Saturday, March 17, 2007

How to install Windows Vista on ASUS R2H

As requested, I tried to put together my experience with installing Windows Vista on ASUS R2H. I will not cover the actual Vista installation, as it's pretty much straight forward, I will concentrate on steps to take before and after installation - please feel free to ask any question if I miss anything.


Since the official Asus Windows Vista upgrade DVD has yet to be released, the best option would be to keep Windows XP working and install Vista on it's own separate partition. More than that, I usually create a separate partition for personal documents and files, to store away from the OS partitions. I would recommend keeping the Asus recovery partition for now, just in case you will need to restore XP Tablet.

You can use any partition manager of your choice, but I would warmly recommend Acronis Disk Director Suite 10 (49.99$ download install) - I previously had pretty bad experiences with PartitionMagic, and I would like to underline how important it is to use a reliable partition editor.

Here is my partition table:

Recovery partition (original, hidden, FAT32) - 3.90 GB
Windows XP (C:, NTFS) - 9 GB
Windows Vista (D:, NTFS) - 15 GB
Personal (E:, NTFS) - 27.98 GB


As with previous RC releases and with this final release as well, I have used the .iso distribution to install, mainly because I wasn't going to keep them and because I don't have a USB DVD drive. For a hdd installation, you can extract its contents using say WinRAR (great archiving utility, shareware) or you can mount the .iso archive in Virtual Clone Drive (free) - with the first option you need additional space, once extracted go into the newly created folder and run setup.exe, as with the second option, just double-click the .iso to mount the image and it will auto-start the installer.

Since this is an installation from hdd, the Vista Upgrade option will not be available, and I wouldn't recommend it anyway. Just follow the on-screen instructions and install Vista on its dedicated partition.

If necessary to make the note, I chose to install the Business edition, to see exactly what it offers, since I understand this is the version you get from the Asus upgrade program.

If I remember correctly it will require a reboot and when finished you will have two options at boot, one for Windows XP (previous Windows version) and one for Windows Vista (default boot option from now on) - you can use the D-pad up/down buttons to choose the Windows version you want to boot and D-pad center button to run it.

Post installation steps

When you runVista for the fist time you will notice the pen is not calibrated, if you have problems logging in, use the joystick and mouse buttons to type the password (the joystick is quite slow with default drivers). I should make the note that I didn't need an external keyboard throughout the installation process, mainly because most of the setup ran in XP and later on I could use the pen. You probably need a keyboard if you perform the installation from a USB DVD drive.

Once logged on, I would recommend calibrating the pen: click the Orb (new Start button) > Control Panel > Mobile PC > Tablet PC settings > Calibrate the screen.

If you find Vista slow, wait until it loads and the HDD led stops flashing, and in my case I chose to use the standard Windows theme, but obviously this is a personal choice (Control Panel > Appearance and Personalization > Personalization > Change the theme).

If you are like me and you want to keep your personal files away from the system files, here is a tutorial on how to do just that - the sooner you do this the better. I've done this with My Documents and Links for XP for years, and it's a very easy way to keep your files no matter hour many times you decide to re-install Windows.

Installing Vista drivers & utilities

Download from one of the following locations ( Global - USA - Europe - China ) and install.

Download from one of the folllwing locations (Global - USA - Europe - China ) and install.

o Audio
Although Vista detected and installed a driver for the sound chip, I couldn't get any sound. Installing the Asus driver ( brought the bells back into the game.

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

o Camera
Download the appropriate driver: Bison ( or D-Max ( and install. My model has a Bison camera - if not sure open Computer Management and double check in the Imaging devices section.

Alternate download locations - Bison: Global - USA - Europe - China
Alternate download locations - DMax: Global - USA - Europe - China

Bison only: If the above driver doesn't work for you, see this post for alternate driver + registry fix.

o Card reader
Download & install driver from Asus website (

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

o INTEL Inf Update
Download from either Asus or Intel website ( - follow the installation steps as per previous post for XP, the only difference for the zip distribution is to extract first and then run "setup.exe -A"

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

o INTEL Graphics Driver
Download from Asus website ( and install.

