Getting files between your Windows tab and your PC

Windows 10 tablet is a confusing beast. It’s basically a PC, it acts like a PC, it runs PC programs just fine. But it’s also a tablet; no keyboard, no mouse, and no standard USB port, only a micro-USB port that’s used in most smartphones.

Transferring files between a PC and a regular tablet is as easy as using a data cable, which is also the cable used to charge the tablet. It’s available everywhere. That kind of cable is also used to charge a Windows tablet, but then you connect that to a PC and-

Well, it’s charging. But nothing else is happening.

Because a Windows 10 tablet treat itself like a PC, connecting it to another PC is like… trying to connect two PCs together with a USB cable, which is apparently a concept so alien, nobody at Microsoft has figured it out yet. Although your tablet is still charging because it detects a power source from the other end of the cable, neither device can detect the existence of each other. So how are we supposed to transfer files between a Windows tablet and a PC?

1. Use a flashdisk

Copy your files to a USB flashdisk. Use a USB hub that can plug into a micro port on the tablet. Plug the flashdisk in. Easiest solution, except you’ll need a flashdisk. And a USB hub that can connect to a micro port. And you’re basically copying twice.

2. Wi-Fi Direct

This is the method I use. With Wi-Fi Direct, both your PC and your tablet can send files directly to each other if they’re connected to the same Wi-Fi network. It’s easy to do this because a Windows tablet can make a Mobile Hotspot. Your PC can then connect to that hotspot via Wi-Fi. Or you can just use any other Wi-Fi network, though be aware that open public networks are, eh, open and public.

Wi-Fi Direct can’t be done using just the current Windows builds. You’ll need some external program to be able to transfer files between the two. I found Feem, which is free and can do the job fine enough. Install the program on both your PC and your tablet, using the “PC” version for both (or use the Windows Market to install it) .

If both device are connected to the same Wi-Fi network and both are opening Feem, they should now detect each other in the program. And then just “upload”  the file you need to have transferred, and the other device should be able to “download” them from Feem.

Fair warning: The default settings for Feem (download location, auto-opening files) is pretty annoying, so check them before starting to “upload”.

3. Upload and download with the internet

Not my preferred method, especially with large files or limited internet quotas. But lots of devices, and Windows especially, has a built-in ability to “Sync” files between devices. Or they can automatically back up some files to the clouds and download it on different devices. This might be easier for some people.

If you don’t have that done automatically, you can just manually upload your files to something like Dropbox or Google Drive and then download it elsewhere.

 

And that’s all the method I know of. And that’s a lot more technobabbling than I was hoping for. Do comment if there’s anything you’re confused about. Or if there’s another easier method to get around this. Or if my writing is garbage and you have no idea what I’ve been saying.

Good luck handling that beast called a Windows tablet.

 

 

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