Remove visual rings / circles from pen tablet in Windows 7

When using a pen in stead of a mouse in Windows, rings or circles may appear when you click. This happens at least in Vista and Windows 7. I am using a Wacom Graphire pen and wanted to deactivate those. This is not as straightforward as it seems. The rings are part of the Tablet PC Input functionality of the OS - not of the Wacom drivers or application.

How to disable these rings in Windows 7?
  • Disable the "Tablet PC Input Service".
    This solved the problem for me for a while... until the rings came back for no apparent reason. I suspect because of an automatic update or updated Wacom driver, that reactivated the tablet pc ring feature.
  • Uninstall Tablet PC Components.
    Control panel -> Programs and Features -> Turn Windows features on or off -> uncheck Tablet PC Components. Windows needs to be restarted after this.
  • Kill the wisptis.exe process, e.g. via taskmanager.
    Then 1) rename \windows\system32\wisptis.exe to wisptis.bak, 2) create a textfile called wisptis.exe with nothing in it. Alternatively: open properties for wisptis.exe, go to security tab and "deny full control" for the "everyone" account. If "everyone" is not visible, click edit, click add, type in "everyone" and click ok.
I am not using a tablet pc, so these actions might have a negative impact when using one.

UPDATE 20100305: The wisptis.exe process still comes up when running some .Net applications. Even when the above tip is applied. Most probably it is copied from the protected cache / version history Windows keeps. To prevent this, download the tool "process blocker":

Configure it to block "wisptis.exe" and now the rings are REALLY gone forever.

UPDATE 20120718: There is a registry fix to disable the rings:

Download the fix from step 5. Try this first and if it doesn't work, then use the process blocker application.

UPDATE 20130410: ... or disable it via a group policy:
  1. Open Local Group Policy Editor:Run... gpedit.msc
  2. Navigate to User Configuration - Administrative Templates - Windows Components - Tablet PC - Cursors
  3. Enable the Turn off pen feedback setting.


Alexander said...

Thanks, this really helped me get rid of those rippling rings.

Anonymous said...

finally. I tried a million things...this did it. you're a genius!

mikejkelley said...

Thank you very much. Now I can get some work done despite Win 7's best efforts to deny me. God how I hate this OS. I miss Win2k, the greatest OS evar.