Fix Second Monitor Not Detected on Windows 10 [Solved]

By April Cai in Common Errors Tags: DriversWindows 10

Adding an extra display to Windows is one of the best ways to improve your work productivity or create a more immersive gaming experience.

But unfortunately for a lot of Windows 10 users, it doesn’t always work as it should. Quite a few people have reported an error message telling them their second monitor can’t be detected, even though they know the monitor works and the video output it’s connected to is fine.

If this is happening to you too, don’t give up hope. Usually it’s an easy problem to fix.

Why can’t Windows 10 detect my second monitor?

Usually it’s a driver problem. If your video driver is out of date, incorrect or faulty, Windows 10 won’t be able to extend or mirror your desktop to your second display. It’s also possible that your monitor driver is causing the problem.

How do I fix this error?

Here are 2 solutions you can try to fix this problem. You may not have to try both of them; try Method 1 first, and if it doesn’t work, try Method 2.

Method 1: Roll back to previously installed video & monitor drivers
Method 2: Update your video & monitor drivers

Method 1: Roll back to previously installed video & monitor drivers

Sometimes the latest drivers don’t work properly on Windows 10. To check if this is what’s causing your problem, simply roll back to a previous version of your video driver (aka ‘display driver’) and your monitor driver.
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key  and X (at the same time) to invoke the quick-access menu.

2) Click Device Manager.



3) In the Display adapters section, right-click on your display device software, and select Properties.



4) Select the Driver tab and click Roll Back Driver, then follow the on-screen instructions.



5) Go back to the Device Manager again, but this time expand the Monitors section, right-click on your second monitor, and select Properties.

6) Select the Driver tab and click Roll Back Driver, then follow the on-screen instructions.

7) When complete, restart your computer, and see if Windows can now detect your second monitor.

Method 2: Update your video & monitor drivers

If rolling back your video and monitor drivers doesn’t enable Windows 10 to recognize your second monitor, it’s likely that you’re using the wrong drivers altogether.

There are two ways you can get the right drivers for your video card and monitor: manually or automatically.

Manual driver update – You can update your video and monitor drivers manually by going to the manufacturer’s website for both your video card and your monitor, and searching for the most recent correct driver for each. Be sure to choose only drivers that are compatible with your variant of Windows 10.

Automatic driver update – If you don’t have the time, patience or computer skills to update your video and monitor drivers manually, you can, instead, do it automatically with Driver EasyDriver Easy will automatically recognize your system and find the correct drivers for your exact video card and monitor, and your variant of Windows 10, and it will download and install them correctly:

1) Download and install Driver Easy.

2) Run Driver Easy and click the Scan Now button. Driver Easy will then scan your computer and detect any problem drivers.

3) Click the Update button next to the flagged video driver and/or monitor driver to automatically download and install the correct version of that driver (you can do this with the FREE version).

Or click Update All to automatically download and install the correct version of all the drivers that are missing or out of date on your system. (This requires the Pro version which comes with full support and a 30-day money back guarantee. You’ll be prompted to upgrade when you click Update All.)

4) Restart your computer and check to see if Windows 10 can now detect your second monitor.

That’s all there is to it. Hopefully one of these methods resolves your problem, and you can now extend your desktop to your second monitor, or mirror/project your laptop onto your second monitor.

Please feel free to leave your comment below if you have any questions.

  • Jürgen Meriste

    I just got this problem after “windows update” that was forced on me, I was in middle of my game and stream when suddenly all my 3 screens turned black, now after this update windows cant detect my 2nd and 3d monitor, while before update they were perfectly fine (there cant be driver error because I checked it before I started my stream) so… now I have this problem I cant even check my drivers cause windows cant find them and my monitors aint working when plugged in my PC, plugged in PS4 they are perfectly fine!! thankyou microsoft for ruining my PC

  • Alistair Johnson

    Hi, neither method worked for me. “roll back driver” is grayed-out and Driver easy says both monitor drivers are up-to-date, Al

  • James Henriksson

    I have a HDMI TV plugged in as second monitor and my regular monitor (BenQ GL2450) couldn’t be identified. All I did was 1) Turn off PC. 2) Unplug HDMI. 3) Start PC. 4) My regular monitor worked after that and I just plugged the HDMI cable into the TV and eveything worked.

