How to Connect a Laptop to a Projector

A projector works with a laptop similar to an external monitor, except the display is shown on a larger screen. This is useful for business presentations, school reports, creating your own home theater or creating a massive battleground in the latest computer game. Although some projectors connect to laptops via a USB cable, most of them use standard VGA, DVI or HDMI ports.


1. Make sure your laptop and Projector are both turned off.

2. Connect the video cable (usually VGA) from your laptop’s external video port to the projector.

Note: Projectors use VGA, DVI or HDMI cables. You must plug the cable into a matching video port on your computer. Although some computers have both types of video ports, most laptops just have one type. Some projectors can be connected to a USB port on your computer with a USB cable.

3. Plug your projector into an electrical outlet and press the “power” button to turn it ON.

4. Turn on your laptop.

5. Open Control Panel by clicking the Start buttonaa922834-ed43-40f1-8830-d5507badb56c_91-16x1615 , and then clicking Control Panel.

6. In the search box, type projector, and then click Connect to a projector. (To use a keyboard shortcut instead of Control Panel, press the Windows logo keyurl-3a926d35733ddf25b272c05827a66c6d-16x16-c10 +P).

7. Select how you want your desktop to be displayed:

  • Computer only (This shows your desktop only on your computer screen.)
  • Duplicate (This shows your desktop on both your computer screen and a projector.)
  • Extend (This extends your desktop from your computer screen to a projector.)
  • Projector only (This shows your desktop only on a projector.)


The four choices for how to display your desktop

8. If you need audio for your presentation, connect the laptop’s “audio out” port to the projector, or to another sound system.

9. Sync the projector and laptop by holding down the FUNCTION keyfn and pressing one of the following keys to toggle:

fn keys

(Note: Depending on your computer, you may have to use a different F key than those listed above.)


 There are Common projection problems i noticed during projecting:

  • The user does not know how to set the laptop so that an image is sent out to the computer projector.
  • The laptop goes to sleep during the presentation and the signal being sent to the projector is terminated.
  • The screen saver comes on during a presentation and the signal being sent to the projector is terminated.
  • The laptop locks during presentation and the signal being sent to the projector is terminated.
  • The laptop’s resolution settings are set improperly so that the projector is not being fed the correct image resolution.

To avid all common problem i mention above you have to setup your laptop to certain way like cancelling screen saver, windows lock, sleep mode and setup display setting.  These are the things you can do it your self to present your presentation perfectly.

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