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Classroom Technology Guide

Connecting a Laptop to a Classroom Display

Step Number: 
1
Action: 

If possible, plug the laptop into a power source.

We have learned from service personnel that many laptop manufacturers, in order to increase battery life, have reduced power output so severely that when power is drawn by using the hard drive, sync signal strength to external monitor ports (which is critical for connection to the projector) may be lost. Also, your battery won't go dead in the middle of your presentation.

Screenshot: 
Step Number: 
2
Action: 

Find your laptop's video output port, and plug in the available input cable. There are several kinds, and you may also need an adapter cable to connect your particular laptop to the input cable available in the classroom.

Screenshot: 
video output ports
Step Number: 
3
Action: 

Next, use the touch panel or push-button control to set the room's display system to use the 'Laptop' input. Most classrooms are equipped with some sort of video input switching control nearby the instructor's station or podium.

Screenshot: 
Step Number: 
4
Action: 

Turn on your laptop's video output port.

Most laptops have keyboard combinations to allow the video output to be toggled between three modes: 1) just to the laptop screen, 2) just to the output port, or 3) to both the screen and the port. We recommend using the 'Both' setting, so that you can see exactly what's on the screen.

Screenshot: 
picture of keyboard's display switch key
Step Number: 
5
Action: 

Adjust your laptop's display settings so that your laptop's screen is sent to the output port.

Depending on your operating system and software, you'll have a utility or control panel for specifying how the system handles this external display. For Windows 7, go to Start > Control Panel > Display > Change Display Settings.

We recommend choosing to 'Mirror' or 'Duplicate' the displays so that the laptop screen and the projector show the same thing, instead of 'Extending the Desktop' and having to move your presentation window over to the other screen.

Note: Due to the differences between the size and resolution of your laptop screen and that of the projector, the image on your laptop screen will change.

Screenshot: 
windows_display_control_panel

For additional help, please contact the LTS Help Desk at 610-758-4357 or helpdesk@lehigh.edu