Changing resolution when "Apply" button is inaccessible!

Posted on 2006-04-26
Last Modified: 2013-12-28
Hello, and help!
   Am putting together an old computer (too old!) for someone. I've set the resolution at 800 by 600, but find this won't do. When I go to Settings for the Display (in the Control Panel), however, the window is so large that I cannot see the OK or Apply button: they're below the bottom of the screen. And cannot drag the window up 'above' the top of the screen to get to these buttons.
   A nightmare.

Question by:BobFilak
    LVL 14

    Accepted Solution

    Have you tried just hitting the Enter key?  That should be the same as clicking OK.

    "Alt-A" appears to be the shortcut key for Accept.

    If that doesn't work, try
    Shift+Tab (moves highlight to tabs at the top of the window)
    Shift+Tab (moves highlight to Accept button)
    Spacebar ("clicks" Accept button)
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment


    Scroll over the following text and copy it.
    Paste into Notepad and add two blank lines after the last line of text
    Save as QuickRes.TXT to somewhere like your desktop.
    (the name isn't important, but at least you'll remember what it is for).
    Right-Click the .TXT file and choose "Rename".
    Change the .TXT file extension to .REG and click away in a blank area of the desktop.
    Accept the warning about changing file types.
    Now Right-Click on "QuickRes.REG" and choose "Merge".
    Accept the prompts asking if you want to write the data to the registry.
    Now shut down and reboot.
    You will have a new icon in your system tray that you can right-click on to change the resolution quickly.

    ----------- start of text to copy (DON'T copy this line) ----------
    "Taskbar Display Controls"="RunDLL deskcp16.dll,QUICKRES_RUNDLLENTRY"

    ---------- end of text to copy (DON'T copy this line) ------------

    If you ever wish to permanently get rid of or or temporarily disable this system tray icon from launching when you start Windows, just do either of the following (respectively):

    Open Display Properties on the "Settings" tab and click the "Advanced" button.
    In the "general" tab, you will see a tick-box entitled "Show settings icon on taskbar".
    Untick it and click "Apply", then reboot.


    Start Menu > RUN option > and type MSCONFIG > click OK.
    "Startup" tab > untick "Taskbar Display Controls".

    Unfortunately it isn't possible to launch this system tray icon by running the command shown in the .REG file from the Start Menu's "Run" field.  It has to be set as a "startup" program.

    One excellent way of immediately applying an 800x600 setting is by running the following Visual Basic Script:

    Just double-click on it and reboot when prompted, and it should set the screen to 800x600 on reboot.

    You are not alone with this problem.  I have encountered this on many occasions, and tabbing the right number of times before pressing the Enter key (hoping that it is on the "Apply" button) is an acquired skill :-)
    I have a graphics card in which the driver file install dialog is too big for a 640x480 display, and it cuts off all the buttons at the bottom so you have to guess.  I eventually used a resource-hacking utility on the .exe file to make the dialog smaller.

    Hope this info helps you.

    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    One other thing that MIGHT help you see enough of the buttons to click the "Apply" one is if you access your Start Menu and taskbar Settings from the Start Menu > Settings, and tick the "Auto-Hide" option.  The taskbar and start menu will disappear when you move the cursor away from them, and will reveal more of the Display settings dialog at the bottom.
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    WHHHOOOOPS.  I forgot a very crucial part of the .REG file I asked you to scroll over.  Use this instead, or it won'r work :

    ----------- start of text to copy (DON'T copy this line) ----------

    "Taskbar Display Controls"="RunDLL deskcp16.dll,QUICKRES_RUNDLLENTRY"

    ---------- end of text to copy (DON'T copy this line) ------------

    Sorry about that.
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment


    I thought this might be a much easier resolution to your problem, but it doesn't work for that dialog:

    1. Open Display Properties and adjust the settings to 800 x 600
    2. Hold down the ALT key and the Spacebar together
    3. Press the M key
    4. Use the UP Arrow to move the window right up off the top of the screen until you can see the buttons at the bottom
    5. Press the Enter key to hold the position and then click the "Apply" button.

    Nope.  That works where title bars of windows are stuck way above the top of the screen, but it fails after step 4 in this case.  Immediately you move the mouse, it pops back down, and the TAB key doesn't cycle through the buttons and manu's while the dialog is off-screen.  Bummer :-(
    LVL 33

    Expert Comment

    Sometimes using the screen resize buttons on the monitor itself, will do the trick.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    Move a window without using the mouse:

    Alt - Spacebar
    M        (from Move on English Windows)

    Now use cursor keys to move.

    In my experience (win95,98,NT,2000,XP) the display properties always barely fit in 640x480, in 800x600 they easily fit.
    Is something else the matter? Screen size of the monitor itself like coral47 mentioned?

    Author Comment


     Thanks to all of you. Your responses were exhaustive, and I have learned a few things....

     Not the best solution, but I decided simply to award  points to the earliest respondent, John.

    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    You're welcome, Bob.  I agree with the decision as it was really what you needed to know right at this moment to set the resolution.  It obviously worked :-)

    I believe you should download the file for future use, and also take take note (ie copy, paste and save notes) of the various commands and methods mentioned.  You may well need them at some later event when you are pushed for time.  Next time you know of someone who has a window with the title bar stuck up above the top of the screen, you can astound them with your instant fix using my earlier Alt + Spacebar + M method to arrow the window down the screen.


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