Friday, March 12, 2010

An easy way to enable and disable the second monitor in Windows 7

Both Screen Resolution (desk.cpl) part of Windows 7 Control Panel and NVIDIA Control Panel offer a way to enable and disable a secondary monitor. However, they're annoying. It takes too many clicks, and there is a confirmation prompt which cannot be disabled. There is 3rd party software for this, but installing software for this seems excessive, and paying for it seems ridiculous. The OS and/or display adapter drivers should make this easy.

Fortunately, there is an easy solution. It appears under "Connect to a Projector" in the start menu and corresponds to "%windir%\system32\displayswitch.exe". It can also be started using the Windows+P hotkey. Best of all, it allows command line switches, which can be mapped to hotkeys via a utility like HoeKey:

Extend desktop across both displays:displayswitch /extend
Only use primary display:displayswitch /internal
Display same image on both:displayswitch /clone
Only use secondary display:displayswitch /external


Casey C said...

This is excellent advice. Thank you for sharing.

ND Test said...