  • Chris Petrowsky

    This post didnt help me because my roll back driver options is grayed out. What do i do now?

    • Mitesh Chavda

      any luck?

    • Toni Anderson

      Hi Chris, I had the same issue as you, so I tried the ‘update driver’ option in the end (thinking, this is going to be a mission / waste of time from previous experiences). Windows asked me if I wanted it to do a search for me, I pressed OK, and it found & updated the driver in seconds! OMG!! And the monitor turned on by itself!!! Yay!
      My set-up is: Laptop screen, 2nd screen plugged into the HDMI port, and 3rd screen plugged in via ST Lab USB 2.0 to VGA adapter.
      Windows somehow forced the ‘Windows 10 Fall Creators’ update to start on my computer yesterday afternoon, after me choosing ‘not now’ for several weeks (as from experience over the last couple of years has proved at least one or two things stop working after an update and it always takes me ages to figure out how to put things back to rights. (and I really did not want to waste time doing that at the moment!!)
      Anyways, when my PC finally rebooted 3 hours later, my laptop could not detect the 3rd screen! Thanks Windows – I had an important deadline yesterday that you really stuffed me on – I was up working to midnight in the end, and it was just GREAT working a screen down. Grrrr. Seriously thinking of switching to Apple because of these friggen updates. After this issue – it is on my To Do list next month to take a proper look at the pros & cons of switching from Microsoft to Windows – this is just not on, we customers shouldn’t have to put up with this crap.
      Anyways, the instructions above were really handy, as it showed me where to find the drivers, and I could clearly see there was an issue with the 3rd driver (see attached screen clipping). Thanks so much April! 🙂

  • Janie Faison

    Hi, Im having similar issues. I am attempting to connect hdmi with windows 10. Drivers are up to date, and there is not an option to revert. The monitor is not being recognized when I try to detect it. Any advice?

  • itsmeferu

    i have a problem… about month ago i was able to “roll back” but now i cant … and my pc just wont sence any monitor and telling me to reinstall drivers but i cant coz i have old pc and win10 on it but my drivers are only for win7

  • Kirsten Trefflich

    This worked for me a couple months ago after an update. But after the most recent Windows 10 update, nothing is working. Rolling back drivers is not an option. I even purchased Driver Easy and have updated everything, to no avail. Duplicate display on each (of 2) monitor. Any advice?

    • April Cai

      Hi, Trefflich. Sorry to hear that you confront this problem again. Here’re some extra things you can try while you’re sure the display and monitor driver are up-to-date on your computer:
      1) Go to Device Manager, uninstall your display adapter and monitor, then restart your computer, then try to project your PC to see if it succeeds.
      2) You can try do perform a System Restore if you do some changes on your computer recently, restore it to the time when your second monitor works. To do system restore, we have a small guide for you here: https://www.drivereasy.com/knowledge/how-to-do-a-system-restore-in-windows-10/
      Hope it works. Good luck.

  • Mark Parker

    Hi, I had the same problem and was without monitor for days. None of the above worked. However I finally managed to solve the problem by typing in troubleshoot in the search button on left hand side of screen. Clicking on first option takes you to a second screen and i clicked on troubleshoot “hardware and devices”. After a couple of minutes, it told me that windows had made some changes which should fix the problem after restart. I restarted computer and hey presto everything was working again

  • Suleman Ahmed

    I am not able to click on roll back the drivers and all of the drivers are up to date. I have just used the monitor before i updated windows 10 and now it wont work. I have restarted and done all the small stuff as well as search online. It is so amazing that windows software always gives these problems. I have had issues with my xbox as well, and yes i have tried on 3 different monitors. SIGH

  • Michelle Schroeder

    Thank you so much for this post with pics. I’m not the most adept computer person so when my HDMI stopped working I had no idea what was wrong. So I unplugged, plugged back in, plugged into another port, another TV, got another HDMI cord search online for an answer and so on. Realizing this happened after a Windows update I tried to contact them to get help. Big mistake, no response, no help, no nothing. I tried system recovery to before update, reinstalling drivers and none of these things worked. I have been trying to fix this since 11/24/17 as I’m on a fixed income and cant afford high priced cable I watch most TV and Movies online with HDMI. Was about to give up and pay someone to fix this when I thought I would try myself one more time. Was able to rollback ATI and it fix my problem with the help from this post. So thanks again

    • April Cai

      Hi, Michelle. Glad to hear that you’ve fixed your problem finally with this post. Have a nice day!

