I have a setup with two screens, a primary one which is my laptop screen, and a secondary one, my monitor, which is in extended mode. Whenever I open a new file or application, it automatically opens in the primary screen, and I have to manually drag it to the secondary screen.
Is there a shortcut or a way to switch the primary and secondary screens so that I can open files in the screen where I want them to appear?
Laptops have become an essential part of our daily lives. They are portable and can be used anywhere, making them a popular choice for people who work on the go. However, sometimes we need more screen space than what a laptop provides. In such cases, we can connect an external monitor to our laptop and use it in extended mode. This allows us to have two screens, with one acting as the primary screen and the other as the secondary screen. But, how do we open files or applications directly on the secondary screen? In this blog post, we will discuss how to open a laptop in extended mode and switch between the primary and secondary screens.
Connect Laptop to External Monitor
Before we can use our laptop in extended mode, we need to connect it to an external monitor. To do this, we need an HDMI or VGA cable, depending on the ports available on our laptop and monitor. Once we have the cable, we can connect one end to the laptop’s video output port and the other end to the monitor’s input port. Next, we need to turn on the monitor and select the correct input source. The laptop should automatically detect the external monitor and use it as the secondary screen.
Open Laptop in Extended Mode
Now that we have connected the laptop to the external monitor, we can use it in extended mode. To do this, we need to go to the display settings on our laptop. This can be done by right-clicking on the desktop and selecting Display Settings. In the Display Settings window, we should see two screens labeled as 1 and 2. Screen 1 is the laptop’s screen, and Screen 2 is the external monitor’s screen. To use the laptop in extended mode, we need to select Screen 2 and then select the Extend desktop option. This will enable us to use both screens simultaneously.
Switch Primary and Secondary Screens
By default, the laptop’s screen is set as the primary screen, and the external monitor is set as the secondary screen. This means that any new files or applications we open will open on the primary screen. To switch between the primary and secondary screens, we need to go to the display settings again. In the Display Settings window, we should see two screens labeled as 1 and 2. To switch the primary and secondary screens, we need to select Screen 2 and then click on the Make this my main display option. This will set the external monitor as the primary screen, and any new files or applications we open will open on the secondary screen.
Use Windows Key + P Shortcut
Another way to switch between the primary and secondary screens is by using the Windows Key + P shortcut. This shortcut allows us to quickly switch between different projection modes, such as PC screen only, Duplicate, Extend, and Second screen only. To use this shortcut, we need to press the Windows Key + P keys together, and a menu will appear on the screen. From this menu, we can select the projection mode we want to use. To use the secondary screen as the primary screen, we need to select the Extend option.
Using a laptop in extended mode can be very useful, especially when we need more screen space. By following the steps mentioned in this blog post, we can easily connect our laptop to an external monitor and use it in extended mode. We can also switch between the primary and secondary screens using the display settings or the Windows Key + P shortcut. This allows us to open files and applications directly on the screen we want to use.
If your keyboard provides the option to modify the behavior of the fn keys, the following steps can be taken to customize them:
- Download NirSoft (it has a bunch of useful tools)
- Extract the file
multimonitortool.exe(under NirSoft folder) to the desired location.
- Create a txt file next to it (the name doesn’t matter), and put that content inside:
- Save and rename the extension to
If you run this file, it will switch your primary monitor to the next available.
Now you can setup your keyboard to execute that file when a specific Fn key is pressed.