How to Enable or Disable Your Microsoft Surface Cameras

I recently bought a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 from someone on the Facebook Marketplace because I want to be able to play Starbound, and my regular computer is died. So died. My brother-in-law had used his Surface for gaming, which surprised me, but I figured that I'd give it a shot. So far it seems to work just fine for playing Starbound but I did have one issue.

My cameras didn't work. I looked and looked and looked trying to figure out why not. I even found this help article titled Windows 10 can not find or start the camera, but it doesn't actually have the information on that site that was my actual problem. I ran the Surface Diagnostic Toolkit, and tried asking all kinds of places with different questions, to my mounting frustration, none of them were at all useful.

Finally, though, FINALLY I stumbled on the answer. microsoft, surface, uefi, tablet, hardware

I recently bought a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 from someone on the Facebook Marketplace because I want to be able to play Starbound, and my regular computer is died. So died. My brother-in-law had used his Surface for gaming, which surprised me, but I figured that I'd give it a shot. So far it seems to work just fine for playing Starbound but I did have one issue.

My cameras didn't work. I looked and looked and looked trying to figure out why not. I even found this help article titled Windows 10 can not find or start the camera, but it doesn't actually have the information on that site that was my actual problem. I ran the Surface Diagnostic Toolkit, and tried asking all kinds of places with different questions, to my mounting frustration, none of them were at all useful.

Finally, though, FINALLY I stumbled on the answer. The Surface UEFI. All I had to do was shut down the computer (use the power menu, of course) and then wait 10 seconds to make sure it's really down, then hold the volume up button and press the power button. Boom. Now you're in the UEFI menu and you can do things like turn on and off your front or back camera. If you turn them off then your Surface will literally not have a clue that it has cameras. Zip. Zero. Zilch.

In my case, I wanted the cameras on, so I turned them on, then I think there was some save and reboot option or something.

And that's all there is to it. And maybe now the next poor techy who searches for "surface pro 3 turn on camera" or "surface 3 camera" might find some useful information instead of a bunch of random posts about camera quality. Who really cares? I mean are you out taking wedding photographs with your Surface? If you are then you probably need to have your hands broken. Use a professional photographer, or at least someone with a camera that's not the size of a dinner plate, okay? Sorry it's a bit off topic but really, tablet "photographers" are the worst.

Enjoy using your camera for other things.

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