replace laptop LCD with desktop monitor

I have an HP nx5000 laptop with cracked LCD. My old computer. Daughter needs ANY computer at home. Can I completely remove the laptop cover/screen (so it is out of the way) and connect a desktop monitor I have lying around? Will the laptop operate without the LCD/cover attached at all?
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  1. It would probably operate with no lid, but you'd probably have a problem selecting the secondary (add-on) display as primary unless you could SEE the first screen.

    So you could probably set it up and remove the panel, but then what happens when you want to do maintanence? If the lappy reverts to the original display output, you won't be able to "see" to set up the secondary display again.
  2. Are you planning on using the laptop keyboard and pointer? I think you could get an external very cheaply. Then you could keep the lid closed and it wouldn't get in the way. You'd want to disable anything that would make the laptop auto-sleep when the cover is closed.
  3. Removing the screen and associated casing from a laptop is doable but it takes a bit of work.

    I can't remember the nx5000 off the top of my head but the general principles are the same.

    1. Remove the keyboard. Either the very easy 3 slide clips that are at the top of the keyboard or a couple of screws on the underside of the laptop (these are sometimes marked K or with a Keyboard symbol, some models also hide a screw under the battery although this is usually only for splitting the main case open).

    1a. A lot of laptop models require you to remove the top plastic cover that usually houses the power buttons etc before you can get to any screws holding the keyboard in from the top. This is either a case of gently prising it off but also be very careful that there are no mounting screws holding it in place (usually two if there is). General rule is check for screws in that area and remove them if you're unsure.

    2. If the laptop is wireless enabled you will need to remove one of the bottom covers (a simple 2 screws affair). You will see a small slot in card with two wires that are mounted by push on buttons. These are usually white and black. One of them labeled aux on the card. Release the wires and remove the card.

    3. Where the screen hinges (just above where the keyboard is) you should see two plastic hinge covers (about 1 inch in either side). Remove these either by prising or again one screw on the back of them. They can be fiddly to remove.

    4. You should now be able to see the metal hinges that hold the screen to the base of the laptop. On some models these hinges extend quite a way across the top of the laptop. You might have to remove some of the extra casing covering them. Just carefully trace whats in the way of the hinges and remove it. The hinges themselves are usually 2 or 3 pretty long and sturdy screws.

    5. Unhook any cables from the screen to the base of the laptop. Theres going to be at least three. One relatively fat and usually covered in nylon screening which is the main display drive. The other pair are for the wireless that you removed earlier. These can be routed all over the place you can either tuck them out of the way or pull them out very careully.

    You might also have some extra cabling for speakers and the like around the same area. Don't be scared to remove any fixing tape that holds the wires in place. Just be careful not to yank it and crack plastic/split anymore wires.

    6. Put it back together and enjoy some gaping holes where the screen used to be.

    A couple of VERY IMPORTANT things to note. Make a note of what screw came from where, laptops have annoying habits of using different length screws in different places. Put the wrong one back instead and enjoy the bang when you switch it on due to a screw penetrating the motherboard.

    If the screen has ellaborate hinges you may have to remove the hinge from the screen rather than the hinge from the laptop. If this is the case remove any rubber screw covers in the screen casing. This obviously exposes the screws holding the screen cover together. Remove these then gently prise open the screen casing to expose the innards (which will be one big screen and not a lot else).

    Also if you're lucky the laptop will autodetect the external screen and use it. Otherwise hope that your function key combo works.

    Oh and for something completely different, why not get a docking station for it. Plug the charger and screen into the docking station and you can use the keyboard/mouse from the laptop without any potentially worrying DIY.
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