Help me set up my external, widescreen monitor

Digm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 21, 2007
20
0
Looking for some setup assistance.

I have a MacBook and an external monitor. The monitor is widescreen, with a 1440x900 resolution. I've successfully hooked up the DVI connectors and the monitor is working. I have mirror mode running, so the monitor and laptop display the same thing.

I want to do this:

1. Get the monitor to use 1440x900 resolution. Mirror mode has the monitor displaying at 1280x800 (the macbook display).

2. Close the macbook so that it still runs, but the screen is off.

3. When I want to use the macbook on its own, be able to pull out the DVI cable, and have the macbook resolution return to 1280x800.

Essentially, I want to only use the widescreen monitor while I'm at my desk, and then I want to be able to pick up the laptop, sit in the living room, and use it normally.

How do I do this?

Thank you!
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,638
61
Harrogate
Mirror mode will always mirror you exact setup of the internal screen. There is no way to stop this. You need to be in spanning mode to set the external screen to any other resolution.
 

Digm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 21, 2007
20
0
OK, so then am I able to set it up so that the main display is on the external monitor, and the secondary display is on the laptop?
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,638
61
Harrogate
OK, so then am I able to set it up so that the main display is on the external monitor, and the secondary display is on the laptop?
Sure but you'll still want to be in spanning mode. Then, with the external display attached, just drag the tiny menu bar to the other screen on the layout in Display Preferences.

When you disconnect the external display the menu bar should automatically migrate back to the laptop display.
 

Digm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 21, 2007
20
0
perfect. Thank you, Robbie! I didn't know you could drag the menu bar.

Now, lastly, is there a way to shut the macbook so that its screen is off, but the computer doesn't go to sleep?
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,638
61
Harrogate
perfect. Thank you, Robbie! I didn't know you could drag the menu bar.

Now, lastly, is there a way to shut the macbook so that its screen is off, but the computer doesn't go to sleep?
You cannot turn off the internal screen without shutting the laptop. This will put it to sleep. You can then plug in an external keyboard and/or mouse to wake it up. As long as you leave it closed the internal screen will remain off (this is called clamshell mode). If you open it now the laptop screen will wake.
 

Digm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 21, 2007
20
0
I use the bluetooth keyboard and mouse, so nothing external is plugged in.

Can I plug in an external HD and then close the lid?
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,638
61
Harrogate
I use the bluetooth keyboard and mouse, so nothing external is plugged in.

Can I plug in an external HD and then close the lid?
Sure, although if you have bluetooth peripherals I think you can wake it with the external screen attached and the laptop closed and get what you want. I don't think plugging in an external drive would wake it, but I could be wrong.
 

Digm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 21, 2007
20
0
Lo and behold, you are right my friend.

Thank you very much for your assistance.
 

ravenvii

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,584
489
Melenkurion Skyweir
You cannot turn off the internal screen without shutting the laptop. This will put it to sleep. You can then plug in an external keyboard and/or mouse to wake it up. As long as you leave it closed the internal screen will remain off (this is called clamshell mode). If you open it now the laptop screen will wake.
Wrong. You can open the lid after you've woken it up with the external keyboard/mouse. The screen will not come back on.
 

pianoman

macrumors 68000
May 31, 2006
1,962
0
Wrong. You can open the lid after you've woken it up with the external keyboard/mouse. The screen will not come back on.
correct.

these links to Apple's support docs on running in closed-lid mode might be helpful, even if the problem's already been solved.