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Resolve your Multi-Monitor Issues with Win8 CP

Last response: in Windows 8
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April 19, 2012 2:12:04 PM

OK, see if this has happened to you:

You're rocking a multi-monitor system and you go to install Win8 CP. The initial setup process goes nice and smooth and you're already drooling. The system tells you that it has to reboot to finish and does so. BUT...instead of opening up to the initial personalization screen, all you see is a sea of black!

WHAT THE %$%@???

Well here's how you can fix this without having a coronary or cursing MS- simply disconnect all other extra monitors! It's really that simple!

So how do I know this? Am I some senior-level programmer at MS or NVIDIA or AMD? Hardly. But it happened to me, and boy was I peeved when I figured it out! :) 

You see, I have XFX's 6950, modded to run as the 6790, a Dell U2410 for my primary display, and a Panasonic 46" plasma for a secondary. The Dell is connected via DVI and the plasma via HDMI (and I think that might be part of the problem- maybe the OS is using HDMI as the primary connector as a default and the others are secondary- my Dell is ALWAYS identified as monitor 2).

I ran through the install process on a separate partition (dual booting with Win7 Pro x64), and everything was going butter-smooth until that reboot and nothing happened. I could tell something was going on so I let it sit there for several hours, figuring this was some issue with a BETA OS (and people, please remember that- THIS IS A BETA AND NOT EVERYTHING IS GOING TO WORK RIGHT-OFF THE BAT- BE PATIENT!).

Well after a while, I had enough and started from scratch. I checked the checksum for the ISO file, reformatted the USB drive (I used the Win7 DVD install tool from MS), deleted, re-created, and re-formatted the partition I was using for Win8, and began again...same results. I could hear the drives performing tasks and when I pressed keys on the keyboard and clicked the mouse, I could hear the PC responding, but still saw nothing.

This is when I got the suspicion that the output was being sent to the plasma (which I rarely use for a secondary display). I changed the TV input to the HDMI channel for the PC, and guess what?

Yup- Win8 was defaulting to the PLASMA! WTH?!? :) 

So, I merely disconnected the plasma from the GPU and the output went to the LCD as it should. After finishing the Win8 install, I installed the new AMD Catalyst Control Center (CCC) app.

BUT...

For whatever reason, multi-monitor support is still pretty buggy in the CP...for instance, I would play a DVD in WMP and send that output to the plasma while using my LCD for browsing and other PC work. Now, I can't do this (especially with WMC)...I can get the full-screen on the plasma, but the cursor is 'stuck' over there and won't come over to the other side (monitor).

I hope this helps!






a b C Monitor
April 19, 2012 2:39:57 PM

wait for the RC
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April 19, 2012 3:36:41 PM

alvine said:
wait for the RC


Not totally clear on your reply, so...

I agree that the CP is nothing more than a (admittedly well-executed) BETA and it's going to have issues (as I mentioned earlier). I also agree that the RC should have resolved almost all of the issues of the CP. Furthermore, there might even be a RC2 before going RTM, but I doubt it.

That being said, and while I am dual-booting with Win7, I am using Win8 CP x64 as my sole OS and in desktop mode and, other than a few issues with IE10 and the cursor and some software that won't install, I am pleased as punch with it and am strongly reconsidering my earlier decision about not switching to it (from Win7), when it comes out.

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a b C Monitor
April 19, 2012 3:42:19 PM

A nicely balanced examinations of some issues with '8. have heard of exactly the same symptoms about year ago from someone else. Couldn't have been 8 though. But HDMI might have been to blame, DRM maybe.
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April 19, 2012 3:52:28 PM

13thmonkey said:
A nicely balanced examinations of some issues with '8. have heard of exactly the same symptoms about year ago from someone else. Couldn't have been 8 though. But HDMI might have been to blame, DRM maybe.


Could be. When I started rocking a 2-display system, Win7 was already well into its RTM cycle, so any similar issues (if any), were solved by then.

BTW, I am connecting the plasma with a 25' HDMI cable! And I got it for about $30 at www.monoprice.com. If any of you EVER need cabling of any kind, y'all really owe it to yourselves to go there first and last! Heck, I don't even bother making my own patch cables anymore because I can get a high-quality 10' Cat6 cable for about a $1.50!

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a b C Monitor
a b * Windows 8
April 19, 2012 4:02:09 PM

I have had the same problem with Windows 7. It seems Windows always defaults the primary monitor to my 50" plasma. I have 3 Asus 27" LED/LCD monitors and a Panasonic 50" plasma 3D and after a new install Windows will always set the plasma as primary.
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April 19, 2012 4:34:23 PM

Well it seems we've uncovered an interesting Windows habit here. I wonder if the GPU itself has any say in the matter or is it Windows making these decisions?

If y'all could, please list what you're rockin' and how you're connecting...

GPU: XFX 6950 (->6970)
D1: Dell U2410 via DVI
D2: Panasonic 46" plasma via HDMI

My system says that the Dell is screen 2 when the plasma is connected.

BTW- ATI CCC wants to report that the Dell is monitor 1 and the Panasonic is monitor 2- just the complete opposite of what Windows is doing!
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