How to Connect (and Disconnect) the Samsung Galaxy Tab and a PC - dummies

How to Connect (and Disconnect) the Samsung Galaxy Tab and a PC

By Dan Gookin

The connection between the Galaxy Tab and your computer works fastest when both devices are physically connected. You make this connection happen by using the USB cable that comes with the Tab. The connectors at each end of the cable are shaped differently and cannot be plugged in either backward or upside down.

Plug the USB cable into one of the computer’s USB ports. Then plug the USB cable into the Galaxy Tab.

  • You cannot connect the Galaxy Tab to a Macintosh and have it be recognized as an external storage device or media player.

  • You can, however, use Bluetooth to send and receive files between the Galaxy Tab and a Mac. It’s not the fastest way to exchange information, but it works.

  • Even if you don’t use the USB cable to communicate with the computer, the Galaxy Tab’s battery charges when it’s connected to a computer’s USB port — as long as the computer is turned on.

Understand the USB connection

Upon making the USB connection between the Galaxy Tab and a PC, a number of things happen. Don’t let any of these things cause you alarm.

First, you may see the MTP application screen appear on the Galaxy Tab. That screen indicates that the Tab is actively looking for the Samsung Kies program, which it can use to automatically synchronize information between the Tab and your PC.

Second, you may see some activity on the PC, some drivers being installed and such. That’s normal behavior any time you first connect a new USB gizmo to a Windows computer.

Third, you may witness the AutoPlay dialog box. Choose an option from the AutoPlay dialog box. From that point on, you’ll use Windows or a program on your computer to work with the files on your Galaxy Tab. Don’t be surprised if the AutoPlay dialog box doesn’t appear; many PCs are configured to ignore new gizmos.

Fourth, the Galaxy Tab is added to your computer’s storage system. You see it listed as a device in the Computer window.

When you make the USB connection, you can exchange information between your computer and the Galaxy Tab.

  • When the Galaxy Tab is connected to a computer using the USB connection, the USB notification appears at the bottom of the screen. Choosing that notification does nothing.


  • There is no configuration option for the USB connection. The Tab always connects as a portable media player.

  • You can obtain a copy of the Samsung Kies program for your computer from the Samsung Apps website. With that said, a lot of people dislike the program, and there are better ways to move files back and forth.

  • The Galaxy Tab icon in the Computer window may be named Galaxy Tab, or it could be given the device’s technical name, something delightfully cryptic like SCH-I905 or GT-P7510.

  • If you’re nerdy, you can open the Galaxy Tab’s icon in the Computer window. You see another window that lists the Tab’s storage, named Tablet. You can open that icon to browse files and folders on the Tab just as you can browse them on your computer.

Disconnect the Tab from your computer

When you’re done transferring files, music, or other media between your PC and the Tab, close all the programs and folders you have opened on the PC, specifically those you’ve used to work with the Tab’s storage. Then you can disconnect the USB cable. That’s it.