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

o Fingerprint driver and utility
Download ( and install by running SetupIAM.exe. This will install the Asus Security Protect Manager as you know it and the fingerprint reader driver. Restat when prompted and when Vista is back on, logon and register your fingerprints.

I had a bit of trouble with this, but hopefully it won't happen to you - as I was registering my fingerprints , Vista locked-up and I had to restart. When Vista came back the touch screen wasn't working and there was no on-screen keyboard either. Now is a good time to have a USB keyboard around, or logon using Remote Desktop from another computer, change to a blank password and then use the joystick to click your user icon to logon ;-) Open Computer Management and check if the Human Interface Device has a yellow question mark, relict, right-click and choose Uninstall. Then push the "Scan for Hardware changes" button in the toolbar to re-install the HID drivers, and now the touch-screen should be working again. Then I could register my fingerprints with no problems and it worked just fine since.

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

o Joystick
Works out of the box, although it is very slow - download & install the new driver from Asus website (

Alternate download locations: Global - USA - Europe - China

Download driver (Global - USA - Europe - China) and install.

o Wireless
Asus recommends to install the wireless console application first ( and then install the driver ( The console is the application that sits in the tray area and shows the bouncy icons when you push the wireless control button - if you don't use this feature you can stop it using Autoruns.

Alternate download locations:
Wireless Console: Global - USA - Europe - China
Wireless Driver: Global - USA - Europe - China


  1. Dan Dar3: Thanks a lot for your affirmative reply to make a tutorial for all the people who certainly will need it. I'll visit your blog to follow the evolution of this topic. Keep your excelent work. Regards.

  2. Hello, could you try a readyboost sd card on the r2h ?


  3. Hi amaury,

    I already did - see this post

    It would be great if you can find a SD card that work with the default "quick removal" mode - somehow, I believe the issue may not be the card itself, but how well it works with particular card readers.

    As for thoughts, I have to numbers to prove this, but somehow I feel that the you don't hear HDD reading as much and even the unit seems a little less hotter than usual.

  4. unoffical compatibility list :

  5. Thanks amaury, as I said before, the SD card is just one of the components, then you have the card reader, the driver, the USB drivers etc.

    Anyway, choosing a good card is a good start, and the you can look for better drivers or use the workaround from my post.

  6. Hi!

    Can anybody mirror a local copy for these FTP drivers? It's impossible to establish connection with the FTP server. Especially the audio and WiFi ones...

    Thanks in advance!

  7. Hi agentejohnson,

    See the alternate download locations for the audio driver in the post(taken from the Asus download webpage). I will put the ones for the wireless console + driver, as soon as I can access the Asus website again - it is painfully slow and for some reason the Vista entry in the OS drop-down dissapeared?!

    If you can't download them from there, we'll get you sorted somehow.

  8. I've just added the alternate locations for the wireless console + driver in the post. I believe it's the same archive on different server close to those regions, so you can try first the one for your region, and if it doesn't work well, try any of the others as well.

    Let me know if you have a problem with those and I'll try to upload them somewhere.

  9. Thanks a lot. I have my R2H ready... the only thing i'm missing is the camera. It doesn't show up as an exclamation mark in the device manager but it doesn't get listed on the file explorer

  10. Hi agentejohnson,

    Now that you mentioned it, I tried it last night and it crashed MSN Messenger.

    I used to be able to capture images through Paint in the past (File > From Scanner Or Camera), but the menu is disabled.

    I assume the reason for that is the same why it's not listed in My Computer as well.

    I tried a driver for Bison webcams from MSI with no luck - I think we should contact Asus Tech Support with a query on this matter.

  11. Hello,
    I've a problem with the installation of the WLAN on the R2H. If I try to install the WLAN console, the system says that I've to install the ATK0100 driver first. I think I've done it, but iot doesn't work. What have I done wrong?
    Thank you,

  12. Hi Jan,

    see the two new entries I just added, ATK Hotkey UTILITY and ATKDrv UTILITY - maybe uninstall first the previous ATK driver & utility.

