How To Install A Second Monitor To My Computer
So you need to know how to install a second monitor to your computer. Having two monitors is great, as you can separate different windows or tasks on two different screens. This cleans up the clutter you would have with just one monitor, especially if you are doing work or other activities. Putting up a second monitor can be done in only a few steps.
- Make sure your video card is capable. Newer video cards with have two different monitor connections--the standard VGA and the new DVI connection. VGA is blue, DVI is white. To check this, look at the back of your computer. If you have an internal video card--meaning you're directly connected to the motherboard's onboard video--you will need to purchase an external card; if you already have an external card, but only the blue VGA connection--which your monitor is plugged in to--you will need to buy another external card.
- Select a monitor. It is usually a good idea to have the same size monitor as your current one. If you are currently using a CRT monitor (the big TV-like ones), it may be time to purchase an LCD or Plasma flat panel screen. These types of monitors have gone down significantly in price, so you may be able to purchase two for under $500--assuming you're going for the screens smaller than 21 inches.
- Purchase a DVI chord/adapter. While most monitors will come with either a VGA or DVI chord or adapter, make sure to ask the store's salesperson if the monitor you're about to buy has the correct chord or if you will need to purchase one. Nothing is more frustrating than returning home and discovering the monitor you have only came with the standard VGA chord.
- Connect. Connecting the second monitor is simple. First, make sure your computer is powered off. An added benefit is if you plug the power chord either from the back of the computer or from the outlet itself. Next, take the monitor's video and power cables and connect them to the monitor. Then connect them to the computer's video card and finally plug it in. Reconnect the power chord of your computer and power on.
- Monitor setup. When your computer begins, only one screen will start up. This is normal, as the computer is going through its normal start up. When you get to the log in screen, you should be able to see which monitor is set as the primary and which is the secondary. Once you log in, your video card's manager (or the OS plug and play) will find the second monitor and provide you with the steps for setting it. You can choose which display is the primary and which is the secondary, what should be displayed (if you want the second to be a clone of the first or continuous), and other options.
Enjoy! Once everything is set, you'll now have two monitors! Begin trying it out by working on something that would require two windows up, say a web browser and a word document. You no longer will have to switch between the two, now you can go from one screen to another. This is also perfect if you enjoy watching movies or TV online, as you can watch in one monitor and still work in the other.