7 Fixes For Windows Not Detecting Second Monitor Error

Are you facing trouble with Windows not detecting your second monitor? If yes, then you are not alone. This error is quite common among Windows users, and it can be frustrating not being able to use your dual monitor setup to its full potential. But worry not, as we have some solutions to help you fix this error and get your second monitor up and running in no time.

In this article, we will provide you with a brief overview of the Windows Not Detecting Second Monitor Error and share some effective solutions that you can try to resolve it.

We will cover some basic troubleshooting steps, such as checking the cable connections and updating drivers, as well as some advanced fixes, such as changing the display settings and using third-party tools.

So, if you are struggling with this error and want to know how to fix it, keep reading. We assure you that by the end of this article, you will have a better understanding of the issue and some useful solutions to try out.

Don’t let this error limit your productivity; let’s dive into the world of troubleshooting Windows Not Detecting Second Monitor Error with the help of expert advice and valuable insights.

Factors that cause the Windows Not detecting second monitor issue?

There can be many reasons for the external monitor or secondary monitor not detecting in Windows 10:

  • The monitor could be outdated or the display driver for the monitor is outdated. Display driver could also be too up to date, causing an incompatibility issue with the device.
  • You don’t have the proper Windows update to help with the adapters.
  • You didn’t calibrate the display settings.
  • It could be a faulty device, or problem with the drivers and adapters.

Check For The Hardware Issues – Windows 10 Not Detecting Second Monitor

The first step should be to check out the hardware issues. We’ve compiled a checklist for you to keep things easy. Check these out to help yourself troubleshoot and fix any hardware-related problem. If the problem isn’t in the hardware, you can then move to the other solutions (software) given below.

  • Check all the power sources and power cords. Make sure that every cord and port is connected firmly.
  • Make sure that the monitor is in a working condition. Check for the power button and turn it on.
  • See if switching the monitor off and on will work to reset the connection.
  • Diagnose with the built-in control of the monitor or TV for the proper connectivity with the PC.
  • If nothing works, remove all the cables and reconnect everything. Keep your PC shut down during this process. Then, boot up your PC and check.
  • You might have to check the HDMI or DisplayPort versions and the cable version. Make sure that your PC supports the one the Monitor comes with. This is a rare error, but quite possible.
  • Try to use a port extension, or change the port to see if that solves the problem.
  • If you’re unsure about the Monitor working, connect it to another PC or laptop.
  • You can connect another Monitor to see if the issue is perhaps with the Graphics Card. It is quite common for Graphics Card to work with some monitors, and not with others.
  • Make sure to remove all the non-essential hardware and their connection. Doing this will open up the space and possibility for the PC to connect with the monitor.
  • Check for any firmware updates of the Monitor.
  • If you’re using a DisplayLink, make sure that it is compatible with your monitor and PC. 

Solutions To Fix Monitor Not Working With Windows 10 As Secondary Connection

  1. Try To Manually Detect The Second Monitor
  2. Check The Graphics Driver 
  3. Scan For The Hardware Changes
  4. Change The Monitor’s Frequency
  5. Use The Project Option
  6. Use A Wireless Display
  7. The Optional Windows Update Method 

Fix Second Monitor Not Detecting In Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, And XP

1. Try To Manually Detect The Second Monitor

Display settings page in the Windows Settings

There’s a manual option available in Windows 10 to detect the second monitor. In some cases, the error for not detecting the monitor could be due to the automatic procedure. So, you can give this solution a try:

  • Go to the Start Menu and on the left-side, select Settings. If not, then press Windows + I to launch settings.
  • Go to the System option and then in the left-panel, select Display.
  • Scroll and find the ‘Multiple Displays’ option. Click on the Detect button under it.
  • This should help your system find the monitor.
  • If this doesn’t work, you can also go to the ‘Rearrange your displays’ option. Click the Detect button under it.

