How To Use Your Laptop As A Monitor

Whether you want to use your laptop screen as your sole monitor or you want to use it to extend a display, you can do plenty with it.

However, the process might not be as easy as you would assume. After all, the majority of laptops on the market only have an output port for displaying what is on the screen to an external device.

Therefore, simply grabbing an HDMI, DVI, or Display Port cable and running it from another PC to your laptop isn’t going to work to use your laptop as a monitor.

That being said, there are certain ways you can get it to work and not all of them are going to be overly complicated. Below, we will be going over different ways you can go about doing it.

How To Turn Your Laptop Into A Monitor:

Method 1: Use Miracast (For Windows)

Luckily, Microsoft built-in Miracast to the Windows operating system. Because of this, you can use Miracast to effectively use your laptop’s screen as a mirrored monitor, this will depend on what kind of laptop you are using. However, you do have to set it up before you can get it working.

If You Want To Use Your Laptop As A Monitor

  • Go To “Search” > Type in “Projection Settings” > Change drop-down menu to “OK” > Setup PIN for pairing

If You Want To Use Your PC Display On Your Laptop’s Screen

  • Go To “Search” > Type in “Connect” > Click on Laptop You Want To Use With Miracast > Accept the Connection On Your Laptop (enter the PIN)

If You Want To Use Your Laptop As A Second Display/Monitor

  • Type in “Display Settings” in Search > Choose “Extend Desktop To This Display” > Configure the Displays As You Wish

Once you do this, you should be able to get started with projecting either your Android phone, tablet, or even another compatible computer to your screen.

Keep in mind, not every device is going to be compatible with Miracast just because it is built into the operating system. The hardware needs to support it.

It requires a display adapter that supports Windows Display Driver Model 1.3 and a Wi-Fi adapter that is capable of supporting Wi-Fi Direct. If your laptop has this, you will be able to utilize the Miracast functionality in order to use your laptop as a monitor.

Method 2: Remote Desktop

This is another good option that you can use if you are looking to use your laptop’s screen as a monitor.

This won’t work as well for watching or viewing media, but it can work perfectly for those looking to do some work on their laptop. There are multiple ways you can end up using Remote Desktop as there are different software and methods for doing it.

Google Remote Desktop

  • This might be the easiest way to start using your laptop as a display. To use Google Remote Desktop, it is very simple to get started.
  • To get started head over to https://remotedesktop.google.com/ on the computer you will be accessing.
  • From there, click on Set Up Remote Access on that computer and enter a PIN.
  • Then, you will head over to your laptop and go to the same website and you should be able to enter your PIN and get started.

Team Viewer

  • This is another remote desktop option that you have available.
  • This is a 3rd party application that you will be using to connect to the computer you are trying to access on your laptop’s screen.
  • To get started head over to https://www.teamviewer.com/.
  • You will need to install it on each of the systems that you are looking to use it on.
  • From there, you can set up an account and enter the appropriate details.
  • From your laptop, you should enter your ID and connect to your other computer.

Method 3: Space Desk

  • This is another third-party tool that you can use to effectively use your laptop as a monitor.
  • In order to use this, you will want to head over to Space Desk’s official website to download the application.
  • You will then need to download the Space Desk Viewer Software for Secondary Machine on your laptop.
  • You will be able to use this with either an iPhone or an iPad if you are looking to showcase that content on your laptop.
  • To use it, you need to have both of the devices located on the same Wi-Fi or LAN.
  • Then, you simply head over to your laptop and run the application.
  • Your computer should be listed on the application under “Network Search.”
  • From there, you click Connect and you should be connected within seconds.

Why Would You Want To Use Your Laptop As A Monitor or Secondary Screen?

There are all kinds of reasons you might want to use your laptop’s screen as a monitor or secondary screen.

1. Enhance Productivity

For some, it can enhance productivity. While you might be at your desk, having your laptop closed while displaying on an external monitor seems like a waste.

Instead, you can open the clam-shell and leverage your beautiful laptop screen as a secondary and extended display. This can give you more landscape to be productive with.

2. Play Games

If you are someone who likes to play games, you might be interested in taking advantage of being able to stream directly from your powerful PC to
your couch while using your laptop’s screen as a display.

You can do this with various software like Steam Link or even Moonlight. The setup process is straight forward with each.

3. Enhance Portability

You are going to be able to be much more portable and flexible when you are using your laptop as a display device over your desktop monitor. Therefore, you can do things around your home or workplace instead of being glued to your desk.

Overall, there are so many different reasons you might want to use your laptop as either your sole monitor or as a second monitor. By trying out the various methods mentioned above, you should be able to find the right method for your use-case.