Laptop Not Detecting Monitor – What to Do If Your Extended Display Is Not Working

For those who multitask, a second monitor offers a convenient way to improve productivity. It creates additional workspace to enable you to accomplish more with ease. It is pretty easy to connect your laptop to a second monitor. The laptop not detecting monitor issue only occurs when you have a bad cable, outdated drivers, or maybe the monitor is turned off.

There are many things you can do if your extended display is not working. Below are five ways to fix the ‘laptop not detecting monitor’ problem.

Once you are certain that your cable is in good condition and isn’t loosely fit, try to disconnect and reconnect after a while or use a different cable to be sure it’s not a cable issue. Disconnect any accessory that can cause hardware conflicts. To be sure it’s not an issue with the monitor, connect it with another system. If it connects, then the monitor is not the problem. If these don’t fix it, try out these options.

Laptop Not Detecting Monitor – Working Fixes

Check to see if the second monitor is enabled

  • Right click on Start >> select Control panel
  • Next, click on Hardware and Sound, then go to Display
  • Click Adjust screen resolution >> then click on Project to a second screen
  • Next, click Extend
  • Go to Multiple displays and click on it. On the drop-down list, select Extend these displays
  • Click Apply >> then Ok.


You can run the Hardware and Devices troubleshooter to resolve the issue. This will make sure that any device is correctly installed on your computer.

  • Go to Control Panel and on the top right corner, click on the drop-down arrow by the View by option and select Large icons
  • Next, click Troubleshooting, then the View all option on the left pane
  • Next, click Hardware and Devices, then Next to run the troubleshooter
  • The troubleshooter will detect the issue causing your laptop not to detect a second monitor if there is such.

Force PC to detect the monitor

  • Go to Settings >> System
  • Click on Display >> then go to the Rearrange your display section and click Detect

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Update drivers

You can do this by checking Windows Update, installing the latest drivers from the manufacturer’s website, or Device Manager.

To Use Device Manager to Install Updates

  • Go to Device Manager and click on Display Adapters
  • Right-click on the graphic card displayed and select Update driver
  • You can either choose to search automatically for the updated driver software or manually. The former is better.
  • With the former, Windows will automatically download and install the latest driver for your computer. You can check to see if the monitor is now detected.

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Rollback the graphics driver

If you experienced this laptop not detecting monitor issue after a recent driver update, you might have to roll back to the previous driver. To do this:

  • Go to Device manager
  • Click on Display adapters to expand it >> right-click on the driver shown >> click Properties in the drop-down list
  • Once it opens, click on the Driver tab and click on Rollback driver. Click Yes and restart your PC.
  • If the rollback button is unavailable for clicks, that is, if it is greyed out, you will have to go to your driver’s manufacturer website to download the previous version for installation after uninstalling the latest version.

If you are to go to the manufacturer’s website, you will need your manufacture’s name and the name of your adapters. To get this, search for Device manager using the taskbar. Click on Device Manager, and then click Display adapters to expand it. In the expanded list, you will find your graphic card with the needed information.

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