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I have a laptop that runs Vista Mega Ultimate Amazing for Business 64-bit.

When at work, I connect a monitor via USB (which totally rocks) to the "left" of the laptop monitor. It's identified as monitor 3.

At home, I use an old CRT monitor that sits to the right of the laptop monitor. It's monitor 2.

Monitor 1 is, of course, the inbuilt laptop monitor.

Now at home I open a window, any window, on monitor 2. Then I come to work and plug in monitor 3. Anything I had open on monitor 2 is now stuck in unretrievable land. (Actually, it's probably anything that was minimised when I left home that belonged on monitor 2 will expand back onto monitor 2, even though it's disconnected)

How can I get those windows back onto connected monitors?

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related question (for dialogs with no entry on the taskbar): – yhw42 Sep 12 '10 at 4:08
up vote 41 down vote accepted

You still get the icon for the app down in your taskbar, yes? If so, select the icon for the app and hit ⎇ alt+space and then M. That'll select Move for that window. Now use your keyboard arrow to move the window in the proper direction to the active monitor.

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Once you have hit at least on arrow key to start the move, you can them use the mouse for the rest, which unless the resolution of the screen that isn't present is small is usually a bit quicker. – David Spillett Jan 20 '10 at 0:33
That's a really good point, David. I had tried to test out my answer as I was typing it up, but I had to simulate by almost moving a window of the screen since I'm on a single monitor at the moment :-) – Chris_K Jan 20 '10 at 1:42
Thanks guys. The keyboard hint was all I was missing. Cheers! – RickMeasham Jan 21 '10 at 1:45
You, Sir, are a hero. Thanks! – Bjørn Sep 6 '13 at 14:58
Thank you man :) – val kharitonashvili Nov 10 '14 at 16:48

When you load the app/program, the focus is on the program even though you cant see it. Then use the windows-key and left/right arrow to move the window across (windows snap). Thats what I do :)

  • This only works in windows 7 and later
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+1 for the actual solution. The solution given by by Chris_K works, but is terribly slow. Pressing a key two to four times is just waaaays faster. – MainMa Apr 10 '12 at 18:17
Why exactly are we approving Anonymous edits? Adding a statement like "this only works for Windows 7" changes the answer drastically. – Ramhound Mar 22 at 20:23

For Windows 7 if you turn off one monitor you can move the application over to the current active screen by using the following quick keys (depends on which side your monitor was originally on).

Press either ⊞ Win+ or ⊞ Win+

The above is actually normally used for moving a window on the current monitor to either side of the current display but works well when a program is lost on a detached monitors desktop. This trick will bring the active screen to its current desktops left or right side half but, since there is no desktop, it moves it to the current active desktop.

If your monitor is still attached you can use ⊞ Win+⇧ Shift+ or ⊞ Win+⇧ Shift+ to move a window from screen to screen (this will not work if the monitor is not attached).

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right click on the taskbar button of the program, select Move, then use the arrow key to move window. - this works in earlier versions of Windows but not Windows 7.

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You should press Windows-P and adjust connected projectors.

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In Windows 7, maximizing the window in question and then clicking and holding from top, dragging the windows to another position worked for me.

This action restored the windows to their original size.

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Alt + Spacebar to display the properties of the Window and arrow down to Move then use left or right arrow to move the Window to where you need it to be.

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Go to screen resolution and where it says "change the appearance of your displays", grab your secondary monitor and move it on the other side and hit ok. When you maximize the program it will show up on your secondary monitor now.

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I'm using windows 10 and non of the above suggestions worked. However, I did manage to get all windows on the active display again by pressing ⊞ Win+d twice, which is the shortcut to show the desktop (and minimize all on screen windows). So, pressing once shows the desktop, then pressing again will open all windows again. That seemed to do the trick for some reason.

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doesn't work on windows 10 – rofrol May 25 at 20:38

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