was just fine on the Tablet I saw Tuesday.

  7. Colin Walker says:

    OK, thanks for letting me know. I bugged it anyway and got a response saying it was being investigated. Fingers crossed.

  8. Joe Levi says:

    I have a Fujitsu Lifebook T3010 with 768MB RAM, using Intel Extreme 2 graphics.

    Is my MSDN beta 5219 "tablet pc capable" and will my tablet run it (even without glass)?

    – Joe Levi

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