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How to Set Up Your Laptop for Presentations on a Video Projector

It’s very important to be all set and ready when it’s your turn to make a presentation. No one wants to sit there waiting for minutes while you try to figure out how to get your laptop to work with this video projector. The following are instructions (written by Owen Rubin) that should help you setup your laptop to work with an external video projector. The summary is: bring your cables to hook your laptop up to an HDMI “monitor”, know exactly how to enable your laptop to display to an external video “monitor” (especially what magic keystrokes are necessary to turn that on and off), and try it out ahead of time to be sure.

If you have an iPad2 or iPhone4S we will have an AppleTV in the main room for presenting using Airplay mirroring. If you use iWork apps and use iCloud this makes it even easier for you to show your slides and videos.

Here are instructions for Macintosh and PCs running Windows and some ideas for other operating systems too.

How to set up your iOS device to work with the AppleTV in the Main Room

  • The AppleTV will be on the same network as the wifi network so it will should show up as an option for AirPlay and it will be called…. “AppleTV”
  • To transfer your Numbers, Keynote, or Pages documents, assuming you are on iOS5, from your Mac computer or laptop the easiest way is to use the icloud.com website. Basically you can just drag and drop your local document from your Mac to iCloud.com. See http://help.apple.com/icloud/index.html?lang=en#mm9d2051b9

How to set up your Macintosh to work with a video projector

  • Please connect your Macintosh to an external monitor to test this out BEFORE coming up to speak. Have your HDMI adapter cable ready as well.
  • Prior to speaking, open the System Preferences, and then select DISPLAYS. Click the small check box next to “Show displays in menu bar.” This will allow you to quickly set up your displays when connecting to the projector from a simple menu bar drop down rather than have to open the System Panel.
  • If you plan to use “mirroring” (what you see on your laptop is what you see on the projector) you should ideally select 1024x768, millions as the display resolution of your internal monitor before starting (if possible). This should make the projector happy when you connect. Other resolutions may or may not work. If you are using PowerPoint or KeyNote for your talk, you do not need to turn on mirroring, so the internal resolution can be anything you desire as the external and internal monitors display separate data in these programs.
  • When a second Monitor is connected, it should automatically redraw the internal monitor and add the new external monitor automatically. The mode in which it starts up in will be based on your last connection to a similar monitor. That means setting it up with an external monitor now should make the process go faster.
  • If your Mac did not detect the added monitor, you should select the Monitor drop-down in the menu bar and select “Detect Displays” to make it find the monitor. After that, the monitor should display. Once the monitor is connected, in the same menu drop-down, set the external display to 1024x768 (60 Hz). A confirmation dialog will appear on the external display (or both if mirroring is on), and you have 15 seconds to click “CONFIRM” to make these settings stick. Click CONFIRM to lock in these settings.
  • If you wish to mirror your displays, again, drop down the display menu item, and select Mirror Displays. No confirmation is needed once this is done. You may have to change the display resolution again if a previous setting had them set differently, but this can quickly be done from the same menu drop down. Again, select 1024x768.
  • It is suggested that you turn off all Screen Savers and Power Saving settings, both of which can be found in the System Preferences. Also, it is suggested that you bring your power supply, as this will make your presentation work more smoothly by preventing the computer from going to sleep or blanking the display
  • Testing: Sleep your machine with no monitor connected. Wake up the machine FULLY, and then attach your external monitor. It should immediately come up in the last known mode. If not, practice with the menu bar drop-down menu item for the monitors to be able to quickly switch to the proper modes.
  • When you arrive at the front of the room to speak, connect your monitor to the cable (BRING YOUR ADAPTERS FOR YOUR LAPTOP TO HDMI.) When the monitor switch is switched to display your Mac on the projector, it should detect the display and switch to the last known setting. Again, if this does not happen, select DETECT DISPLAYS from the drop-down menu item to make this happen. If any settings come up wrong, they can quickly be changed with this drop-down menu selections.
  • When done, disconnect the external monitor. From the display menu drop down, you can reselect your desired display resolution.

