Trying to use Windows on Samsung Dex

by birtanpublished on January 26, 2021

Anyone remember Samsung decks I would say it was a mostly failed experiment but kind of a cool concept it was a docking station that allowed you to use your Galaxy S H our no-date as almost a desktop computer kind of it used Samsung's own software and it actually worked pretty darn well but not good enough to actually replace anybody's computer and so it quickly faded from the spotlight well today we're gonna dust it off and give it a go almost three years after it came out believe it or not but we're not gonna sell for Samsung software oh no no no we're gonna do this right hey how's it going I'm

Josh from ninety one tech and today we're gonna try to run Windows 10 on this Galaxy s8 a phone from early 2017 what could possibly go wrong this video might get a little bit long so I will have timestamps in the description if you want to skip ahead and see what happens but otherwise let's just jump right into this now believe it or not Samsung is actually still supporting Dex on all of its newest to fling ships including the note 10 and I think there's even been a couple generations of Dex so that's kind of

Neat the s8 I bought a fair few months back now actually came with the Dex pad I didn't buy it separately but I did want to try to use Dex for something in a video because I thought it would be fun and so of course I figured yeah why not run Windows on Android that sounds like a fun time I was surprised to see this hadn't really been done before at least not done well we're gonna try to push this a lot further than I think anyone has at least with Dex Windows 10 on Android would be pretty darn cool if it works and unfortunately that's a pretty big if but let's start this off

By talking about Dex there's two types of Dex there's the Dex pad and the docking station I have the Dex pad and here's the box inside the box we have the Dex pad on the top and then underneath if I can never get this cover off we have the charging cables simple but all we need the Dex pad has two USB ports one HDMI port and one USB C port USB could I think be used for pretty much anything although typically I'd imagine you'd want to use it for a mouse and keyboard although you could always do that with Bluetooth as well HDMI is to hook it up to the monitor and USB C

Is for powering the whole thing now to clarify if I have this right you don't actually need this Dex pad or docking station to get this to work and USB C to HDMI cable or a USB C to USBC cable with a monitor that accepts USB C should get Dex working correct me if I'm wrong on that but regardless I don't think it's very practical because without your phone being charged at the same time your batteries probably gonna die pretty quick if you hook it up to a big screen but anyways upon plugging the Samsung Galaxy S H into the Dex pad we get Samsung's desktop OS it actually looks

Like a regular computer kind of a bit like Chrome OS mixed with Windows I would say you have the date and time and all your basic smartphone options on the bottom right corner and then you also have a desktop like you would a regular computer and of course you still have the app drawer which you can scroll through this is kind of cool if you wanted to put your phone on the big screen if you want to do basic internet browsing Samsung internet is the way to do it chrome will default to mobile version of all pages which is super annoying so

Samsung internet is definitely the way to go when it comes to practical use I'd say there's basically none for Dex shocker if you have a monitor you probably have a computer so why would you use your phone you could hook it up to a TV and so I guess there could be some limited use of that but I mean at the same time I feel like there's other ways to do that too most Smart TVs have web features built-in nowadays like Netflix but anyways that is a possibility and you can even hook it up to your laptop believe it or not with Dex for PC which is an app from Samsung

But doesn't that completely negate the entire point of having a laptop why would you want to use your phone on your laptop it doesn't make a whole lot of sense one interesting way to use Dex is on a Samsung Galaxy Tab you can basically just turn it into a PC kind of if you hook up a keyboard and mouse you can have it act like it would if it was connected to a monitor that's kind of neat and if you prop it up I could see there being a real use case for that if you really hate the touch interface that's something that I would consider doing if I was interested in buying a

Samsung tablet for the most part though when it comes to Dex there's no reason to use it over a Windows computer because it's not Windows and people need Windows now if you could run Windows with Dex that would be a whole different story so let's do that or at least let's try and we're gonna try Windows 10 will it work I don't know maybe we're gonna give it our best shot though now there's a couple ways we could go about this the first one is definitely more boring but also more practical and that's streaming your PC to the galaxy there are plenty

Of apps out there to let you do this personally I use parsec parsec is a app that's more geared towards gaming I would say which I don't have never really used it for gaming but that's what it I think it's supposed to be for regardless though it works great for me normally and there is an app on the Android Play Store so you can get parsec on your Android phone there isn't on the iOS store so if you're on iPhone you're out of luck regardless though I think that would work really well to get Windows 10 running on your phone it's not actually on your phone it's a

