Some time ago, my graphics adapter randomly started to behave very weird. I was at work when suddenly my computer did what happens when you unplug a HDMI cable from your pc (going black for a split second and then reorganizing the screen). I found this very weird, so I did some research. After messing around I suddenly saw the following:

enter image description here

So... 4 extra screens popped up out of nowhere! Also when I look at my device manager I see this:

enter image description here

which is Dutch, it says "generic non-PnP monitor/screen" and "generic PnP monitor/screen". I am working from my laptop with one external screen (so two screens in total). Also, when I plug in a hdmi cable, sometimes the external screen doesn't work when I put it the screen settings on "duplicate screen" but then it only works when I put it on "external screen only". Who knows what's going on? I already did a driver update and restarted my laptop several times, even took out the battery.


I reinstalled my Intel HD Graphics driver but I still get 4 extra screens. Hope someone can help since it bothers me a lot!

Edit 2

I accepted h3rat's answer for now because that made me get rid of the random extra monitors! Still weird, and if anyone actually knows what causes this problem I'm glad to hear! What I did was delete my new Intel graphics drivers (both from my installed programs and in the graphics adapters section in device manager), installed the older version as noticed by h3rat. After that the monitors were still there, I deleted them in control panel, restarted again and sicne then they don't pop up anymore and everything seems to be fine. Would still like to have an answer why this actually happens!

Edit 3

Aaand they randomly popped back again. Still looking for a solution!

Edit 4

I downloaded the Intel driver updater tool (http://intel.ly/1JSiYxj) and there were two new display drivers available which I installed. Immediately after that the gost monitors were gone which is great!

  • Have you tried to delete the displays? – Ramhound Nov 3 '16 at 19:10
  • @Ramhound yes and then they just pop back up after a while – Markinson Nov 3 '16 at 19:26
  • I believe that Windows updated the intel driver again. – hysterical Dec 5 '16 at 10:40

Try reinstalling the Intel HD Graphics driver to older version specifically -- https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_10-performance/windows-10-multiple-non-existent-screens/541f1815-de00-47a2-b638-5c0a6fdb01a4

| improve this answer | |
  • Using the Intel Driver Utility (intel.ly/1JSiYxj) and installing the latest of everything did the job. Thanks for the tip for installing other drivers though! – Markinson Dec 7 '16 at 7:28
  • I had all kinds of multi monitor nonsense happening as well, and this driver fixed it. Split screens 1/3 2/5, but only 1 monitor hooked up. Thanks! – Mike_K May 8 '17 at 0:00
  • 1
    Three years later and this still hasn't been fixed in more recent drivers +1. Also, installing this driver seems to be a hassle too. If anyone sees this: download the driver as .zip (extract) and go do devicemanager -> right-click Intel(R) HD Graphics xxxx -> properties -> update driver -> pick your own -> let me pick -> have disk -> browse -> locate your folder where you saved the drivers. Go to the Graphics folder, there you will find igdlh32/64.inf. Pick -> install – Joel Jan 30 '19 at 9:24

I had the same issue, which I previously attributed to connecting to various TVs in different meeting rooms. However, it appears to be related to Hyper-V; when I removed Hyper-V from the system the problem was immediately fixed.

| improve this answer | |
  • Have same issue on a laptop which doesn't have Hyper-V enabled. Still suspect connecting to various external monitors/projectors – abatishchev Jan 24 '18 at 4:54

I disabled all my Generic non-Pnp screens in device manager and made sure my windows was in PC screen only mode (fn + F8 on my dell pc, brings up the black sidebar on the right, don't know what it ). Then i went to the display settings and tried getting it to display only on display 1 with the help of the dropdown. I had to try a few times since it was acting completely random... Once they were all seperated i could select my display 2 and set it to extend. Pressed apply and all was good again... Hope it can help you :)

| improve this answer | |
  • Doesn't work unfortunately. "Phantom screens" just pop right back up :( – Markinson Nov 4 '16 at 9:17
  • they do keep poping up but you can make it work on the screens that actually exist :) – Gerty Nov 7 '16 at 7:51

I updated to the latest HD Graphics 4600 driver which, at my time, is version Because I have a Lenovo T540p with a combined NVIDIA Optimus thing, I had to follow the instructions to force install the driver because it was refusing to install over the existing, outdated, broken, Lenovo-provided one.

| improve this answer | |

Chiming in to mention that for me this issue was directly related to Hyper-V as well. Disabling Hyper-V removed all ghost monitors and allowed me to connect properly to external displays once again.

| improve this answer | |

I had a similar issue when I connected my laptop to an external screen via a USB box (a box where you plug in a single USB into your laptop and the box connects your laptop to multiple things, monitors, keyboard, mouse, internet, etc.).

This box allows for multiple monitor connections and there was both a VGA and a Displayport in there. Removing the VGA, which was plugged in but not connected to any monitor, made the ghost monitor disappear.

| improve this answer | |

Any one of these 4 simple fixes should help:

  1. Clean your Monitor cable
  2. Make sure another cable isn't pressing against your monitor cable
  3. Replace monitor cable
  4. Make sure there aren't any type of magnets near your computer (yes this is a real thing we use to mess with co-workers by putting one of those magnet things that hold paper clips near their monitor)
| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    What do you mean under the first step - clean monitor cable? Please add detailed info to your answer. – alljamin Mar 16 '17 at 23:33

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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