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SURFACE RT and MODEM : this app can't run on your system


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pwouters's Avatar
pwouters pwouters is offline
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21-Feb-2013, 12:46 PM #1
SURFACE RT and MODEM : this app can't run on your system
I have a brand new (meaning really brand new - nothing installed yet - only went through the initial setup) windows surface rt and have attached my modem to the USB port

I got a message : 'this app can't run on your PC'

anyone a solution ?

thanks - paul
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21-Feb-2013, 02:15 PM #2
Does the modem manufacturer have drivers for Windows 8 RT? RT is the tablet operating system and is not the same thing as the version Windows 8 included with desktop and laptop computers.
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21-Feb-2013, 03:23 PM #3
All I can find on the "net" is that the RT uses a WiFi connection. I can not find anything about using a CAT 5 connection or one through a USB cable.
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21-Feb-2013, 08:18 PM #4
The Windows Surface RT tablet runs the Windows 8 RT operating system and has a USB port. I'm not sure what kind of devices work with the USB port, but I would guess some storage devices might. I would think it is unlikely that something like a broadband or wireless broadband modem would work with this device because it is running a tablet operating system.

The important distinction here is that Windows 8 RT is different from Windows 8 (for desktops and laptops). The interfaces are similar, and the name is similar, but the operating system itself is different. When you contact your Internet provider to discuss driver availability, be sure to tell them you're trying to use the modem on a Windows 8 RT Surface tablet.
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22-Feb-2013, 07:43 AM #5
thanks rearden - if the name is the same and the interface is the same but it is something completely different, then maybe somebody is selling empty air around here

a tablet with only wifi (and no possibility for modem) is pretty useless around the world (except in expensive US-coffee and donut franchises) provided one consumes something there and gets the access code

I have also googled some more and I understand it was a money issue (built in modem cost money and i would not make commercial sense to built drivers in 'for free') so the rest of the world is left out in the cold for now with a 'cheap' (?) but useless gadget : wanna read emails, know the news, chat .... and no wifi around ... ???

I hope to still find a solution or the thing goes SCRAP - what a failure that would be - anybody else a way around this ? thanks for your efforts to help me - by the way - and apology for my cynicism - it is a bit mind boggling how critics could be cheerful about a product that could not connect properly to the internet around the globe

anybody help ? - greets and thanks
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22-Feb-2013, 09:49 AM #6
All tablets come in WiFi only versions. The iPad, Nexus, Kindle Fire all come in WiFi only models. Most people have wireless networks in their homes that they use them with.

If you want a model with a built-in wireless broadband model, it will be much more costly (usually around +$100) and require a data plan that costs about $20 a month. I'm not sure if the Microsoft Surface comes in a model that includes a modem, but if it does, you could exchange it for that model. Otherwise, you'll need to purchase a different tablet that includes a wireless modem that works with your preferred carrier (different around the world).
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22-Feb-2013, 11:09 AM #7
True: the other tablets mostly (not 'all') also have no modem built in ... simply because there is no need for it ... The android platform based tablets allow external modems to be attached to their USB ports ...

The new SURFACE PRO apparently allows external modems to be attached... so far for the argument that tablets would not need modem connectivity ...

External modems cost 20 USD or so (yes my friends ... that is the REAL cost of a modem these days - profit included ... and not 100 USD) ... One modem in your pocket can make every PC you meet float on the internet anywhere and anytime ... No need to equip every hardware with such a thing built in ... The reason for this part of the argumentation really escapes me - to be honest ...

By the way : WINDOWS itself calls the tablet a 'PC' - maybe I should take them to court then ... any lawyers in the audience ?

Who wants to use a tablet at home (where you have a real PC) and not 'on the fly in the city'. For me the tablet is essential to be used on the road. Reading emails, news, video calls ... the question then is: do I have the connection or not : NO is the answer (except at home or the coffee shop).

I was not looking for the built in modem ... I was expecting to attach my external modem to the available USB ...

