Laptop's Screen As a Second Monitor
March 7, 2009 9:52 AM   Subscribe

Is it possible to use my laptop's screen as a separate monitor?

I have a Dell XPS M1530 with Windows Vista Home Premium and a custom built desktop PC with Windows XP and Linux ( Ubuntu).

I don't have enough room to put a monitor on my laptop desk so is it possible to use my laptop's screen as a monitor for the desktop PC as well? If possible, how?
posted by Danniman to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Google will help you on this one...
posted by Bio11 at 10:05 AM on March 7, 2009

Yes and no. Synergy is what you want.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 10:34 AM on March 7, 2009

Synergy's not going to make the laptop work as a monitor for the desktop, it's just going to let you control the laptop with your desktop's mouse and keyboard. If that's what you want then Synergy is awesome, but otherwise I can't help.
posted by Dr. Send at 11:33 AM on March 7, 2009

Sure, you can use remote desktop or vnc to control the desktop from the laptop. No need to leave a monitor on the desktop once its configured. You can forget about 3D graphics like videogames. Even over 1gigabit ethernet there's a real bottleneck, but everything else works.
posted by damn dirty ape at 11:57 AM on March 7, 2009

Maxivista (from Bio11's link) works great and allows you to extend your desktop, not just control both.
posted by wongcorgi at 12:16 PM on March 7, 2009

yup, I've used Maxivista, spanned across 1 desktop and two laptops, works great for text and stuff... it does use the processing power of the client though - at least partially. I had trouble with video on the old machine (a PII 333 w/ 192mb ram running win 2000), but otherwise it worked fine.
posted by defcom1 at 2:32 PM on March 7, 2009

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