Dual moniters

So I want to upgrade to two moniters. What do I need other than a second moniter and how to I make it work?

I do not intend to drill holes in either one.

As long as your video card has two outputs, just plug in the second monitor and Windows will take care of it.

You either need a video card that supports two monitors, or you need two video cards.

To make it work, you need to plug both monitors into the video card(s).

You’ll also have to bring up the desktop properties, select the second monitor, and check the ‘Extend desktop onto this monitor’ box before it’ll actually activate the second monitor. (Or at least that’s how ATI’s drivers act.)

And usually, games will only work on the primary monitor.

Which isn’t a problem because you can switch which monitor is ‘primary’ easily whenever you want (in fact, you can have a saved profile for this and just switch between them if need be).

Besides all the above, check the type of cable connection required for each monitor and make sure you can do the connection on the video card. If it’s a VGA (analog, blue cable) then you’ll need a VGA connection on the video card (also blue). For DVI, look for a white end on the cable and a white connector on the video card. You can get adapters that allow you to plug a VGA cable into a DVI outlet, if need be (that’s how I have one of my two displays set up, since my video card has two DVI).

Fixed. I’ve seen a card or two that won’t do analog out the DVI port, adapter or no. They’re pretty unusual, but they’re out there.

Cool. I’ll file that away as something to advise folks to watch for. Hate the idea of someone getting all jittery over setting up dual-display wonderfulness only to have it go clunk because of a lack of functioning conversion.

Now, if only I can figure out how to get my 7800GTX to display different wallpaper on each display. It’s an option in the settings, but it doesn’t work. Gave up on it a long while back, but perhaps I’ll give another stab at it if anyone has any tricks.

A ghetto way of doing it is put the images side to side in one image.

– Xaroc

That works for a stretched desktop (one that essentially makes one big desktop over the two displays) but in my setup all I’d get is that new image displayed on both displays (it’s not cloned, it’s extended, with my taskbar only on the primary). It’s quite strange that different wallpaper settings don’t work, and I can’t find a single note on the problem existing anywhere else. Perhaps I’ll give NVidia a buzz.

It does work. Use a doublewide wallpaper (3200x1200 for example) and set it to tiled, not centered or stretched.

Hmm. The way that my displays are currently set up, the wallpaper displays individually on each display. If I create a big wallpaper, it won’t continue over to the other display, it’ll just show smaller on each monitor (i.e. two copies). Perhaps it’s a configuration change that’s needed? My displays are 1680x1050 and 1280x1024 (or 1280x960, it doesn’t matter which).

Works on my Mac. :)