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Peter Sheil

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Geekness [Dec. 31st, 2004|11:07 am]
Peter Sheil
I have recently discvered the joys of dual-screen working. I know, it's been available to a greater or lesser extent since Windows NT years ago, but it takes me time to come to terms with these new fangled things ;) The set up I have is a flat screen on a cute little stand to the left of my desk and straight ahead I have my lap-top, screen erect (oh, that does sound rude) on the desk base unit. The screens are set up to be side by side logically and it was no trouble at all to get that working - the laptop is Win XP Pro SP1 (I'm fighting installing SP2 but I know it's a rearguard action).

How does it all work? Well as long as a window isn't maximised you can drag it from screen to screen. When it is maximized it fills the window it is in, and if it straddles both then it pick one for you. You can set up one window across the two screens - I did this when trying to edit a document and needing two views, one of where I was cutting / copying from and one of where I was pasting the new, improved text - but truth to tell it is a lot easier to open two different windows and put each one on a different screen.

Everything seems to start off in the right hand screen, but it remembers where you leave it so it stays there the next time you start it in that configuration (it returns everything to normal if you are running with just the one screen).

There are a few strange "features" in it.

I have outlook set up to open in the left hand screen but all its message boxes and e-mail messages themselves open in the right hand screen. This can be useful as you can see the list of mail whilst reading one but does get confusing when you close the e-mail and keep looking on the same screen.

I have windows explorer set to open on the left hand screen - works fine but if you do a right click, properties the window opens in the right hand screen.

At times, quite rarely thank goodness, the mouse pointer switches between screens! *shrug - just windows I guess*

In general I've been pleased with the ease of setting it up and the reliability of it. The one thing that does keep getting me relates to the fact that I have a third screen to the right of my laptop. This is connected to a client network and has no connection at all with the local network. What tends to happen is that I'll be working on one system and then need to do something on the other so I'll try and move the one mouse pointer across onto the other system - and get frustrated when it gets stuck at a screen edge :) I guess that qualifies for "unreasonable expectations" for the systems.

Right, just chased the local helpdesk about a problem I have accessing a server (DHCP lease expired and won't reconnect) so I'm sure I'll get a call back soon (watches small pink object with curlly tail fly past the window ... oh look there goes another one!)

Peace and may all your technical problems resolve smoothly (if only!)
peter
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: 33w
2004-12-31 12:48 pm (UTC)
Heh.. I've been messing with two monitors for a few years ^_^ I did it a while back but the second monitor I tried using was soooo crappy it wans't plausible to do such a thing. I recently got a second monitor though... it's nice..



I keep Trillian open in the left/main monitor, use the main monitor like I'd use my computer if I only had one monitor, and have my playlist, AIM, and downloading things on the right monitor. It's a fun thing =X I wish I had flat panel monitors though.. *sigh*
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[User Picture]From: petersheil
2004-12-31 12:52 pm (UTC)
Looks cool. CRTs are still better for picture editing unless you pay loadsa money for v good / big flat screens.

Peace
peter
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