Why dvi monitor did not work on vga output on lap top

I used a vga to dvi adaptor from the back of my dell laptop and ran a dvi cable from there to the back of my hdtv. It didn't work radio shack employee suggested that I use a vga to vga cable and place the vga to dvi adaptor to the hdtv side. What do you think?
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  1. I think that won't accomplish anything, a VGA cable only extends the VGA port, it wouldn't do anything.

    Are you using an adapter or a converter? An adapter would simply be re-routing the analog VGA pins to their corresponding wires in the DVI cable. DVI has pins reserved for analog VGA data, which is why a DVI-to-VGA adapters work so well, unfortunately, you are trying to go the other way. An adapter doesn't turn your analog VGA signal into a digital DVI signal, it just moves the pins around. I'm guessing your TV is NOT looking for an Analog Signal coming in on its DVI port, but that is all its getting from your adapter.

    A converter, on the other hand, will take your analog VGA signal and convert it to a digital DVI signal. These are considerably more expensive ($100+ typically).

    Look at your TV's DVI input, the DVI cable you are using, and the output of the VGA-to-DVI adapter. What do the pins look like? You can compare to this image here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:DVI_Connector_Types.svg

    If the cable is missing the 4 pins surrounding the long-flat pin, it won't handle analog data (if the pins are also missing from your TV's input port, same deal).

    If the converter has the 4 pins surrounding the flat-pin, good bet is that it's just an adapter and its trying to redirect the analog signal.

    What model of TV are you trying to connect to, and do you have a model or part number for the adapter, this info will help with follow up if you need it.
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