How Can I Disable Tablet Mode in Windows 10?


My computer constantly prompts me to switch to Tablet Mode. I don’t want to use that, however, because I’m on a desktop and have a keyboard. Can I disable tablet mode entirely in Win10?

You would think that there was a switch or setting in Microsoft Windows 10 that let you permanently disable tablet mode but, perhaps surprisingly, there isn’t one. You can stop the system suggesting you switch, but you can’t get rid of the feature entirely. I guess the Microsoft engineers can’t imagine a scenario where you wouldn’t want a full-screen Start menu tile layout and on-screen keyboard, even if you have a darn physical keyboard 3? away from the screen.

Before we were to toss out the proverbial baby with the bathwater, it might be worth asking if there’s a specific thing you do that causes the system to believe you want to switch to tablet mode, however. The classic way is to actually click on the Tablet “Quick Action†on the right side of your Win10 desktop, but we’ll turn that off to take the temptation away.

To start, let’s just have a look how Tablet Mode in Win10 kinda just looks a lot like the original, radical Windows 10 full-screen-for-everything interface. To start, our reference point, Desktop.

Notice the TaskBar along the bottom, as you’d expect, and nothing special on the right side. Click or tap on the Notifications “talk balloonâ€on the lower right corner, however, and a panel opens up with not just any notifications, but also those Quick Actions:

Top left, “Tablet mode“. Tap or click on that to switch to tablet mode – which you’ve done inadvertently, perhaps: this is how you can manually switch back and forth – and the screen changes to hide most everything:

Okay, no tablet mode. No worries. Let’s get rid of just about all of the features and options. Though you can’t completely exorcise tablet mode from Windows 10 we can certainly make it a lot harder to stumble across.

Start by right clicking on the Tablet Mode quick action tile on the lower right. You’ll see this:

Choose “Go to Settings†and you’ll be able to configure tablet mode as you desire:

Well, sort of. The top choice you’ll want to change from “Use the appropriate mode for my hardware†(which seems benign) to “Use desktop mode“. The second option is a bit more interesting:

The choice you want is a variation on the military dictum of “don’t ask, don’t tellâ€, so choose “Don’t ask me and don’t switch“. The other two settings you should have as shown above.

That’s about as much as you can do, but let’s take one more step: let’s get rid of the “Tablet†quick access tile. To do that, go into the Windows 10 Start / Cortana search box and enter “quick actionsâ€. It’ll show quite a few options:

What you want to select is “Choose your quick actions†which brings up yet another window, the key part of which is this display:

Go figure, it’s exactly like the quick start tiles that are actually in use. You can rearrange them as desired, but note that you can also add or remove quick actions. That’s what we want, click on the “Add or remove quick actions†link below all the tiles in the window.

A rather dull list of actions with on/off switches appears:

That’s it. Simply turn off “Tablet mode†and any others you’d like to disable while you’re at it. And if you look now, the quick actions grid will reflect the change:

And that’s as good as you get with tablet settings within Windows 10. Hope it’s helpful and that you feel more in control of your computer.

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