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How to Use a Laptop as a Monitor?

The advent of laptops has made lives considerably easier. Portable and lightweight, laptops grant you the flexibility of working anywhere, at your own pace and time. Whether you use your laptop for school, business or gaming, there may come a time where you’d want to take it up a notch and use it as a second screen for your computer especially if you have an old piece of hardware just lying around catching dust, and are looking for more productive use for it.

If you want to try your luck with this process, outlined below is a step-by-step process on how to use a laptop as a monitor:

Before jumping into details, it should be noted that the process of using the laptop as a monitor provided below uses internet connectivity. One cannot simply connect a VGA cable directly to their laptop from the desktop as that is not how the display ports on these devices operate. They can only give an output through these ports as opposed to receiving any form of input.

Without further ado, here is a seven-step guide on how to use a laptop as a monitor.

  • Ensure that the operating system on the devices, that is the laptop and the desktop computer are both running a fairly new version of windows. A window 8 or a windows 10 version would suffice for this task at hand. If you have an older version of Windows, including Windows 7 or Vista, you can visit the Microsoft site and download the setup file for Windows 10 to update the O.S on your system.
  • The next part involves connecting the laptop to a Wi-Fi network. Both the desktop and the laptop need to be connected to a single Wi-fi, as well as the desktop you wish to replicate the screen for. However, you must remember that using an Ethernet cable as a substitute for Wi-Fi will not work, these devices will be unable to recognize one another, and hence, a wireless connection is crucial for the next steps to take place.
  • The next step is to simply add the laptop as a secondary display for your PC. This step can be carried out through a feature present inside windows called “connect to a wireless display.” This feature is usually used for standalone T. V’s and other wireless devices, but in our case, we will be using the laptop’s screen as our wireless display. Press the “Windows key” and the “p” key together and click on the option that says connect to a wireless display. Next, tap on “projecting to this PC” from the options that open up in the next menu.
  • Once you have chosen the aforementioned option, outline how the laptop will behave when you begin using the laptop as a screen (projecting). These settings include setting up a pin code, the laptop’s name that will appear on the desktop’s display devices, as well as other details in regards to easing the connection to the laptop.
  • The next step in how to use a laptop as a monitor is fairly straightforward. All you need to do is press the “windows key” and the “p” key on your desktop. Once done, click on “connect to wireless display” and simply connect to the laptop device listed on the window. If you opted to use a pin in step 4, you should use it here to connect to the laptop.
  • A small bar will appear on your desktop’s original screen, which informs you about the device trying to make a connection to the laptop, move to the laptop’s screen and it will give a prompt to either accept or reject the connection request. ( accept it to start using the laptop as the secondary display)
  • There’s nothing more left to do, every time you wish to connect to your laptop simply press the “windows” and “p” Then, go into “connect to a wireless display” and the laptop will be in those options.

For people who have always been perplexed about how to use a laptop as a monitor, we hope these steps help to clear your confusion. If you want to incorporate your laptop in other activities, all you need to do is follow the steps highlighted above, and your laptop would end up having a new purpose.

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