  • BrianMetzger

    Rolling back driver worked for me.

  • disqus_玖雲玲珑

    Thank you so much for your timely fix advice. I’ve been out of second monitor for a week and was just about to get a new PC or monitor when I found your article. THANK YOU! Step 1 Roll Back worked almost exactly as directed. Bravo!
    PS: I did not have to go through the Roll Back Monitor part. It was done automatically.

  • Gstreet Gstreetgang

    none of this worked for me. anymore suggestion? im desperate at this point

    • JustYogurt

      do you even have the driver installed for the CPU in your computer

      • Gstreet Gstreetgang

        It was working just fine one day then it stopped and refuses to recognize my second monitor. Drivers are up to date

  • Bill Nazzaro

    I didn’t even need to restart the computer. Just rolling back the driver did the trick. Thank you!

  • Chris Clarke

    I had this issue, second monitor stopped displaying, and the icons on my desktop were super large, almost like it was in tablet mode or something. I went through your first method and it worked. Thanks for posting this.

  • Mamamuchu

    Thank you so much. It’s worked.

  • Ka-Zee

    Method 1 worked.
    I rolled that mother back. All is as it was.
    Thanks

  • Garrett

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! I woke up one day to go to my computer and I noticed that both my monitors were showing the same thing, and when I tried to extend it to two monitors, it didn’t even know that there were two 🙁 I tried updating the drivers, unplugging things and plugging them back in, restarting my computer over and over, but nothing worked. Finally, this worked, I didn’t even have to restart my computer!! Thank you for your help!!

  • Jerry Ransom

    having problems with Win 10 not recognizing second monitor….
    Left my computer running while I ate turkey dinner… came back after a couple hours and the second monitor was changed from extend to duplicate and the screen setup woud ot recognize the second monitor (yet it ws working in duplicate). Tried all kinds of resets, updates, on / offs…nADA… finally I stunlbe on the the suggestion to roll back… as soonas I rolled the display adapter… WA-LA /TaDA
    I am back to normal… full control and back to extended function.

    • Hopping Yop

      I’m having the exact same issue and it happened around the same time as you. But in my case roll back is grayed out.

      • Jerry Ransom

        As noted in other comments…remove or uninstall the device manager/display adapters….. this will force win 10 to reinstall a new one if needed.

  • Peter Chavarria Montes

    This solved my problem, thank you.

  • Just Roll back display adapter driver helped for Ati Radeon – ati firehd2400 hm512m dvi

    BIG THANKS for article!

  • Sandi

    You’re my hero! Rolling back the driver worked for me too. Thank you!

  • Kimberly Dunne

    Thank you thank you thank you thank you. I spent over two hours this morning going through EVERYTHING possible… except this. I did the “roll back” on the drivers and got as far as Step Four when my display flickered and VOILA! Presto Chango! thank you thank you thank you. I was starting to panic.

  • Tung Le

    Hi, I bought an old Samsung monitor (2333t series), then I use the vga to vga cable plug into the hdmi to vga converter to connect my laptop to the screen. It worked at first but then a few second later, the screen didn’t show anything which means it’s black. I’ve figured out that the cable work well because when I unplug them, the monitor said “Check signal cable”, so that the problem maybe depend on the software. That’s it, did anyone’s in a situation as me? Help please.

  • Scott727

    This is the second time my dual monitor stopped working. I solved it the first time (several months ago) with a driver update. This time it suddenly stopped and all the drivers are apparently up to date. Running Windows 10 with Intel HD Graphics. Primary monitor is HP Compaq LA2205wg. Secondary monitor is LG 29UM58-P. I have an HDMI cable running directly from the HDMI 1 port to the CPU. The monitor says “No Signal” and the computer is not recognizing the secondary monitor. I have rebooted multiple times. I have tried to use “Roll Back Driver” but it is grayed out. The projection is set to “Extend Screen”.

  • Michael Slone

    I was unable to extend my screen – mind you the second monitor works, but only to mirror, when I tell Windows to detect second monitor, it says there isn’t one – when I use Win P I get an error – “Your PC can’t project to another screen. Try reinstalling the driver or
    using a different video card.”

