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One button to switch from only one computer monitor to two screens and back

Updated on October 14, 2010

You have a computer monitor and an LCD or plasma TV screen. You want to close the computer feed of the large screen when you are not using, because feeding the plasma from the computer when not using it will

  1. waste electricity
  2. heat up graph card in your computer
  3. Busy up RAM and slow down your computer.

So, would it not be great if you could just push a button on your keyboard and switch between one screens or two screens? Here is how step by step:

  1. Open up your text editor (right click anywhere, new, text document)
  2. Copy this and paste it in your text: rundll32.exe nvcpl.dll,dtcfg setview 1 standard DA
  3. Close this text, and when asked to save, give it a familiar name, like onescreen.txt
  4. Open up another text editor (right click anywhere, new, text document)
  5. Copy this and paste it in your text: rundll32.exe nvcpl.dll,dtcfg setview 1 dualview DA AA
  6. Close this text, and when asked to save, give it a familiar name, like twoscreens.txt
  7. Now you have two text files, rename their extensions from .txt to .bat If you don't see the extension, you have to make it visible by going to lets say My Documents, Tools -> Folder Option, then select View tab, to view the next window, scroll down to see if “Hide extension for known file types” is checked and then un-check it.
  8. Now you should have two files named onescreen.bat and twoscreens.bat
  9. Check if your bat files work, double click on the second one and your plasma/LCD tv should show your computer wallpaper. If it does not, the resolution must be out of range or some other common problem. Right click on your windows desktop and then click on properties. Click on the settings tab. Drag the screen resolution slider to the left to lower resolution. Apply and see if that makes it. Once you see your computer wallpaper on your plasma/LCD tv, you can experiment with your resolution incrementally to see which one works. Or, you can check your TV's specification as to how high of a resolution it supports.
  10. Once you have both of your screens (monitor and TV) showing your computer screen, double click on the onescreen.bat to make sure it reduce that to one.
  11. Now that both are working, double click on your keyboards symbol at the system tray (at the very bottom of the screen, right). if you don't see it, click on the little arrow there, it might be hiding.
  12. Depending on your keyboard programming check "shortcut" and browse to where you saved your files onescreen.bat and twoscreens.bat  Bind two buttons on your keyboard to these files.
  13. Use the buttons you bound to switch between one screens or multiple screens in an instant!

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