Different PC but it would definitely work the second and much more fun method would be to run Windows 10 natively on the galaxy but as far as I could find that is impossible and definitely not possible without rooting the phone accepts a kind of unconventional and annoying way to do it which is an emulator slash of virtual machine this is unfortunately I think as close as we'll be able to get but it might allow us to run Windows 10 and that would be ideal so we will give it a shot but first let's start with streaming because it's the easy way and

We know it'll probably work so I went and installed a parsec on the galaxy s 8 plus and then I went into Dex so really poor design feature but by defaults Dex doesn't allow you to resize apps this is pretty annoying only apps that are designed for Dex can be resized so the way to get around this is if you go into the settings and then into Dex settings and then into like Advanced Settings basically you can essentially force it to be able to go fullscreen so I did this so we could force fullscreen and then I fullscreen to parsec and hey there's my PC love that sky wallpaper

And many ways that there it is overall this is usable I actually can use this with the mouse and keyboard it's working fine now there might be the question of why would you do this if you have a monitor you probably have a laptop or other computer nearby so what opportunity are you gonna have to stream your PC from your phone blah blah blah blah don't bring logic into this that's no fun let's try gaming because what else are we gonna do so let's start by opening up a single-player game theoretically this is what would be best on this kind of thing because a little

Bit of latency is gonna it's gonna happen you're on internet you're not hardwired so there is gonna be some latency but for a single-player game it doesn't really matter so much so let's start up the outer worlds which I'm really having a lot of fun with by the way it would recommend I got in game here and nope this isn't working so for whatever reason the mouse on the Samsungs end won't possess I don't know how to say it possess the character or the screen or it just doesn't properly take control of the game my guess is it's because Dex is

Doing something to kind of force the mouse out of disappearing and so it's kind of messing everything up I don't really know however there is a way around this and that's hooking up a controller and using that now if you hook up a controller it actually works perfectly fine there's no issues here you can absolutely play run around do whatever there is definitely latency but I am able to play and this game for the most part is looking pretty darn good there's some distortion here and there resolutions definitely not as nice as it could be framerate we won't even talk

About it is playable but this is a single-player game and so you would kind of hope it's playable so I guess we should move to a multiplayer game and a good example that might be destiny too so I booted up destiny too and right away we had the exact same problem with the mouse and keyboard although this time I could kind of look around but not really go any further than that like I couldn't turn around all the way which is not ideal for a first-person shooter notably I could walk around WASD did work but the mouse didn't so again I

Hated doing this but I hooked up a controller to it and yeah it worked it was slow and you don't want to play destiny with a controller on PC that's a terrible idea and you also don't want to stream a multiplayer game like this either where every millisecond counts really overall you definitely can't do multiplayer games that's really what it comes down to single-player games for this would probably be fine if you're just streaming and you're okay with using a controller unless you could figure out a way to get the mouse and keyboard to work which unfortunately I

Couldn't overhaul this works you can run Windows 10 this way kind of but it isn't good this brings us to option numero dos and that is Ronna Windows 10 natively this isn't going to be easy but it might be possible now the go-to app for this if you look it up was limbo that's what it's called it is no longer on the Play Store but you can still download it from the github so that's where I recommend downloading it from not for many of the other sketchy download links upon downloading it and installing it and allowing permissions I got here this is limbo so essentially how it works is you

Can setup your own virtual machine create a virtual hard drive within your phone select an ISO and in theory you should be able to install Windows so that seems almost too easy and so after getting limbo installed I proceeded for the next many hours to try to get Windows 10 working specifically a 32-bit version and I couldn't let's put it at that once in a while I'd get stuck in recovery mode and the most common thing that happened was just the windows logo being up forever it would not go past this it's very frustrating because we're that close right the windows logos there

Come on bring us a little further I left it on for about an hour just to see if maybe it was loading super slowly but it still didn't proceed past that so I'm just thinking this isn't to work unfortunately suffice to say limbo isn't working for me I know online for some people it did work for them and that's great but I can't get it to work for me and I don't know why I tried so many different methods so many really really bad tutorials online from YouTube none of them worked really sucks but we're not completely out of the woods yet

Completely at it that's that's the wrong phrase for this completely out of the woods no that's not right at all regardless though there was another app that does something similar called box or something like that and yeah I'm not even go through this it didn't work at least not for me so I don't know why this wasn't all working I tried everything I could think of and everything tutorials had and you know I tried a lot of stuff I couldn't get it to work so Windows 10 unfortunately is not gonna run on the galaxy s 8 at least not this time but we could try Windows

XP just for fun that's what most tutorials use after all so why don't we do that and that actually brings us to now so I'm gonna go try to install Windows XP with limbo and we'll see if it works hopefully it does and then that would be kind of neat I guess and it's not like Windows 10 would run well on the Samsung Galaxy s8 anyways so let's give it a shot and I'll be right back alright hey we're back it's a day later plus a few hours and things went interesting before we talk about Windows XP I did want to talk about ps4 more specifically ps4 remote play that's a

