Conducting a scanner demonstration on a PC screen

When you’re training a group of people in the use of a hand-held scanner, or running a demonstration, it can be helpful to be able to display the scanner screen on a PC and a projector, as shown on the right here.Microsoft have a “secret” set of tools called Windows Mobile Developer Power Toys that contains a program called ActiveSync Remote Display (ARD) that makes this easy. Well, relatively easy!

Here’s how to get it running. Note that this is only possible on scanners that run Windows Mobile or Windows CE.

The first step is to download the Windows Mobile Developer Power Toys from here.

Install the Power Toys, accepting any defaults offered during installation.

Next, make sure that you have ActiveSync (for Windows XP) or Windows Mobile Device Center (WMDC, for Vista or later) installed on your PC (or notebook). If you don’t, you can download these programs from Microsoft:

ActiveSync (for XP operating system) can be downloaded from here:

WMDC (for 32-bit Vista or later operating systems) can be downloaded from here:

WMDC (for 64-bit Vista or later operating systems) can be downloaded from here:

Install the relevant program from the selection above.

Next, insert your scanner into its cradle, and connect the cradle to your PC via a USB port. Wait for ActiveSync or WMDC to recognise your scanner – it may take a minute or two.

Then, open the following folder with Windows Explorer:

c:/Program Files/Windows Mobile Developer Power Toys/ActiveSync_Remote_Display/devices/wce400/armv4

Or, if you have a 64-bit version of Windows, go to this folder instead:

c:/Program Files (x86)/Windows Mobile Developer Power Toys/ActiveSync_Remote_Display/devices/wce400/armv4

Using Windows Explorer, copy the two files in this folder into the \Windows folder of your scanner. This step is important – ARD will not run without this files being on the scanner.

Now, open the ActiveSync Remote Display program. Most likely, the program will complain that it does not recognise the OS or CPU – this is because Microsoft’s ARD utility is a little old. Just click past the error.

After a few seconds, your scanner screen should appear on your PC screen. You can use your PC’s mouse and keyboard to control the scanner, but if you remove the scanner from its cradle, the connection to the PC will be lost and you’ll have to start the ARD program again.

You might be interested to know that we use the ARD program to capture scanner screen images for our manuals and web site.