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My monitor won’t display in color, the laptop displays in color but my external monitor shows up in black/white.

I have checked all cables.

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Have you checked the color settings on the monitor? – Michael K Jan 14 '13 at 14:45
Which video cable options does it have? Have you tried each of them to rule out bad cables/connectors? – Ben Brocka Jan 14 '13 at 15:00

VGA cables can sometimes have bad pins, I see you have checked cables but actually try swapping a different VGA cable to rule out bad pins / wires. If that doesn't help, start swapping monitors if you have access to a different one. Do you know this monitor worked in color before you attempted to use it on your laptop? If multiple cables and monitors show up in black and white we can narrow it down to a video card / driver problem.

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