Is there a way to turn off the display in Windows (7), preferably without using additional software?

Powershell script works fine, but leaves command-line window after turning on the display.

  • 2
    You have an existing ps1 script? They don't usually leave the window open after running. Perhaps there's something in the script that needs to be changed to let the window close? Aug 10 '11 at 13:16
  • 1
    How about using the blank screen saver plus setting your power settings to turn off the monitor after some period of non-use?
    – uSlackr
    Aug 10 '11 at 13:47
  • 4
    also if you may paste the ps script here - it will be useful for us visitors Oct 10 '12 at 19:27
  • Put PowerShell command from below answers in a file, save as .ps1, chose default app to open with as powershell, create a shortcut for it, go to the properties of the shortcut and set up a key combination to trigger it. this key combination will work from anywere. Jul 11 at 0:51
  • might have to place the shortcut in C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Accessories for the shortcut keystore to work. Jul 11 at 1:00

On a laptop you can use the keyboard shortcut combination of Fn+F7 (F7 might differ depending on the laptop model) and for a desktop you can always use the power button.

Do you need any other specifications such as wake up on mouse movement or something else?

You can always create a shortcut and assign a keyboard shortcut to a black screensaver, use this path:

%systemroot%\system32\scrnsave.scr /s

This will not turn off you screen but make it completely black

  • 2
    I have desktop and as far as I know it is not possible to set power button to turn off display. Wake up on mouse movement or keyboard key is fine. Black screensaver leaves glow, which is visible at night.
    – unicoio
    Aug 10 '11 at 12:21
  • 3
    @unicoio If it's to turn off the screen for the whole night why don't you use the power button on the screen itself?
    – Greg
    Aug 10 '11 at 13:04
  • 1
    I arrived at this question over three whole steps, literal strides. Your screensaver answer was exactly what I needed. My LCD TV treats solid complete black as off.
    – Motes
    Mar 26 '14 at 2:57
  • 1
    What's /s for, it works without the switch as well.
    – user373230
    Oct 2 '16 at 23:29
  • 3
    In Windows 10, screen gets black when scrnsave.scr is entered in the search box or in run dialog, but it requires /s when executed from cmd.exe (without it, a dialog pops up informing that this screensaver has no configurable options).
    – Palec
    Jun 8 '17 at 1:22

A couple more options:

  • Turn Off LCD - just place the executable on your desktop
  • NirCmd - you'll need to copy nircmd.exe to your Windows system directory, or add its location to the PATH environment variable. Then just run nircmd monitor off from the command line. More information at the link.
  • 13
    +1 for nircmd. Imho tools set from Nir Sofer and Russinovich should be installed on any advanced user's PC. Apr 20 '15 at 20:11
  • I have tools from Russinovich but this is the first time I've heart of Nir Sofer. Looks cool
    – Luigi
    Nov 5 '16 at 13:14
  • nircmd and Turn off LCD will somehow turn back screen on after exactly 5mins on Windows 10.
    – Cerlancism
    Aug 16 '20 at 20:26

You can use WinAPI call SendMessage(HWND_BROADCAST, WM_SYSCOMMAND, SC_MONITORPOWER, 2) where HWND_BROADCAST = 0xFFFF, WM_SYSCOMMAND = 0x0112 and SC_MONITORPOWER = 0xF170. The 2 means the display is being shut off.

There are several ways to make the call:

  • Separate executable. You can fire it through a script, command line, Run window, shortcut (*.lnk), etc. Note that shortcuts can be invoked using a keyboard shortcut. The executable may be written in C or C++, or via P/Invoke in .NET languages (C# or PowerShell), or in many other languages that have a foreign language interface (e.g. JNI in Java).

  • AutoHotkey script. For a non-programmer, this way is probably simpler. Making customizations still requires some scripting. This script turns monitor off on Win + M:

    Sleep 1000
    SendMessage, 0x112, 0xF170, 2,, Program Manager

Note the timeout before the SendMessage call in the AutoHotkey script. It gives the user a chance to release keys (in case their release would wake up the monitor again). Do not forget about it even when making the call from a script in another language.

For more info, see the documentation of SendMessage function, WM_SYSCOMMAND message and AutoHotkey SendMessage. It might be of interest that since Windows 8, using the same method to turn monitor on does not work, but there is a work-around.

  • For the AutoHotkey method, I would recommend using a Sleep 50 after SendMessage instead of this long sleep before. This has the effect of turning off the screen immediately. Tested on my own laptop and found it to be better.
    – cyqsimon
    Aug 17 '20 at 18:25

Powershell one-liner would be:

(Add-Type -MemberDefinition "[DllImport(""user32.dll"")]`npublic static extern int SendMessage(int hWnd, int hMsg, int wParam, int lParam);" -Name "Win32SendMessage" -Namespace Win32Functions -PassThru)::SendMessage(0xffff, 0x0112, 0xF170, 2)
  • 3
    This was close, but didn't work for me (Win10). However I put this into a .bat file and it worked: powershell (Add-Type '[DllImport(\"user32.dll\")]^public static extern int SendMessage(int hWnd, int hMsg, int wParam, int lParam);' -Name a -Pas)::SendMessage(-1,0x0112,0xF170,2)
    – Kidquick
    Dec 15 '20 at 3:04
  • 1
    Well adapted! I'm a PowerShell user and would run from a .ps1-file. Running unsigned PowerShell-scripts isn't enabled by default, so your solution will work for all. Dec 15 '20 at 10:05
  • This does not work on my Windows 10 20H2 computer. The one-liner will hibernate the entire computer. Same problem with NirCMD. The one-liner and NirCMD work on Windows 7 computer.
    – JPX
    Jan 13 at 15:26
  • On my Win10 20H2 running above single-liner in PowerShell Core 7.1 does turn off display as it did in previous versions. It does not hibernate my computer. Jan 13 at 19:13
  • 1
    @CeePlusPlus Kidquick's script is exactly the same when compensated for missing names for arguments and -1 vs 0xffff. Feb 11 at 15:55

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