Guide To Setting Up Dual
Why Would You Want Two Monitors?
Having two monitors may sound like something from the movie
"Hackers", but the reality is far more day to day. After
all, how many times have you had a document on the screen, and
you needed to switch to your web browser or a spreadsheet - you
can only see one at a time - unless to reduce each window size,
which is not really a viable solution. The answer to this
problem is more screen space.
Of course, you could by a bigger monitor - this does work up to
a point - the point where you run out of resolution on one
monitor. But adding another monitor, especially having two
large monitors, gives you a totally different vista (no pun
intended!). With two monitors you can have your browser
and massive spreadsheet on screen at the same time. You
can be viewing a large webpage and pasting text into your
PowerPoint or Word document. In short, having two monitors
dramatically improves your productivity.
A typical dual monitor setup
Most people don't have any idea how really easy it is to set up
dual monitors on their system. However, there is one thing
you must have to be able to do it! A second video card.
Here is a list of what you would need, but remember, this is an
upgrade that almost anyone can perform:
What You Need
They can be the same or totally different - two LCD, two tube
monitors, one of each. They can also be different resolutions,
and different physical sizes.
Microsoft Windows XP or Vista
To easily setup dual monitors you can use Windows 2000, but
it is much easier with XP or Vista.
Second Video Adaptor Card
The second card can be a simple VGA or higher resolution
state of the art NVIDIA video card. Of course, some PCs come
with dual monitor support (2 video cards/outputs) built-in - so
check you system before buying a second video card.
Optional Dual LCD Monitor Stand
If you have two LCD monitors with VESA compatible mounts, a
dual monitor stand makes sense - it saves desk space and mounts both
monitors at the same level for better use.
That's it. However, it is
recommended to extend the RAM memory in your system to 2GB, as each
screen will use memory - but even on a 1GB main memory system, dual
monitors work wonderfully.
Two Separate Monitors Configured Together
Putting It All Together
You start by selecting your second monitor and video card, then
installing the second video card in your computer (following the
manufacturer's instructions). Once the second video card
is installed (along with its driver, if any), you connect the
second monitor, power on the system and open the Windows Control
Properties or Appearance & Themes from the Windows control
When the Display Properties appears, select "Settings".
You should see two monitor icons identified as "1" & "2".
(If you do not, you should consult the system and second video
Click on the
"2" then on the option to "Extend my Windows desktop onto this
monitor". Optionally, you can choose to make the second
monitor your primary monitor. You probably want the larger
of the two monitors as your primary. But as the video
below shows, you have numerous options.
That's all there really is to setting up dual monitors. If
you use an optional dual monitor stand, you can recover your
desk space, and of course, the monitor stand may need to be
assembled. The this is so easy, it is a wonder more users
don't use multiple monitors.
dual monitor configuration is set up, you can use your mouse to grab the title bar of
a window and drag it to your new display. If a window does not move when you
drag it, double-click the title bar first, and then drag it. Having two monitors
will forever change the way you work with your computer. Be creative and
experiment with the sizing of application windows and what information you can
keep in constant view while doing multiple tasks. You will even see that
you can have windows split between the two screens!
Setting Up A Typical
you want the most professional configuration, you can use one of
the very affordable dual monitors stands available. In the
following video we show you how to set up your stand and dual
Dual monitor stands are readily available. Simply return
to our website, and enter "Dual Monitor Stand" in the search
Most stands will support two monitors up to 22 inch size each,
so you can truly take control of your computing.
Using Your Laptop with
If you have a laptop computer made in the last several years,
you can almost certainly support an external monitor by
connecting it to the VGA or DVI connector on the back of your
computer. The external monitor can easily act as a second
display to your laptop's built-in display.
Simply connect the external monitor (acting as your second
monitor), and follow the steps above.