We had some fun today at work.   Somebody tried to help somebody else out, then somebody asked somebody ELSE to try and undo to help out… then it all went wrong.

*I* was the somebody else and the problem (Pretty simple NOW that I’ve got it figured out) was they needed to have the Audio for their headset temporarily disabled to allow a different device to default for output (long story, different blog post)

So my friend who tried to help out (NAMES BLOCKED OUT TO PROTECT MY EMPLOYEE REVIEW) went down to the PC in question, and entered the Sound Control panel in Windows 8.1 and marked the device as Disabled.

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So a few weeks later, poor hapless little Sean walks over to enable the Device only to see this.

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…it’s not there to disable.   So in the meantime I have gone to Device Manager (Yes, yes… you in the back.  I COMPLETELY overlooked the option in the picture above that said “Show Disabled Devices”, but if I HAD you wouldn’t get to read this nifty Blog post would you?

Now where was I… OH YES! The Device Manager.   I gone it and “Found” the trouble making device by clicking on “View, Show Hidden Devices” under Device Manager.  

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“Why I know what I’ll do!  I’ll just UNINSTALL the suspect device, unplug the USB cable, plug it back in and BOB’S YOUR UNCLE, DONE!”

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But guess what (the reason you’re reading this) it wouldn’t redetect.    This of course released a torrent of magic words.

Turns out if I dug a little further there was a Parent entry under the “Sound, video and game controllers” entry marked as “Jabra Pro 9470”.  I uninstalled THAT, unplugged and replugged in the USB cable (and somehow maybe sacrificed a few helpless CD’s to the Demo gods) and then suddenly.

*DING*

…all fixed!

Of course this was to fix what *I* broke.   The actual answer would have been to “Show Disabled Devices” under the Sound Control panel and simply click on “Enable”.

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I have only word thing to say about THAT.

*DOH!*

Last May I went to TechEd and won a really cool prize just by attending a presentation (and participating in a raffle in Twitter) from the @OfficeGarage “Office 365” booth.

I love this device.   It’s small and light, runs full Windows 8.1 and has an Atom processor, meaning I can run normal apps within my Enterprise.

I had been considering what it would take to make this a “Normal PC” short of running Hyper-V.

Challenge one, connect up a keyboard and mouse.

There is a MicroUSB connector on the side which is used for charging the Device.   If you grab an OTG adapter (which converts this to a female USB device) you can attach a standard USB hub which gives you access to standard external USB keyboards, mice, hubs and goodies.

‘Woohoo!’ I would have shouted out if not for the fact that the device has a Battery…. which has SOME type of limited lifetime.   Certainly not twelve (12) hours if I were to be running Excel spreadsheets, doing research on the Internet (ok fine, playing “Bejeweled Blitz”, you caught me) and going through the usual pile of email in the Inbox and delet…. READING it.

This means the device would require power.  

Ah, but it DID have a Bluetooth connection.    I happened to have in my pile of goodies from the Microsoft Store a Microsoft Wedge Bluetooth Keyboard which offers up a cover which doubles as a stand for devices.   I also owned a Microsoft Sculpt Mouse which is Bluetooth Capable as well.

Smiling to myself ‘I have a solution!’

….or so I thought until my 24” monitor was staring back at me.   ‘What about me?’ It seemed to say.

I thought.  ‘Wireless video, if only I had wireless video….’

Interestingly enough, the Dell Venue 8 supports Miracast.    Off to the Microsoft Store… online and purchase myself a NetGear Push2TV adapter.

Now some things to note about hooking up a Miracast with an HDMI connection.

Be aware that a cheap cable that might be working with JUST video on your TV might produce effects such as

  • Snow
  • Blinking
  • Sound Dropping

This is not the fault of your Miracast or your Intel Widi adapter.  It’s the fault of the HDMI cable you thought were “oh So Smart” and bought at the local “Buck A Roo”, “CheapOHeaven” or found buried in the box of cat litter as a treasure.

Easy answer to that, BUY A NEW CABLE!

When you get your NetGear Push2TV, Follow the SUPPLIED SHEET AND INSTRUCTIONS and DOWNLOAD and INSTALL THE FIRMWARE UPDATE.

I have done this in ALL CAPS so nobody ELSE did the dumb stupid thing I did like say…. oh… I don’t know… IGNORING THE RTFM?

Once updated, the Push2TV gave me Miracast…. which has now given me a connection to my now happier 24” monitor.

…which means my Dell Venue 8 Pro is now a “real PC”

Now my next task…. see if I can find a powered USB hub to connect to my Dell Venue 8 Pro via Bluetooth. 

A chance to meet up and learn new technology from Industry Experts coming to four locations in West Canada.

Four dates, Four locations

    City Date Location Register
    Saskatoon, SK Sept 22, 2014 Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon
    Vancouver, BC  Sept 24, 2014 Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Vancouver
    Calgary, AB Sept 26, 2014 Courtyard Marriott Airport Calgary
    Edmonton, AB Sept 29, 2014 Marriott River Cree Resort Edmonton

    The Cost? Zero, Nada, Nothing.  Just a day off and a time to fill your brain to capacity.

    For further details and registration go over to www.mvpdays.com !