Today’s touchscreen laptops have come a long way since their predecessors 30 years ago. You can now use gestures to zoom, scroll, quickly access certain apps, and countless other features.
Because of its greater utility, Microsoft has developed precision drivers, which further enhance the capabilities of touch panels. However, not all laptops have these drivers built-in, especially if they belong to previous generations.
Fortunately, if you have compatible touch panels, you can install Precision drivers manually. This article will explain all the necessary steps.
Step 1: Check the touch panel and download the drivers
There are two drivers that support Windows Precision drivers: Elan and Synaptics. Before installing the precision drivers, you need to verify which ones you have. To do this, you must:
- Right-click the Home icon at the bottom left of the screen.
- Select ‘Device Manager’.
- Expand the ‘Mice and other pointing devices’ section by clicking the arrow to the left of the icon.
- See if it says the ‘Elan’ or ‘Synaptics’ flagging device. If you have a Lenovo laptop, you may see ‘Lenovo Pointing Device’, which is manufactured by ‘Elan’.
- If it says “Elan pointing device”, it should download that
- If you see ‘Synaptics pointing device’, download this in your place.
- Remove or unpack the driver at any location.
Step 2: Install Windows Precision Drivers
The next step is to install the Precision controller software. Make sure you have a mouse nearby in case the installation goes wrong and completely disable the touch panel.
Then follow these steps:
- Navigate to your touch panel controller by following steps 1-3 in the previous section.
- Right-click on the touch panel driver.
- Select ‘Update Driver’ from the drop-down menu. A new window should appear.
- Click ‘Search my computer for driver software.’ You will need to manually locate the downloaded drivers.
- Select ‘Allow to choose from a list of available drivers on my computer’ in the next window.
- Select the ‘I have a disk’ button below the list of supported drivers.
- Click the ‘Browse’ button in the ‘Install from Disk’ window that appears.
- Navigate to the folder where you downloaded the driver software during the previous section.
- Click on the ‘Autorun’ file.
- Click ‘Open’.
- Select ‘OK’ when the other window appears.
- Wait a few minutes for the driver software to appear in the list.
- You will receive a notification that the hardware may not work after installing the software, but you should click ‘Yes’ anyway.
- Wait for the installation to finish.
- Once the installation is complete, click ‘Yes’ when prompted to reboot the system.
Step 3: Check if the drivers have been installed correctly
When you reboot the laptop, you need to verify that the Precision drivers are installed and working. To do this, you must:
- Click the Start menu icon in the lower left corner of the screen.
- Go to ‘Settings’ (gear icon) on the left.
- Select the ‘Devices’ menu.
- Go to the ‘Touchpad’ options on the left.
- You should see many more customization options and settings than usual in this menu. There should be a note ‘Your PC has a precision touch panel’ under the heading ‘Touch panel’ at the top of menu.
The touch panel does not work with precision controllers
If your touch panel does not work as it should after installing Precision drivers, your touch panel may not be compatible with this software. If this happens, you must perform a “Undo driver” action. To do this, you need:
- Locate your touch panel driver in the device manager (steps 1-3 in the first section).
- Right click on the driver.
- Select ‘Properties’ from the drop-down menu.
- Click the ‘Driver’ tab at the top.
- Select the ‘Backtrack driver’ option.
- This should return the driver to the previously installed version. Wait for the process to finish, then click ‘OK’ when prompted to restart your system.
Once the system reboots, the touch panel should work normally.
Unfortunately, if you have an earlier version of Windows, such as 8, 7, or earlier, these drivers will not work. They are designed to work with Windows 10 and this is the only compatible system.
Enjoy the best touch panel experience
If you manage to install the Precision Touchpad drivers, you will notice the improvements immediately. You will notice the greater smoothness and responsiveness, as well as some new features, such as sliding with several fingers, scrolling and others. Since precision touch panels are significantly better than their counterparts, there is no reason not to set them up on your laptop.
Did you install Microsoft Precision drivers on your laptop? If so, which of the new features of the precision touch panel do you like best? Let us know in the comments below.