2. Check The Graphics Driver

Display adapters and Monitors sections in the Device Manager

Every hardware on your computer requires a driver to work with the Operating System. The driver bridges the gap between software and hardware. Without the proper driver, you won’t get to connect the hardware you want. Your speakers, keyboard, mouse, everything needs a driver.

So, if you are facing the problem of Windows 10 not detecting the second monitor, you can rely on the driver option. This solution will cover a wide range of diagnoses available. So, brace yourself for plenty of solutions:

  • First, you need to launch the Device Manager. You can do it via Run (Type: devmgmt.msc in Run and hit enter). In the Search Bar, you can search for the Device Manager.
  • Next, go to the Graphics Driver, and Display Adapters option and expand the list.
  • If there is more than one driver, it’s time for you to get to work.
  • Right-click on the first one, then go to the Properties. Navigate to the Driver Tab.
  • There, you can click on the option to Roll Back Driver. This is the first step that you should take. You can try it for all the Display Adapters available. But, try to find the one that correlates to the monitor you’re trying to connect.
  • Provide your reason for the rollback, click Yes and move ahead.
  • You can also try updating the display driver in case you think there’s a latest version available. Instead of the ‘Roll Back Driver’ option, select ‘Update Driver.’
  • Then, select the ‘Search automatically for the updated driver software.’ Carry through with the prompts and the wizard. If you fail to find any, don’t worry.
  • You can also visit the website of your Monitor’s manufacturer. There, you can search and download the latest drivers.
  • If your Roll Back Driver, or Update Driver button isn’t available, you can manually do it. For this, you will have to visit the manufacturer’s website.
  • Also, make sure to repeat the Driver Update option for your Video Card. Often, updating the Video Card’s driver works wonders. You won’t face many problems with anything related to graphics and videos.
  • You can also right-click on the Drivers and uninstall them. Then reboot the PC and it will automatically download the drivers. If not, then click on the ‘Search For Hardware Change’ option in the Device Manager. That will help you fix the problem.

3. Scan For The Hardware Changes

Menu bar in the Device Manager

As mentioned in the above-given solution, you can scan for hardware changes. This is a great option if your Windows 10 doesn’t automatically install the drivers. But remember, this option only works with hardware that comes packed with the driver.

If not, then you will have to manually download or install the driver. You might have to use things like a USB flash device or CD that comes with the hardware to install the driver. If that’s not the case, give this option a try:

  • Relaunch the Device Manager. In the top-right of the menu options, you will see ‘Scan For Hardware Changes.’ If you can’t find it, go to the Action button first.

This option will scan for any connected hardware without the corresponding driver. Then, it will search and download the driver.

4. Change The Monitor’s Frequency

Advanced display settings section in the Windows Settings

There’s a refresh rate on every monitor. The refresh rate for the latest monitors is quite high compared to older ones. A refresh rate frequency is how fast the monitor changes images. You might’ve heard of 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz monitors. Hz stands for Hertz.

There are powerful monitors of up to 240 hertz in power. So, you might want to change the frequency of the monitor. This is especially a great idea if you have a new monitor but an older system.

  • Open the settings of your Windows 10 by pressing Window + I Keys.
  • Go to the System and then Multiple Displays. Select the Display Adapter Properties option.
  • Go to the Monitor tab in the properties, and find the Screen Refresh Rate. For most of the work, 60 Hz of frequency is fine. You can go ahead and apply this to save the settings.

If this doesn’t work, or if you want to boost the frequency, update your Video / Graphics Card.

5. Use The Project Option

Project menu for Windows 10

There could be a problem with the Display settings and not the Multiple Display option. In this case, you can try the Project option. It will help you change the display without going in-depth into the diagnosis. All you need to do is:

  • Press Windows Key + P together. A Project option will open on the right-side.
  • Select any of the options like Duplicate, Extend, Second Screen Only.
  • Duplicate will help you duplicate the same display as your primary one. Extend will work as an extension of the display you have, you will have to choose which side is it extending to. Second Screen only will shut down the primary display and only project on the second.

