Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have a Dell Latitude E6400, for which I purchased the following docking station:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002L9D320/

The back has two DVI inputs and one VGA input. I already have two monitors hooked up to it using DVI, but it appears I can only use one of my monitors in place of the laptop's viewport rather than in conjunction with it.

Quick and dirty research points to the use of a USB display adapter, but I don't want to use that since I hear those use the computer's CPU to render the display and I can't sacrifice any more CPU than I already am.

Edit: I should have clarified better that what I want to do is use my laptop screen in addition to the two monitors plugged into it. Thus, there will be three total viewports.

share|improve this question
    
To clarify: when you connect two monitors to it, do you wish to close the laptop lid so you're not viewing the laptop screen? Do you want to use 2 monitors plus the viewport for a total of 3 screens at the same time? –  Steve Dec 19 '11 at 13:33
    
I have the same docking station. I am able to use 2 monitors one to the DVI connection and the other to the VGA connection. –  Ramhound Dec 19 '11 at 13:33
    
He wants to use 3 monitors... –  Kyle Dec 19 '11 at 13:36
    
Steve: I updated my question at the end. Your latter sentence is what I want to achieve. –  oscilatingcretin Dec 19 '11 at 13:58
    
We have three of these laptops and also wanted to use two monitors, plus the laptop display to essentially have three displays. We could not make it work when running Windows 7. One of the guys decided to install KUbuntu instead of Windows and then he could have the three displays like we wanted and he just setup a VM for Windows. Seems like you should be able to make it work for Windows, but so far no luck. –  user190467 Jan 16 '13 at 16:41

2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Nope, this will not work with three monitors. I have an E6400 with the Dell docking station and it will not let me use more than two (including the built-in display). It's limited by the on board graphics controller per Dell Enterprise support. I have had this question asked a few times by users in my office with E6400's who would just like to use two monitors and the built-in display.

share|improve this answer
1  
We have lots of these and these docs can be wiggy for sure but yeah.. no dice on 3 monitors :( –  OG Chuck Low Dec 19 '11 at 16:40

It can be done by using one DVI, one DisplayPort and VGA port of the E/Port Plus docking station (or the HDMI, DisplayPort, and VGA ports without the docking station), provided your graphics card can handle it.

I have a Dell M6600 with an AMD FirePro M8900 graphics card. I used to have one Dell U3011 30" monitor in the middle, flanked by two Dell 1907FP monitors in portrait, with the lid of my M6600 closed. It worked beautifully.

Then, my U3011 cracked during an office move. When I tried to use three 1907FP monitors (DVI, DVI, VGA), I got no joy. I cannot run three displays at a time (laptop screen or not) without utilizing a DisplayPort. I need another monitor that has a DisplayPort jack. I tried using a passive DisplayPort male to DVI female adapter in tandem with a dual-link DVI cable, but still no luck. Perhaps an active adapter would work?

Update: April 30, 2013: My active DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter came in the male and it works perfectly. I now have all three Dell 1907FP monitors working at the same time (DVI, DisplayPort to DVI, VGA). The adapter I'm using is the Accell Ultra AV (model number B087B-007B) because the AMD website listed it as a suggested adapter for this purpose. Amazon for about $85. Expensive, but less expensive than a new monitor.

share|improve this answer
    
FYI: I have the 210W E/Port Plus docking station. The beefier power port is necessary for the beefy power brick that comes with my M6600 laptop/workstation. –  Gregory Apr 30 '13 at 21:20

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.