My New Surface 3 Pro Travellin’ Machine

2 minute read

Surface 3 ProI picked up a Surface 3 Pro over the weekend. If you want to read a *very* thorough review of the Surface 3, take a look at Corey Roth’s (@coreyroth) excellent write-up Complete Surface Pro 3 Review – 3 days later.

I went with the I5 256Gb model (just as Corey did), as it has 8Gb of RAM and will be able to run pretty much anything I need.

Since I can install just about anything that I use on my “real” laptop, I think it will be an excellent travel machine. My go-to apps are things like SharePoint Designer 2007-2010-2013, Office, Sublime Text, and a number of applications (not apps) that help me with the little chores in design and such. I’m cautiously optimistic about this machine. I also have a Surface 2 RT, and I just couldn’t get it’s form factor into the rotation between my monster laptop and my iPhone. I’m really going to try to do it with my Surface 3. I use exactly zero “modern” apps on my Surface 2 RT, and I can’t see that changing, except maybe to watch movies with Netflix in hotel rooms.

I connected the Surface 3 to my home office display rig (all via a single USB connection) and everything fired up great after a few minutes of installing drivers and screen flickers.

So I’m thinking of travelling *only* with my Surface 3. My work laptop is a hefty 10.5lb ASUS. I love it, but it’s a bit excessive. My next travel fun is to Australia and New Zealand for the highly popular Australia SharePoint Conference (#AUSPC) and New Zealand SharePoint Conference (#NZSPC) conferences. I hope if you’re reading from Down Under that I’ll see you there!

I think that presenting and demoing will work great from the Surface, as all the slides and demos are cloud-based at this point. Can anyone think of any reason I’d have difficulties?

I’ve picked up two accessories from Amazon that I think are required for successful travelling with the Surface 3:

so I should be good for USB, Ethernet, and projector connections. Can anyone think of anything I’m missing?



  1. Well, maybe. Not sure there’s a Windows equivalent to ChromeCast, but I’ve become a huge fan. I bought a Lenovo Android tablet, and a ChromeCast. ChromeCast is awesome; you can stream videos from Netflix/HuluPlus/HBOGo, as well as locally stored videos, to the ChromeCast, to watch on your hotel TV. Casting a video works in the background, so you can use your tablet for other things.

    In order to do that in a hotel room, though, both your tablet and your ChromeCast need to be on the same network. To do that, I use an Asus travel router, which connects to the hotel WiFi and allows you to share it on your own network among your own devices:

    What’s the Windows equivalent to ChromeCast? Is there one?

    Hope all is well

  2. Keep us up to date on this transition. I am thinking about doing the same thing and leaving my work laptop at home. Let us know how the USB thing works out. I used the Samsung Slate Series 7 for a while and the USB adapter I purchased didn’t work well.

  3. Hey Marc,

    The only caution I would give is to check your display adapter before you leave. The Microsoft video adapters have their housing at an angle, the angle happens to match the angle of the bezel of the Surface. This is true of all models, not just the Pro3, though that’s where I discovered it. The third party adapters have a square outer housing, like a normal adapter does. Problem is the video ports are not as deep as USB, so the adapter makes a very loose connection and is easy to disrupt. Where the Microsoft adapter sits fully seated and flush due to the angle of the housing. While the MS adapter is double the price. And you need two of them to get VGA and HDMI out, They are worth it for the connection fitting, IMO.

    Hope that helps!


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