hacking the Microsoft Natural Keyboard 4000

Its not a secret that I have "burning wrist hurt disease". My doctor likes to refer to it as carpel tunnel syndrome.

Lately my wrists have been killing me. At work, I have a dell standard style type of keyboard, and a standard dell mouse with a scroll wheel. My index finger on my right hand is shot from the scrolling motion, and my hands are jacked from typing. I needed some thing better. Enter the Microsoft Natural Keyboard 4000.

After I did a little research I decided that the Microsoft Natural Keyboard 4000 was for me. The interesting thing about the keyboard is that it has a "zoom slider". The zoom slider is a cool idea but executed poorly. Who wants a "zoom" slider to change the font size of the screen?

It would be so much better if it was a slider for scrolling. I hit the web and found out there was a hack to do just this over at pain in the tech. In a few steps I was able to change the zoom slider into a scroll slider.

I was happy, but I found that a lot of applications still zoomed in on the text instead of scrolling, like outlook. I decided to hack the commands a bit more, and remove the zoom functionality all together, and replace it with scrolling.

To make things better, Here is a copy of the commands.xml file that I am running, so you can share in my joy also.

To change the zoom into a scroll, using my patched commands.xml file:

  1. Navigate to the your Intelitype Pro directory, mine is "C:Program FilesMicrosoft IntelliType Pro"
  2. Rename the existing commands.xml to commands.xml_OLD
  3. Place the new commands.xml into that directory
  4. Reboot the computer

With the scroll hack in place, I can scroll a window without having to take my hands off the keyboard. Thanks Miscrosoft for making a sweet keyboard, but no thanks for not making it a scroll slider in the first place. A zoom slider is just a stupid idea.