You can also play around and change the settings to see if that fixes anything.

6. Use A Wireless Display

Add a device section with connection options

Windows 10 comes with an option for you to connect a Wireless Display. The wireless display will most likely use the Bluetooth option. So, if your secondary display supports Bluetooth, you won’t have much of a problem.

  • Open the settings of your Windows 10 (Window + I key)
  • Go to the Devices and find the Bluetooth & Other Devices on the list.
  • Make sure to turn on the Bluetooth, if it is turned off.
  • Now, click on Add Bluetooth or other device.
  • In the devices, you will see an option to select a device. Click on ‘Wireless Display Or Dock.’
  • Make sure that the secondary display is powered and turned on. The Bluetooth on that device should be active as well. Make sure that other devices can discover it.
  • Select it from the list your PC shows. Then a setup Wizard will begin. Continue with the on-screen options until you finally customize and connect.

7. The Optional Windows Update Method

Advanced options window with the Update options

It is one thing to Update Windows 10. When you launch Windows Update, it doesn’t mean you will update all the components. Yes, it is a good choice to always keep your Windows 10 updated, but that’s not where it all ends.

There are often extra updates available in your Update section. These won’t download unless you prompt them to. If you download these updates, you can tweak up the performance of your system.

  • First, you will have to check for Windows 10 Updates. Press Windows + I and go to Update & Security. Then click on ‘Check for Updates.’ Follow through with downloading and installing updates.
  • After restarting the PC, go back to Update & Security. This time, click on ”View optional updates.’
  • There, you will find new updates for various components. You can go ahead and install the ones that are relevant. For instance, Driver updates will be relevant to your Monitor.
  • Click on the Download and Install button. Then restart the PC once it finishes the process. 

In case you can’t find the driver updates or drivers in general, you can visit the official website. There, you will find all the essential updates.

Conclusion – Windows XP, 7, 8, 10, 11 Not Detecting Second Window

Now you can go ahead and start fixing the Secondary monitor not detecting issues. You have learned how to navigate and solve the display driver option. Often, you can fix the issue by accessing the Display settings. In other options, you can change the Monitor frequency, update the graphics adapter, or even use the Bluetooth device option.

Having multiple displays can be highly beneficial. You can play games, or enhance your work productivity. The ease of multitasking certainly makes it worthwhile. We hope that you found the solution to the problem.

FAQs – Fix Windows Not Detecting Second Window

How To Fix Monitor Not Detecting In Windows 10?

You can go ahead and reinstall the Graphics drivers and access display settings. Change the monitor settings and see if that fixes the issue for you. IF not, then try the signal cable for monitor connections. Make sure that you have the best Windows Update, as well.

Can You Fix Windows 8 Not Detecting Second Monitor?

Yes, you can fix the monitor problem by accessing the Display Driver. There, you can update the Device Drivers. If that doesn’t work, check for the Windows updates and other Display Adapters. You can also use the Display settings method and change it to extension, or duplicate option. If none of these work, make sure that you have up to date Graphics card.

Is There A Way To Fix Windows 7 Not Detecting Second Monitor VGA?

For windows 7, you don’t have to worry about the Graphics Card too much. But, you will have to access the Display Settings. Make sure that you have the display adapters and display drivers that are compatible with Windows 7. The best option is to carry out Windows updates and move to Windows 10 if you have the latest monitor. After all, Windows 7 only supports VGA Monitor or Device.

What Is A Displaylink Adapter?

A display link adapter helps your PC use the USB port as a way to connect the second monitor. It doesn’t work all the time. You will need the latest Display Link if you’re trying to use the latest monitor.

Meet the Author

Abdul Rahim has been working in Information Technology for over two decades. Learn how Abdul got his start as a Tech Blogger , and why he decided to start this Software blog. If you want to send Abdul a quick message, then visit his contact page here.