But as always, there should be a way to solve this ... anyone a suggestion ? thanks ... it should be possible ...
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22-Feb-2013, 12:38 PM #8
I didn't know you could attach a USB wireless broadband modem to an Android tablet. I know the Kindle Fire and Samsung Nexus do not even have USB ports. Maybe some of the premium Motorola and Samsung models do. But I'm surprised to hear the modem manufacturers make drivers for the modems for Android. That's why people who want mobile connectivity choose the models with that functionality built-in. Or they use mobile hotspots. That would be a more universal option.

I use my cell phone for the things you mention like e-mail, news, videos, video calls, etc. If I want internet connectivity on the tablet while I'm away from home, I can tether it to my cell phone.

I believe the Microsoft Surface Pro runs the full desktop version of Windows 8. It's essentially a full fledged computer in tablet form similar to the ones that existed years ago running a tablet version of Wnidows XP.
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22-Feb-2013, 01:27 PM #9
Quote:
I believe the Microsoft Surface Pro runs the full desktop version of Windows 8.
Yes.

Another option that some people find convenient is to use a "mobile hotspot" or other router that is compatible with the USB modem. That allows any (usually up to five at a time) Wi-Fi capable devices to have internet access. The downside is that, I think, those things need a source of electricity and are another thing to carry around.
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22-Feb-2013, 06:55 PM #10
Yes. I also discovered the possibility of a MiFi (mobile hotspot) - of which to be honest I didn't even know they existed ... bit cumbersome though ...

Thanks for your enthusiastic input so far.

Still looking for the modem solution though ... connectivity through WIFI is no connectivity at all ... unless you hop through the city from coffee shop to donut place. The device is not cheap ... not building in a modem is one thing .... not allowing external modems to be attached is an expensive absurdity ...

Anyone solution for the MODEM question ?
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22-Feb-2013, 10:39 PM #11
What kind of Modem do you have now?

You just need to get yourself a WiFi Router and you are in business.
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22-Feb-2013, 11:51 PM #12
Call your provider and ask them for Windows 8 RT drivers for your modem.
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23-Feb-2013, 03:59 AM #13
the issue is that WINDOWS could just have allowed for the modems to be attached - would have been SIMPLE - but they did choose NOT too - the USA computer industry apparently has decided to still pump billions of dollars in WIFI (stone age technology) and sells 20 USD modems for 100 USD to keep that market niche small

then when everyone has WIFI, they will upgrade to broadband - for your info: the rest of the world IS already broadband and modems here (Asia) cost 20-25 USD (retail price)

anyway, the practical way out - so I did learn this morning in the techno shopping mall - is a MIFI or modem/wife router - I do connect via the modem and then the modem is some kind of hot spot to which up to 5 WIFI applications can be attached - cost : 25 -35 USD for 3G / 4G(price of a simple modem - taiwan gear / chinese somewhat cheaper) - downside: battery life max 4 hours

as the providers are concerned - here they only give access to the internet - period - no hardware / software service or whatever - we do not have the market disturbing packaging / bundling / lock ups and lock outs that characterize US market - everybody delivers his thing at competitive price and that's it

so still looking for a way to attach my modem directly to the machine - anybody a suggestion ? - thanks rearden for following this talk
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23-Feb-2013, 09:32 AM #14
The issue here is that its Windows RT and not Windows 8. Windows RT runs with a different kernel and runs on different hard ware. It runs on the same ARM based processors found in cell phones and other small tablets. It's not x86 compatible so your normal Windows drivers and desktop programs will not run on it. Your modems software and drivers are not compatible with Windows RT. Windows RT looks like Windows 8 but its not Windows 8. As mentioned the Surface Pro runs Windows 8 and will run all your regular Windows programs and hardware. I dare say quit a few people bought an RT and didn't realize that its not x86 compatible.
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23-Feb-2013, 11:52 AM #15
pwouters,

You did NOT answer my question above. There are several type of modems and it would help if we knew what you are using.
Is it a "dial up" phone modem? what make and model?

Is it a "DSL" phone modem? What is the make and model?

Is it a "Cable" modem used with a TV provider? What is make and model?
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