How to set up your PC running Windows to work with a video projector

Different versions of Windows may have different steps, but the following should be close enough to help you set up your machine to work with a video projector.

  • Please connect your PC to an external monitor to try this out BEFORE coming up to speak. Have your HDMI adapter cable ready as well if your Laptop needs one and bring it with you to the stage.
  • Connect the external monitor to the PC
  • On the Laptop display, RIGHT CLICK on the desktop and say Properties.
  • Click on the SETTINGS tap (far right) If you want your displays Mirrored, (what is on the internal display is on the projector) you should make sure the box next to ” Extend my Windows desktop into this monitor” is UNCHECKED. Some older systems have a “ mirroring” box, check that if you see it and want mirroring. If you do not want mirroring, skip the next section and continue with 5a below, then return to #8 of the section immediately below.
  • NOTE: The following steps apply if you are running your PC in MIRROR mode only. If, however, you’re running your PC in NON-MIRROR mode you need to continue with these special instructions instead.
  • Drag the screen slider to 1024x768 (if your laptop will let you.) Typically, the external monitor MAY limit this setting. If your screen display is higher, it might not display on the projector, so you might want to test this before you are ready to speak. Drag the color quality to Highest (32 bit) if available, or Medium (16 bit) if the first is not available.
  • Now, look at your keyboard. Typically, one of the function buttons will have the words CRT/LCD or perhaps a small picture of a monitor on it. Note this key for future use. On a Dell, it is typically F8. And I have seen it in F5 as well. Your machine’s keys will vary, but it should be there. Holding the FUNCTION KEY (FN), Press the proper function button ONCE and wait. After a few seconds, the second display should come on. Be patient, this can take up to 5 seconds. On the projector, it may take up to 10 seconds for the projector to detect your system and switch. Note: a second press of this function will (usually) switch to EXTERNAL monitor only. A third press will go INTERNAL only, and around the circle for each press after that. Also note that some laptops may do this sequence in a different order, so learn your system so you can quickly switch to the mode you want.
  • Click on the ADVANCED button. If “apply the new display settings without restarting” is not selected, select it. Under Screen Refresh Rate, select 60 Hz. Click APPLY and CONFIRM the choice. Click OK to close the ADVANCED dialog window. Close the Display Properties Dialog. You should now see a mirroring of your monitor on the second monitor
  • Testing: As a test, disconnect the second monitor, put your laptop to sleep. Wake it up and let it fully come up (log-in if necessary), and then reconnect the external monitor. On some machines, it should quickly display the screen in the last known setting (you may need to wait up to 10 seconds.) If it does not display correctly, press the monitor switching function key ONCE. Again, note that it may take up to 10 seconds to display, so be patient. If only the projector now displays, a few presses of the switching function key should bring it around to both displays again. If you cannot get the projector to display, recheck all your connections and settings stated above.
  • Note that when using the Projector, after pressing the Function key for the monitor change, it may take up to 10 seconds for the monitor to find and lock on to your machine. Just wait for it. Pressing the FUNCTION key again may simply mess up your settings or switch the projector off.
  • When you arrive at the front of the room to speak, connect your monitor to the display cable (BRING YOUR ADAPTERS FOR YOUR LAPTOP TO HDMI IF NEEDED.) When the monitor switch is switched to display your laptop on the projector, it should detect the display and just show up, but some systems will not automatically switch. Again, if this does not happen, you may need to press your display function key to switch on the external monitor.
  • A few more notes on this: Not all laptops work the same way, and there are some differences in Windows OS releases on the order of the switching functions. You should learn how yours works BEFORE you get to the stage. Also, I noted a difference between computers put to sleep before connected, and systems which have not been put to sleep. If the computer was connected to an external display, disconnected and then reconnected with no sleep in-between, the external monitor should should come right on when connected. However, on most of the systems I tested this on, if the laptop went to sleep between connections, it required using the switching function key to get the screens back on UNLESS the display was connected before waking the unit. On two Dell’s, pressing this key brought back the projector, but not the internal display, requiring two more presses of the key to get both displays on. Chalk it up to different hardware and software releases.
  • When done, disconnect the external monitor. From the display menu drop down, you can reselect your desired display resolution.

