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I have 2 Monitors and use the extended option for them. I have a Nintendo Switch as well, which I connected with an HDMI-switch to one of the monitors.

The problem is, when I change the device for the monitor, Windows 10 notices it and changes to a single desktop. This makes some programs stop displaying graphics and clusters all of my windows over each other.

Is there a way to keep the second monitor active in Windows 10, even if I switch?

Note: I don't want the content of the deactivated monitor displayed anywhere, I just want it to keep its content for when I switch back.

2 Answers 2

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I believe there is a pin #19 called hotplug-detect in most HDMI (and DisplayPort) ports which allows monitors to tell OS to keep 'alive' even when you turn off the monitor with the power button (but still powered via wall socket).

More info about hotplug.

It appears your HDMI switch does not do the hotplug-detect thing the way a regular monitor does. I did not personally find any software work-around for this. However there is a way to hack an HDMI cable to block the pin #19 to avoid sending the disconnect signal. Either strip the wire and cut the one going to pin #19, or rip out the pin, or put some tiny tape over the pin. WARNING: you might break the cable or port.

Safer way: This guy sells a neat little adapter that does the job called Monitor Detect Killer (MDK). I actually used a couple of the MDKs a few years ago and they really do work if that's what you are looking for. Check the demo video on his site to see if its what you aim.

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Hey I know it's been a while since this was asked, but that "Jerry-rig" idea? 😱😱😱!!! Here's what you need: an EDID emulator, easiest to do with hardware these days, but also check your graphics card--- AMD FirePro and Radeon Pro, among others, provide this feature in their display config.

What does it do? It makes Windows think your monitor is ALWAYS plugged in and turned on! You can then turn it off or even disconnect it (leaving the emulator plugged in, of course) and Windows won't change a bloody thing! Hope this helps. -Sandesh

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