Windows 8.1 creates mouse-control problems for gamers

Microsoft has acknowledged the issues, but it hasn't come up with a fix yet

Gamers who upgraded their PCs to Windows 8.1 are enduring mouse-control problems that affect their ability to play, a problem Microsoft acknowledged this week.

Windows 8.1 causes a subpar mouse performance for video games under certain circumstances and problem reports have been pouring into Microsoft's tech support site, where affected users are actively discussing the issues on multiple threads.

On Wednesday, a Microsoft representative expressed gratitude for the information gamers have provided, which will be useful for troubleshooting, but admitted that the company hasn't yet found a solution.

"First off, we want to thank our gaming community for the detailed feedback many of you have provided on these issues. While we don't have a date yet for the release of a fix, we are working to get these issues resolved as quickly as possible," wrote a Microsoft forum moderator identified as Naman R.

The Microsoft official added that the mouse problems people are experiencing are varied and manifest themselves in different ways depending on the game being played, mouse input methods and other elements. Microsoft has categorized them as "mouse lag" issues.

Problems include mouse jitters, which causes the cursor to jump forward and back; scale disparity, where the distance the cursor moves on the screen doesn't match the distance the mouse moves; and inadequate mouse polling frequency, which affects speed and reaction time.

"For these situations, check the game settings. If the game supports raw input from the mouse, enabling it may solve the issue," the official wrote.

In his post, he also includes some work-arounds for other problems, such as when a mouse can't reach all areas of a game window.

"When we have more information from our investigations, we will update this post. Thank you very much for your patience," he wrote.

A Microsoft spokesman said via email the company has no additional comments about these issues beyond what it has said on the support forums.

Windows 8.1 became available on the Windows Store on Oct. 17, and it has run into several problems that have made it difficult or impossible at times for some users to download and install it on their PCs and tablets.

For example, an outdated firmware issue left some Surface RT tablets unable to boot up after users installed the OS update. That took several days to fix and during that period Microsoft pulled the update from the Windows Store.

In addition, as IDG News Service first reported this week, the presence of some outdated drivers and incompatible software has made it impossible for other users to complete the Windows 8.1 installation, another issue Microsoft is looking into that started affecting users on the day of the OS' launch.

Moreover, another group of users who own older PCs that are able to run Windows 8 can't install 8.1 because the update has additional hardware requirements, as reported by PC World.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

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Tags peripheralsWindows 8Microsoftgaming peripheralsWindowsgamesInput devicessoftwareoperating systems

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Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
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