How to Attach a Laptop with a Broken Screen to a Monitor


A broken laptop screen can be frustrating and hinder your productivity, but there’s no need to panic. With the right tools and steps, you can quickly connect your laptop to an external monitor, effectively transforming it into a functional desktop workstation. This article will guide you through the process of attaching your laptop with a broken screen to an external monitor.

Step 1: Assess Your Laptop’s Video Output Options

Before attaching your laptop to a monitor, determine the available video output options on your laptop. Common video outputs include HDMI, VGA, or DisplayPort. Identify which output ports are available on both your laptop and the monitor you plan to use.

Step 2: Gather Necessary Cables and Adapters

Once you have identified the compatible video outputs, acquire the necessary cables or adapters if you don’t already have them. For example, an HDMI cable for an HDMI connection or a VGA cable for a VGA connection. If your laptop and external monitor have different ports, you will need an adapter or converter cable.

Step 3: Connect the Laptop to the Monitor

With the appropriate cables in hand, connect one end of the cable to your laptop’s video output port and the other end to the monitor’s input port. Ensure that both devices are turned off before making any connections.

Step 4: Power On Both Devices

Turn on both your laptop and external monitor. When the power is first supplied, some monitors may automatically detect and display content from your laptop. In this case, skip to step 6.

Step 5: Change Display Settings on Your Laptop

If you can still see parts of your broken laptop screen and recognize icons or prompts, navigate to

Windows’ display settings (right-click on Desktop -> Display settings) or macOS’ System Preferences (Apple menu -> System Preferences -> Displays) and adjust settings accordingly.

If you cannot see anything on your broken laptop screen, try using keyboard shortcuts to switch the display to the external monitor:

For Windows laptops:

Press the ‘Windows’ key + ‘P‘ to open the Project menu and then hit ‘Enter’.

For macOS laptops:

Press ‘Control’ + ‘F1’ or ‘Control’ + ‘F2’, depending on your MacBook model, to cycle through the external display modes.

Step 6: Adjust Resolution and Display Mode

Once your laptop’s display appears on the external monitor, you can adjust the resolution and display mode to better suit your needs. This can be done through Windows’ display settings or macOS’ System Preferences.


Connecting a laptop with a broken screen to an external monitor is a simple and effective way to regain functionality while you plan for a screen repair or replacement. With these easy steps, you can continue working and stay productive despite an unfortunate hardware mishap.