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Laptop and external monitor issue

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by skypilotpete, Aug 8, 2011.

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  1. skypilotpete

    skypilotpete Thread Starter

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    I have a Toshiba Tecra S3 laptop, running Windows XP Pro Sp2. When I plug in an external monitor, the laptop automatically starts up with the external monitor as the primary display and I can then go into settings and extend the display to the laptop screen. All fine so far. However, what I want to do is to play video on the external monitor and have other applications such as web browser on the laptop screen. However, no matter what I try, I cannot get this to work.

    I can play the video on the laptop screen and other programs can be viewed on the external monitor, but I don't want that. The reason for the external screen is so that I can view video at better quality than the laptop screen will give me.

    If I move the video window to the external monitor it goes there OK, but the video continues to play in full screen mode on the laptop screen as well. If I try to move other application windows to the laptop screen, the full screen video stays on top and the other windows cannot be accessed. There are no video controls accessible from the laptop screen, only from the video software on the external screen.

    Can anyone tell me what I have to do to have the video only play on the external monitor, and have the laptop screen available for other things? The video software I have been using is VLC and Windows Media Player.

    Toshiba Tecra S3, Windows XP Pro SP2, Nvidia Geforcce Go 6600
     
  2. Rockn

    Rockn

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    That isn't what that port on the laptop is for. Generally it just duplicates what is on the monitor screen and with the press of a function key you go from external, internal or both.
     
  3. raybro

    raybro

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    I'd like to know just how you did that.
     
  4. skypilotpete

    skypilotpete Thread Starter

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    Just the standard dual display settings - display settings, select second monitor and "extend display". You may have to make sure that "dual display" is selected within your advanced video card settings.

    I'm no computer expert, but I thought that having dual displays set up with a laptop and an external monitor was quite standard. My daughter certainly does it with her laptop at work, and routinely has different applications open on the laptop screen and the external display and can drag them back and forward across the two displays as if it were one extended display. That is exactly what I can do now with my set up EXCEPT for video.

    After extensive playing around I have now found that if I have the video player software window with all the controls etc open on the laptop screen, the video also plays in full screen on the external monitor. If I then drag the video software window to the external monitor, the full-screen video then opens on the laptop screen. So, my work around is to have the video software open in a small window on the laptop screen, and I can then view the video in full screen on the external monitor. I then also have access to other application windows on the laptop screen. I can switch between them as long as I have the laptop screen set as the primary display.

    However, the next bizarre thing is that when the laptop screen is set as the primary display, any applications that I open initially open on the external screen. If the external screen is set as the primary display, applications initally open on the laptop screen. What this means is that I have to open any applications I might want to use and shift them to the laptop window BEFORE I start playing video, because once the video starts, any new application window will open up on the external screen which has been taken prisoner by the video, and so cannot be viewed. No matter what I try, the onlyl way I can get access to other windows open on the secondary display is to close the video software completely.
     
  5. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    It's actually pretty amazing that you accomplished what you did. The port on laptops is not meant for a dual display and you will be very limited in what you can do. You really need a graphics card with 2 outputs.
     
  6. skypilotpete

    skypilotpete Thread Starter

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    You live and learn! I had no idea. This laptop was given to me by my son-in-law when he upgraded. When he bought it in 2006 it was pretty much a top of the line business model back then. I wonder if this explains why it is able to run some degree of dual displays.
     
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