Windows 8 tablets are becoming more widely used, but the operating system – at least in modern mode – handles specific apps with ease. One way to solve this problem is to install Android on a tablet.
While installing Android on a desktop computer is quite simple (you might install Android x86 on your own partition or using BlueStacks, YouWave or the official Android emulator).
), there may be several problems when installing the popular Google operating system on a Windows tablet; namely, the tablet does not have a CD/DVD drive.
This means that things can get a little confusing, especially if you link this error to the consequence that Windows 8 Secure Boot System has for installing an additional operating system.
What tablet do you use?
While the process of installing Android on a Windows tablet – and I mean an Intel x86 device rather than an ARM processor (such as Microsoft Surface RT) – varies from device to device, the general approach is the same.
However, before you proceed, check your tablet’s steps online to make sure you’re not making errors that might delete your SSD or leave your computer unspeakable. An additional copy of Windows might be useful.
I made this setup on my Acer Iconia W700, a useful Windows 8 tablet that looks more like an ultrabook. This meant that it was a kind of backup advantage; recently, I replaced the original SSD devices with a larger model.
I had to return the old one if something was wrong.
Although I used the Acer Iconia W700, and the detailed steps are based on it, it can also be used on Samsung XE700T and Microsoft Surface devices (according to the helpful guide that Thatgrass provides on the XDA-Developers.com website).
Why do I need to install Android on a Windows tablet?
You can expect certain things from a tablet operating system. So it’s worth demanding them.
While there is a huge software library available on a Windows PC – undoubtedly a Windows 8 tablet and PC processor – there are some useful things to try on Android. If you don’t currently have an Android tablet, these things (such as improved keyboard interaction) can be reproduced by dual-starting the Windows tablet with Android. Again, it doesn’t cost anything, and thanks to the fast start of Windows 8, switching between the two operating systems is painless.
Keep in mind, however, that it’s limited to apps that support x86. There’s more of them, but don’t expect to be able to run all your apps in the Play Store.
What’s needed to install Android on a Windows 8 tablet
The preparations for this project are a little in-depth, especially if you’re not already familiar with Windows 8.
First, we get rid of the simple things. You will need a USB flash drive with at least 512 MB of memory to store installation media; the flash drive must be formatted in the FAT file system. Also, make sure you have a USB keyboard and USB hub – I would recommend a small, powerless hub, as initializing a powerful hub may take some time – this means that the keyboard won’t be connected by the time you press F12. So, a USB hub without power.
It would help if you also had software. Start by downloading Win 32 Disk Imager from Sourceforge – it is used to write an image to a USB drive.
After downloading, go to the Intel Open Source Technology Center and select the generic UEFI installer image for the android version you want to install. Be sure to unpack the file after the download is complete.
Prepare your USB drive.
After downloading Android, you’ll need to write to a USB drive. Insert your device into a tablet or USB hub and unpack the Win 32 Disk Imager.
Run the Win32DiskImager .exe and select to navigate to the expanded Android Installer Save add to your device.
Then make sure the correct drive letter is selected in the USB drive section device, and when you’re ready, press Write a message to start the installation.
After completion, Win 32 Disk Imager informs you that the data capture is complete – you are now ready to continue.
Set up your Windows 8 tablet for Android
You can’t just install a second operating system on a device designed for Windows 8 without changing system settings.
First, you need to make sure the safe boot is disabled. Open Settings> Change computer settings> Update and recovery> Recovery and select Restart now… From there, use the arrow keys to select Troubleshooting, then > settings and UEFI firmware settings open to bios.
Here you can find Security in the left menu and set management password… Once this has been added, open boot, Find Safe Startup option and install Disabled.
Once you’re done, pinch Force restart, then hold down windows buttons until the screen is turned on. So you can quickly return to the BIOS screen, where you need to check the UEFI mode selected.
Then turn off the tablet and connect the USB hub directly to the USB port (unlike any of the docking stations). Next, using the keyboard and USB drive connected to the hub, start the tablet by pressing F12… In the boot menu, use the arrow keys to select a USB device, and then follow the instructions to set up dual boot mode and distribute your device’s Android with the device’s volume controls.
Different versions of Android Setup have slightly different steps. For this option, I have selected:
Do you want to keep Windows and dual boot? Y
Do you want to resize the size of Windows to free up space? Y (This starts a recovery cycle when Windows 8 starts.)
Enter the new MiB size for Windows: type the default option.
Do you want to install the GummiBoot bootloader? Y
Enter boot menu timeout (0 = no menu) (min = 0, max = 60, enter = 5) 15
Once you have done this, the installation will continue. When you’re done, you should see a message:
“Installation complete. Press Enter to continue “
If everything goes according to plan, the next time you start your tablet, you’ll see a startup menu where you can choose between Android and Windows 8.
Run Android on a Windows 8 tablet
Of course, in my case, while I was preparing the settings for the tutorial, I found that things did not go as planned. Although the repair cycle took some time (and the Acer Iconia W700 doesn’t actually tell you how to perform a repair cycle), the computer ends up… Started on Windows 8.1. A few restarts later, and so far, there was no sign of the boot menu.
Uncomfortable, the only way to open Android at the moment is to display the boot menu at F12 startup, which in some cases can be complicated. I also found that Bluetooth doesn’t work on Windows, but as soon as I launched Android, I opened customization and switched to Bluetooth, after which restarting Windows allowed me to start Bluetooth.
If everything is installed and Android loads, it works pretty much as expected. Not all features are available because the x86 version is unofficial. So you need to install the gAPP app to get things like Google Play and Gmail. This is true for all unofficial android versions, and we’ll look at it in a later guide.
If you liked this guide, you might also be interested in installing Chrome OS on your computer or running Android on your netbook