How to set up your Windows PC in NON-MIRROR mode to work with a video projector -

  • If you do NOT want mirrored displays (internal and external display different things), CHECK the box next to the line that says “Extend my Windows desktop into this monitor.” This SHOULD cause the external monitor to display a picture which is an EXTENSION of the current desktop.
  • In the Settings Dialog, the internal monitor will be displayed as a “1” and the external as a “2”. Click ONCE on the “2”.
  • With the “2” selected, drag the Screen Resolution slider left or right until the resolution reads “1024x768”. Also set the Color Quality to Highest (32 bit) if available, or Medium (16 bit) if the first is not available.
  • Click on the ADVANCED button. If “apply the new display settings without restarting” is not selected, select it.
  • Select the MONITOR tab. Under Screen Refresh Rate, select 60 Hz. Click APPLY and CONFIRM the choice. Click OK to close the ADVANCED dialog. Your system is now set for an extended desktop. When connected to the monitor, you MAY need to use the switching function key to once again turn on this option, but on the systems I tested, the extended desktop just came right up when the monitor was connected. Again, I suggested some testing with this mode to know how your laptop will perform when connected to an external display BEFORE coming up to speak.
  • Note that in this mode, items dragged to the extended desktop can be “lost” there if the external monitor is disconnected, as they live on the extended desktop which is no longer available. Also note that while the extended desktop is enabled, this ‘second’ desktop part may continue to live, meaning the cursor and object can be dragged off the screen to this area and not be viewable on a single internal monitor. To resolve this issue, right click on the desktop, select Properties, select Settings, click on the “2” box, and UNCHECK the extend option. Any items left on that extended desktop should now snap to the right edge of the internal screen.
  • When you arrive at the front of the room to speak, connect your monitor to the display cable (BRING YOUR ADAPTERS FOR YOUR LAPTOP TO HDMI IF NEEDED.) When the monitor switch is switched to display your laptop on the projector, it should detect the display and just show up, but some systems will not automatically switch. Again, if this does not happen, you may need to press your display function key to switch on the external monitor.
  • A few more notes on this: Not all laptops work the same way, and there are some differences in Windows OS releases on the order of the switching functions. You should learn how yours works BEFORE you get to the stage. Also, I noted a difference between computers put to sleep before connected, and systems which have not been put to sleep. If the computer was connected to an external display, disconnected and then reconnected with no sleep in-between, the external monitor should should come right on when connected. However, on most of the systems I tested this on, if the laptop went to sleep between connections, it required using the switching function key to get the screens back on UNLESS the display was connected before waking the unit. On two Dells, pressing this key brought back the projector, but not the internal display, requiring two more presses of the key to get both displays on. Chalk it up to different hardware and software releases.
  • When done, disconnect the external monitor. From the display menu drop down, you can reselect your desired display resolution.

How to set up laptops with other operating systems work with a video projector

  • Please set your resolution for an external monitors to 1024x768, 60 Hz.
  • PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE know your system well enough to know how to quickly switch on the external monitor when you get ready to speak. Please try this out before you come up to speak.
  • Not having a Unix or Linux system, I cannot help you here. If you plan to use such a system, practice before the conference with an external monitor. Connect and disconnect it. Sleep and wake, then reconnect it. Be sure you can quickly switch the external video on.

This was originally written by Owen Rubin, Glenn Tenney, with help from others.

conference.setup_laptop
Last modified: Oct. 25, 2018, 12:09 p.m. (2 years, 7 months ago)
Last edit reason: Topic "conference.setup_laptop" edited by shevek