  13. Thank you, everything works fine now.

  14. Glad to hear everything is working fine, Jan.

  15. Still have one problem: the GPS doesn't work. Com1-port is free, but there is no signal.
    I installed MS AutoRoute. Do I need a separate driver for the GPS-antenna?

  16. Hi JC,

    Have you tried to enable the device with GPS_Switch.exe, as in XP?

  17. Thank you. It works OK!!

  18. Hi JC,

    Glad to see it works, thanks for confirming.


  19. I've freshly installed Vista on the R2H, and after installing the ASUS drivers from ASUS' site, I was wondering if I can set permanently the resolution to 800x600 or 1024x600 with no panning/scrolling, because after I set it, and reboot the R2H, the resolution doesn't change, but the screen pans/scrolls when I log back in...any ideas? Thanx!

  20. Hi there,

    I just got the ASUS Settings to work on Vista, and I will write a new post on that soon. That should allow to change resolutions as you did in XP.

  21. Hi,

    See if this post solves you problem.

  22. reposting into the right blog...

    Dan Dar3: Thanx for the link regarding installation of the graphics drivers & ATK stuffs...I have already done it, but the problem still persists...(I'm on Vista Ultimate)...when I set the screen to either 800x600 or 1024x600, everything fits on the panning...and life is good...but if I reboot the R2H, then next time I login to the R2H, screen is set still to the last resolution (either 800x600 or 1024x600), but I need to pan/ everything won't fit into 1 screen anymore...any guidance appreciated! Thanx!

  23. reposting into the right blog...

    Dan Dar3: Thanx for the link regarding installation of the graphics drivers & ATK stuffs...I have already done it, but the problem still persists...(I'm on Vista Ultimate)...when I set the screen to either 800x600 or 1024x600, everything fits on the panning...and life is good...but if I reboot the R2H, then next time I login to the R2H, screen is set still to the last resolution (either 800x600 or 1024x600), but I need to pan/ everything won't fit into 1 screen anymore...any guidance appreciated! Thanx!

  24. Hi,

    I tested it on Vista Business, sorry I don't have Ultima to try it on.

    Make sure you install the driver and utility versions specified as in the post, don't rely on old versions as they didn't work for me.

    Are you changing the resolution from ASUS Settings utility or from Windows display properties?

    If nothing works, I would suggest contacting ASUS Support - create an account at if you don't have one already, and once logged in, see the Technical Inquiry link on the left.

    Good luck,

  25. Hello.
    Thanks for informations about Vista on R2H.
    I have Vista on my device, but now I try install OSX86. I have accidently removed my recovery partition (with XP) and my copy not work. Can someone send me a copy of this partition (fe. GHO)? I live in Poland, then if someone from my country read this post and have R2H Asus, please for help. (kbrelins at o2 pl)

  26. Hi kreblins,

    Not sure if I kept the partition, I'll check it out tonight and I'll let you know.


  27. Hi kbrelins,

    I still have the partition, RECOVERY, 3.91 GB, FAT32. I'll contact you on email.


  28. ... just if someone searches for help: I've got some problems with ASUS' official Vista version of the wireless console 2 utility. The wifi adapter kept being disabled although the led lights up. An uninstall of the console application did the trick for me ;-)

  29. Hi Oxident,

    Thanks for sharing your finding with us!


  30. Hi a question : how make gps_switch auto-start with windows boot??

  31. Hey Tito,

    Probably the easiest way is to create a shortcut in Start > Startup folder.

    It will start every time you login, the thing is that I don't think the utily allows for parameters so it will always popup and you'll have to tick the box.

    See this thread for details:

  32. I have a free tool that you can use to restore the state of the GPS receiver on the R2H:

  33. Hi Bogdan,

    That should be very handy for someone using GPS regularly - I'll write a new post about it.


  34. This post is Very Useful information... awesome description and easy steps... thanks for sharing!!!
    More info:- Asus Technical Support