    When I go to properties, Roll back is grayed out, using update driver gets me the standard Microsoft already has the best drivers answer – when I use device manager and remove the display adapter and reboot, I come back to the same thing.

    • Antony

      Micheal, my name is Antony, and I’m having the same problem, did you happen to fix your? And if is yes, how?

    • Anirudh Sethi

      hi,i am facing the same problem,any solution?

    • Lenore Riensche

      Exact symptoms and problem as Michael. Second screen is only a mirror.
      My rollback is grayed out too. Also, my main screen is now supersized (stretched) and I haven’t found any way to get it back to normal. Any solutions yet?

    • Kirsten Trefflich

      Has anyone found a solution to this? I am in the same boat.

  • Ed Cooper

    I have an Hewlett Packard A7E32UTABA 90W Docking Station, and an HP laptop, and I’m running Windows 10. I connected 3 monitors to the docking station, however, it would only detect one. So I went to “Settings” to make sure all 3 of my monitors appeared under “Devices” and I added anyone that wasn’t. After returning to my desktop, then I did a right click on my desktop and then clicked on “Graphic Properties”, then I clicked on “Display”, then I clicked on the “Multiple Displays” option, then I clicked “Extended Desktop”, then I assigned each of the monitors to an individual drop down box in the “Select One or More Active Displays” section. And then Clicked “Apply” and now all 3 of my monitors are being detected.

    • Antony

      Hello Ed, my name is Antony, could you please send me a screen shot of the option of “Multiple Displays” on the Display option. I will very much appreciated if you could assist me. I have 3 days try to ge my laptop to recognize the two additional monitors, and all I can get it to do is to mirrow both monitor as one. If you could write me directly at my email, I will appreciated very much. My email address is resquivel2473@hotmail.com.

  • Raze Arein

    I’ve been working for two hours trying to figure this out with an HPes. Rolling back the driver worked like magic. Thank you so much.

  • First just press WINDOW KEY + P and see if you can Simpy add the 2nd display.

    • Kayra Gemalmaz

      God bless.

    • I didn’t know there was such a shortcut in Win 10! Thanks for the tip, it solved the problem in my case.

    • Chris Petrowsky

      That shortcut doesnt work for me. I press it and nothing happens.

  • Elisa

    I had the same issue I have HP Pavilion Notebook – 17t-g100 CTO (Touch) and I had to go to the HP website and download an older driver for my display adapter (Intel Graphics 520), but this solve the problem, now I just need to fix the colors but is better than not having a dual monitor.

  • MJ343

    Alright so my 2nd monitor(previously a tv) was working just fine. I unplugged it for something, and then when I put it back in, it won’t detect it at all. Got the No Signal on it. The rollback method did not work at all. Any suggestions on if Driver Easy still does not fix my problem? The TV works but for some reason it’s not getting a signal anymore. If D.E. fixes it, then I’ll update this comment. But suggestions would be welcome!

    • jr92

      I’m having the same issue with my second computer monitor. After updating windows it no longer is working- very frustrating. Hopefully someone will have some suggestions!

  • Joy Kodani

    THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! I have been struggling my computer randomly ceasing to detect my second monitor for months. Until yesterday, simply deleting my driver software and rebooting did the trick. But after two days of multiple attempts and copious swearing, I finally found your fix in a desperate Google search. It worked like a charm. Color me happy!

    • April Cai

      Hi, Joy Kodani! Very glad we could help?

    • Jerry Ransom

      If you just managed the issue with Win+P key then you have likely not fixed it… I too have been haunted by several display issues the last 3 months… rooling back or deleting the display adapter may be the best more permanent fixes… MSFT obviously is passing a beta update off on us all.

  • Barb

    Hello! Roll back is not showing up for me, https://www.screencast.com/t/9oIa6jKeXzX

    And when I go to update the driver, it’s telling me that it is updated. Any advice? https://www.screencast.com/t/BNAywrILqY

    • April Cai

      Hi, Barb. To get the previous version or the latest version of your driver, you can choose to download from your display adapter manufacturer’s website as we mentioned in the article. For some reasons, Microsoft might not detect the update for you, thus you need to update the driver manually.If you want to save time, you can take a try on Driver Easy.