I regularly use an external monitor with my laptop. Today, when I booted up, the external monitor refused to work--it just keeps going into power save mode. I tried a different external monitor and had the same problem, so it must be a problem with the laptop itself.

Things I've tried:

  • Going into the Display Settings via the Control Panel (I'm running Vista) and attaching/unattaching/reattaching the external monitor.
  • Turning the computer off, unplugging, plugging it back in, and rebooting
  • Blowing into the VGA out to get rid of any dust
  • Toggling through the Fn+F7 options

I'm thinking maybe this is an issue with my video card? If necessary, I'm comfortable opening up my laptop and playing around with things, but I'm not sure what to look for.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

  • 1
    What brand of laptop? Did anything happen to it recently that might have caused this? – SLaks Apr 19 '10 at 0:59
  • you suspect the video card... any graphics-related symptoms in the main LCD screen? – quack quixote Apr 19 '10 at 1:11
  • In answer to the three question: (1) It is a Sony VAIO, (2) Nothing has happened recently that I would suspect could be the cause, (3) No symptoms on the LCD right now. – Jack7890 Apr 19 '10 at 1:22
  • I have the same problem with a Toshiba NB100. I do not regularily use the VGA port though. But it has already suffered two falls and survived both. – sinni800 Apr 19 '10 at 6:56

If you open it up, you'll want to visually inspect the VGA port's connections to the motherboard. The port could have become partially detached, and unable to transmit the full signal anymore -- this is possible over time with any heavily-used connectors, and especially if the laptop has suffered a fall or other impact. Repairs could be a simple application of solder.

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