Projector Tricks in Windows 7

Published in Windows 7 How-To by Steve Sinchak with 83,095 views

In older versions of Windows using an external projector with your laptop can be a difficult task. It seems like every laptop has a different function key combination to enable output for a projector. In Windows 7 that has finally been improved. Now, all you have to do is hit the Windows Key + P and the projector menu will be displayed.

The on-screen display will allow you to:

  • Show Desktop only on Computer
  • Duplicate Desktop on Projector
  • Extend Desktop to Projector
  • Show Desktop only on projector

If you don’t like keyboard shortcuts you can also create a desktop or taskbar shortcut to the projector menu. To do that, create a shortcut to "C:\Windows\System32\DisplaySwitch.exe".

Displayswitch.exe also has command line parameters that allow you to create a shortcut that will set a specific display mode.  

  • /internal
  • /clone
  • /extend
  • /external
If you wanted to create a shortcut that would turn off your external monitor then point a shortcut to "C:\windows\system32\displayswitch.exe /internal".
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Genius. At school, my laptop is the preferred one to use with projectors, because of this. Laptops with Vista is tricky to get along with projectors, and I have to step forward with my laptop.
Posted by Martin on 5 years ago

THANK YOU. This makes switching to TV OUT a breeze. No more need for Ultramon.
Posted by Gabe on 5 years ago

w00t! THANKS! No more need for Ultramon.
Posted by GBot on 4 years ago

pues ami me sucede que no pasa nada cuando conecto un proyector no se que sucede con mi maquina

Posted by pepe on 4 years ago

Great information, but there is no option /extend available in my windows 7 on my ASUS EEPC with Intel 945 chipset
Posted by JYB on 4 years ago

Hello, I am trying to assist a teacher in getting their Epson projector connected to their Dell Inspiron 530s PC. ( Running Windows 7 enterprise )
We have a splitter cable coming off the VGA port on the PC, one end goes to the projector the other end to the PC’s LCD display. As soon as we plug the projector into the splitter cable the desktop LCD goes black. The teacher needs both the projector and desktop viewable at the same time.
Any suggestions on how to do this?

Posted by John on 4 years ago

I'm willing to bet that your vid card doesn't support dual monitors. I've never seen that with a simple VGA output, it's usually a custom (HDVI?) connection. You may need to buy a card to put in the Inspiron
Posted by John Too on 4 years ago

taking time to swicth

Posted by deep on 3 years ago

I'm also a teacher and I would love to be able to extend my screen so I could have my desktop on my screen while I have what I want my students to see on the projector. Does my computer need to have two VGA ports in order to make this possible?
Posted by Conrad on 3 years ago

@Conrad, you can do what you describe with a laptop or a desktop with 2 VGA outputs
Posted by compu on 3 years ago

Thanks tons. I have a Windows 7 Media Center PC that I have to automatically update overnight. Sometimes it forgets to switch from its LCD screen to our large HDMI screen. This is just what I needed. I scheduled the task to run every day at 5:00 am just to make sure the right screen in running when you turn on TV every day.
Posted by Dave on 3 years ago

i accidently put my computer in projector only and my screen went black and i cnat get it back on how do you put your screen back on normal settings without knowing what ur seeing on the screen i have windows 7 on a dell 780 please help asap!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by marc on 3 years ago

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