Tuesday, July 26, 2011

How to Setup Dual or Multiple Monitors

By: Adie Pirie

Designers can never have enough space to create their design ideas, especially when it comes to website design. Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Word processing, Email and the Internet. We love to have multiple applications open at once, but it can become tiring continually minimising and maximising certain programs. By simply adding an additional monitor you can make your life so much easier and far more productive.

There are many ways you can make the most of having dual monitors:

•Design your websites on one screen and photo/image edit on the other therefore never having to actually switch between applications.

•Your second monitor can be continually used to check your emails.

•Use one monitor to keep the internet open allowing you to simultaneously browse the net for web design ideas and create at the same time.

Setting Up Dual Monitors (desktop)

Most modern desktop computers and laptops nowadays can support dual monitors without any extra hardware being needed. Some older desktops may however require either a new or extra graphics card (video adaptor) to be installed. Check the back of your computer to see if your video adaptor supports both VGA and DVI (it may have both or may have two of one, either way this is fine). If your adaptor does support dual monitors then setup is really easy. Connect your additional monitor and restart your computer. If using Vista or Windows 7 your computer will probably change you settings automatically for you but if not follow the steps below:

Windows Vista

•Right Click on the desktop and click on “Personalize.”

•Click on “Display Settings”

•Drag your monitors into the correct position and select the main monitor. (if your new monitor isn’t being displayed then you may need to install a driver for your new monitor).

•Set correct resolution of new monitor (get from list).

•Check extend desktop onto this monitor for the second monitor.

•Click OK

Windows 7

•Open Screen Resolution by clicking the Start button.

•Click Control Panel

•Click Appearance and Personalization

•Click Adjust screen resolution

•Select and arrange the monitors to your requirements.

•On additional monitor click the drop-down list next to Multiple displays, click Extend these displays, and then click OK.

Setting Up Dual Monitor (Mac)

•Connect the second monitor.

•Go to the Apple menu

•Select “System Preferences”

•Select “Displays”

•Select “Arrangements”

•Un-check Mirror Displays (unless you want duplicated screens)

•Align the monitors to correct positions.

Setting Up Dual View (Laptop)

Most modern laptops like desktop PC’s can support an additional monitor. Simply connect your additional monitor to the back of your laptop using either the VGA or DVI connector. Once connected simply restart the computer and follow the same setup steps as above for a Desktop PC. Unlike a PC by default windows usually mirrors your laptop desktop to the external monitor so you will need to change this if you want to drag new windows to the new monitor.

You can choose to mirror, or duplicate, your desktop on all displays. A mirrored display is useful if you are giving a presentation to a group on say a projector or a external T.V. If you want to increase your desktop area however, you can extend your display allowing you to use multiple applications at once or even give a presentation on your external monitor and continue to create design ideas on your laptop.