Windows 8 scaling issue may cause Surface Pro users some trouble, but a fix is coming

Surface with Windows 8 Pro scaling

Microsoft on Wednesday held up a Reddit AMA to answer users questions about Surface Pro. Alongside addressing many concerns around battery life, storage capacity and a possible trade-in program, one of the questions stood up and this one was regarding to a known issue in Windows 8 using an external monitor.

Reddit user Costco_Law_Degree was concerned that Surface Pro has a “very high resolution” and it has to scale to 150% to make the desktop usable. Now because Windows 8 currently does not allow to run different scaling sizes using external monitors, this could cause some issues for users wanting to use the display default 100% scale setting in an external monitor.

This is a valid point as many users are thinking on buying Surface with Windows 8 Pro as their primary machine connected to an external monitor.

In response Microsoft said “The Windows team is aggressively working on this feature to fix this for all high resolution Windows devices”, acknowledging that they are aware of the problem and they are working on a fix. However a release date for the fix is yet to be announced.

Also the company recommended some configuration to temporarily make this issue, for some, less painful, which are described below:

  1. I personally use 125% scaling.. and like that better for what I use Surface Pro for… see more things on the screen.. and the size of the text suits me just fine.
  2. Next I make sure my Second Screen is set to Extended mode.
  3. Then I adjust my Office apps using the built in zoom control (lower right of office apps) to set the desired text size. In Windows 8 the Desktop can be thrown on your second monitor and operate all your office apps… nice.
  4. For Outlook if I have on my second monitor I switch Outlook into mouse mode.
  5. Also in Outlook you can change your Zoom Setting in new message (compose window under zoom).. and it will also persist (which is nice).
  6. In IE desktop.. same thing.. the zoom persists on the desktop.. And I use IE 10 desktop in desktop mode.. and the touch version of IE10 on my Surface modern screen.
  7. You can also change the width of the cursor under Ease of Access.
  8. Also… not a must, but if you use a high resolution external monitor it also helps a lot.

Source Reddit

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].