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Is there a command to power down the display in Windows XP? That is, a command that causes the video card to stop sending a signal to the monitor until input is received, much as power management does after a time.

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up vote 15 down vote accepted

Not as far as I know but you can use utilities like Monitor Off to power down the monitor.

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Excellent. This worked spectacularly. – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Apr 5 '10 at 17:02
The technique behind this is explained at codeproject here: – Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Apr 13 '10 at 17:21

There is also a utility called NirCmd, which supports not only this but more commands (like changing system volume, manipulating services etc - documented in the page linked). Usage is via the command line:

nircmd monitor off

And sometimes I've seen Windows "listening" to your last keystroke (the Return that confirms the command) after the command is "issued" and waking back up. A solution that has worked for me in most cases is:

nircmd cmdwait 1000 monitor off

Disclaimer: although this may be the third or fourth time I mention it here, I have no association to the NirCmd's team: just a happy user.

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Unfortunately it doesn't look like nircmd can be used to turn off a single monitor (in a multi monitor setup) – Sridhar Ratnakumar May 4 '14 at 2:17

Turn off display by shortcut

Why this script is good?

Display will sleep again in 3 sec
Even if mouse by accident was moved or any program waked display up.


  1. Download Gist as ZIP
  2. Unpack & run
  3. Link Display Sleep! will should be created.

Github-Gist / setup_display_timeout.cmd

How it works:

  1. Set idle timeout to 3 seconds (via Powercfg)
  2. Wait for any key press
  3. Set idle timeout to 1 hour

Part of code:

powercfg /SETDCVALUEINDEX %current_scheme_token% SUB_VIDEO VIDEOIDLE %seconds%
powercfg /SETACVALUEINDEX %current_scheme_token% SUB_VIDEO VIDEOIDLE %seconds%
powercfg /S %current_scheme_token%
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