External Monitor, NC4200 Notebook & HP advanced dockingstation issues

Posted on 2006-04-14
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
The current setup is HP NC4200 notebook, HP advanced docking station, HP monitor stand & Planar PL1700 17" LCD. I have 4 users on identical setup.

My problem is when docking the notebook 90% of the time the desktop will not show up on the external monitor. I can't figure out why. Here is what I've done so far:

1. Change power settings so when user closes lid it does nothing
2. Went into HW profile and selected "This laptop is docked"
3. HP support just says press Function+F4. DRRRR thanks for nothing, but the notebook is in a monitor stand, theres no opening the lid.

So I'm out of options at this point that I can think of. Any other options or ideas would be greatly appreciated.
Question by:mgooder
    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    Check the BIOS. Some notebooks have settings in there where you have to make the external display active. Look for a setting so that both internal and external displays are active at the same time.

    If that doesn't help, look for another video card driver.
    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    Here's a possibility.
    For lack of a better description I've had monitors that get 'stuck' if they are on with no signal for too long.
    If the monitor is sitting there powered on when there is no laptop in the dock, then you put in a laptop, then it's possible the LCD has 'decided' there is no signal and it's not looking for one anymore.
    The answer is to power cycle the LCD.
    Revise your procedures to turn off the LCD when there's no laptop in the dock and turn it on after you put the laptop in.

    Author Comment

    I will look into both of these solutions when I can get a hold of a setup.

    Author Comment

    I think I have the issue resolved. I downloaded the latest intel video drivers and so far so good. I haven't had anymore help calls on the issue 1 day later.

    Author Comment

    UPDATE: Loading the newest drivers didn't resolve the problem.

    It looks like everytime I dock the laptop, it loads 2 plug in play monitors (device manager), but when you undock it doesn't ever release. So when you redock it loads another 2 plug in play monitors. I'm wondering if this is causing the issue or not.
    LVL 26

    Accepted Solution

    The problem is procedural.

    You are supposed to shutdown a laptop before placing it in or removing it from a dock.
    Now you know one of the reasons why...
    Monitors are not a "Hot Swap" item as far as Windows goes.
    You need to have the OS run through the start-up sequence to update the configuration when you change it.
    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

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