Fix Photoshop Pen Pressure on Wacom Tablet

This is a tutorial of how to get rid of the supper annoying Windows Ink functions on your windows box and still retain basic Wacom tablet functionality such as pen pressure changes opacity and size on brush tips in Photoshop.

Overview:
If you’re using a Wacom tablet on Windows for the first time, you’ll notice that there’s a bunch of weird unexpected behavior– hover-select when you don’t want it, right-click menus appear if you touch your pen to the tablet for too long, etc.
Don’t be alarmed, it’s just Windows trying to make your life annoying and complicated and baffling. It’s called “Windows Ink” and the idea is that if you use a pen tablet you want it to completely take over expected UI behavior and change how windows works, without your permission and in ways that will make you scream “whyyyyyyyyyyy would you think I want that” at your computer.
However, if you just turn it off in your Wacom preferences, you’ll see that basic Photoshop functionality that you probably expect from a stylus no longer works, such as “press harder to draw a thicker line” type things.
There’s a fix tho.
First, turn off Windows ink in the Registry. You can’t just turn it off in the system settings– the most annoying stuff like “hover to right click” will remain. Instead, nuke ALL of windows ink at the root level here:
Using Group policy editor:
Using Registry:

Unfortnately, Photoshop will no longer read your stylus as anything but a mouse, so you’ll have to fix that:

https://www.wacom.com/en-us/support?guideTitle=No-pressure-in-Adobe-Photoshop%2C-what-do-I-do%3F&guideId=001-669

What’s that you say? Their solution is to turn Windows Ink back on? Hell no.

Just update your photoshop preferences to make it see your tablet again. This doesn’t need to be done in CC 2014 (I think) it’s a fairly new thing in recent versions of Photoshop. Probably someone from Wacom got handed a big bag of cash from Windows to integrate their shit UX, and they went on to hand a smaller bag of cash to Adobe to make their system be the default.

First, create a .txt file called “PSUserConfig.txt” in Notepad or Sublime. This will contain instructions to revert to the WinTab functionality.

Type in the following lines (it’s gotta be exactly these or else it won’t work):

# Use WinTab

UseSystemStylus 0

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Save this file as a plain text file named PSUserConfig.txt, and save the file into the Photoshop settings folder: C:\Users\[User Name]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CC 2014\Adobe Photoshop CC 2014 Settings\.

You may have to set your folder preferences to “view hidden files” to see the AppData folder.

Restart Photoshop and you should be good to go!

To revert back, delete the PSUSerConfig.txt file. Or, move it to a different folder if it doesn’t contain any other commands, or change the lines so they read:

# Use Win8 native tablet support

UseSystemStylus 1

Other resources:

https://community.adobe.com/t5/photoshop/photoshop-cc-2014-incompatible-with-wacom/td-p/6253134

https://community.adobe.com/t5/photoshop/wacom-pressure-sensitivity-broken-windows-ink-off-psuserconfig-txt-added/td-p/10464939

About this tutorial

Use this tutorial however you want, feel free to add to it, be sure to forward it to whomever and give it away for free. If you charge some lazy bastard for this tutorial, you suck. If you use it for a performance and you make money– you rock! If you have some questions, advice, or praise, contact me at: info(at)ericmedine(dot)com