Nov 18, 2014

High DPI Laptops and External Monitors

QtQuickSecretsLeakLinkMy wife recently got a Yoga 2 Pro. It works great and she loves it. Well she did until she tried to use it with an external monitor and launched Quicken and Quick Books. After doing research, it turns out she’s not alone. You can adjust the screen resolution settings for Windows 8.1 for either the Yoga or the external monitor but not both it seemed….. at first. Once you make the settings so


on your external monitor, then your high DPI display (like on the Yoga2) is  teeny tiny.  I found a solution.

I can’t be sure what I did that fixed the problem, so I need you dear readers to try some of this and tell me if it really works or if I just got lucky. Here are the steps I took as near as I can remember them:

  1. Right click on the desktop and select Screen Resolution from the context menu.
  2. Clicked the icon for the external monitor
  3. Clicked the text Make text and other items larger or smaller
  4. imageNow for the strange part. I checked the box that says Let me choose one scaling level for all my displays. This seems like it’s just the opposite of what I want. Changing any of the settings with this box unchecked modifies both monitors. But I was desperate, so I tried it.
  5. I then moved the slider down several notches. Hit Apply, and restarted.
  6. No Joy , things were very small on the Yoga.
  7. Went back selected monitor 1. 
  8. Unchecked the previously enabled checkbox. 
  9. Moved the slider back to the default larger setting.
  10. Hit Apply.

I thought I was going to have to restart but WAIT! All of a sudden the warning about the screen resolution for the external monitor being too small went away. Even better the double menu bar from Quicken went away. QuickBooks, Quicken and IE were all now usable on the external monitor. Things on the Yoga were showing up at their default readable size. Could this be success? Seems so.

About Me

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Tod Gentille (@todgentille) is now a Curriculum Director for Pluralsight. He's been programming professionally since well before you were born and was a software consultant for most of his career. He's also a father, husband, drummer, and windsurfer. He wants to be a guitar player but he just hasn't got the chops for it.