I have a Gateway 500s. I bought it in October of 2002. I does what I need it to do. I have a Gateway 20" monitor, thats about 2 years old. My daughter has a Samsung 731B 17" monitor she gave me. I was wanting to conect both to computer. I'm guessing I will need a duel video driver. Is it possible with an older machine? If so what would I need to do it?
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try only connect Monitor and keyboard, and check for booting (disconnect all the rest (HDD, CD DRIVE, Sound Card, Network Card, ....) then try connect one by one and always off to change hardware config.
If dont work with monitor and keyboard, try reset bios(jumper),check again, then replace memory modules (must be compatible to new motherboard), evan dont work, send back the motherboard for defective motherboard.
On your laptop make sure you switch the dual mode view on your laptop, if you installed your video driver correctly right click on desktop, select there option switching into dual view or extended view, alternative is hold down the FN button or your laptop keyboard and press the Fucntions key (look for the function key with the monitor icon) press and release it while holding the FN key until there is a video on your external VGA monitor.
If the settings on your laptop is ready for dual or extended view, look for the SOURCE button or your monitor, if not available look for the AUTO button, pressing the Auto button automatically searches the available signal on the VGA, HDMI, or other sources of video on your monitor.
Try tapping the F8 key while booting the computer, you will get the start up menu, choose safe mode, when you log on, go to the display settings, that is right click on the desktop, properties, screen saver, advanced and make sure that hibernation is off, along with turn off disks or whatever , probably see turn off monitor after XX minutes, I make ours 15 minutes (150 computers and servers), I don't let the disks turn off. Choose always on also, not home/office. Try this and see if these settings help.
This computer uses a PCIe-16 slot, so any half-height dual-monitor card with DVI would do for you. The XFX Geforce 7200GS with 256MB memory has dvi and vgb outputs. It supports the resolution of your 20" Syncmaster, and is around $40 at Newegg.com at this time.