Thing that can be used on samsung decks of course you could use it on a laptop for even just your smartphone without decks but it is possible to use it on decks and so if you are away from your ps4 if you're at a hotel you could hook your phone up to the TV and use it to play ps4 and I think Xbox is going to have that soon too but anyways just another potential use case for Dec so I thought I would bring it up but back to Windows XP I downloaded the 32-bit ISO went into limbo and set up the virtual machine as usual I then attempted to boot off the windows XP ISO and what do

You know it worked right away first try to this is pretty cool it started by loading a bunch of stuff and then I formatted the partition I had set up and then bam we were setting up Windows XP one thing I'll say is that it was really really slow moving like through options wasn't slow but the actual setting up was really slow definitely not as fast as when I did this with an SSD a little while ago but hey what do you expect I mean it's a smart phone and eventually we got to the Windows XP install screen and then it went from slow to barely moving it took forever it said to expect

39 minutes and then 39 minutes later it said to expect 37 minutes within a couple hours a few of the basic Windows XP prompts came up like what is your computer name that kind of thing and another problem presented itself the mouse the mouse doesn't work for whatever reason limbo isn't recognizing my mouse with decks as an actual Mouse I guess it's just not set up that way I can't say I blame it but this is resulting in the Mouse not actually really doing anything so I have to actually click and drag the mouse around which sucks but might be okay if it

Weren't for the fact that it doesn't tranq it around like you would expect it is extremely erratic and the mouse could end up anywhere when you just do a simple drag to any direction well crap but let's at least get into Windows XP because hey that's at least partial success I filled out the couple forms that wanted me to fill out even though it was very hard with an non-working mouse keyboard works fine though so there's that after this there was still a ton of setting up to do apparently so I left the phone to do its thing overnight when I woke up the next

Morning we'd actually moved past it Windows was wanting to auto detect my resolutions so I said sure why not and finally the Windows XP logo popped up this is it all this work leading up to this one beautiful moment and then twelve hours later I started to realize maybe we weren't gonna get past this I kid I realized it a little faster than that but yeah it was still up there 12 hours later stuck at please wait so that's a good sign uh this is enough for me finally finally give up it just isn't happening Windows on Android is not meant to be at least not today if I want

To push this further I could try using a DOSBox emulator for like Windows 95 or something but honestly I couldn't be bothered at this point this is taking way too long just to get to here moral of the story decks for Windows doesn't work unless you're just streaming your PC so yeah I'm sure everyone's shocked by that conclusion and also I think Dex is just kind of pointless in general if someone out there uses Dex if one of my viewers here uses Dex on the regular that's actually kind of impressive and I'm curious as to what you've used it for so maybe let me know in the comments

Down below I'm sure there is a use case for it for some people I personally though and I think most people just wouldn't have one so I do think Dex is a bit pointless but hey if you can find a use for it that's great and of course if you really desperately need to use Windows onto your phone windows phones are technically still an option I love the picture for the news there yeah I mean you could always use a Windows Phone even though they're unsupported and also kind of suck but what's interesting is that a Windows Phone actually did all this what Samsung

Dex does before Samsung Dex and that was the HP elite x3 it came with a doc that you could use to hook it up to a monitor and turn it into like actual Windows but it still used an ARM processor and so it couldn't run actual Windows apps making it just as pointless as Samsung Dex but hey it was kind of neat and I'm sure that's where Samsung got the idea for Dex the Samsung Dex is a cool idea and I've always liked the concept there just are not a whole lot of practical use cases for it I mean sure if you have you know a Samsung Galaxy Tab I could see you

Wanting to use Dex but that's a little different from what I was mostly talking about in this video Dex just isn't great and that's why not a lot of people use it and it kind of flopped I appreciate what Samsung tried but I would not be surprised if in the near future it was quietly discontinued windows on Android right now is unfortunately a pipe dream but as smartphones get more powerful hey you never know hope you found this video at least somewhat interesting I spent a lot of

Time on this so hopefully people will like it if you did maybe hit that like button and consider subscribing for more content just like this you can follow me over on twitter and instagram at 91 underscore tech if you want sneak peeks into what I've got going on I won't say anything but I do have a project I'll start working on pretty soon here that I'm kind of excited about not dropping any hints here probably well non-social at some point but for now yeah go follow me over there or don't I mean it's up to you anyways thank you so much for watching I'm Josh from ninety one tech

And I will see you all next time

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