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Shawn, Computer Engineer
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 275
Experience:  15 years of Mac software and hardware troubleshooting experience, 10 years of programming experience
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I have a Mac Powerbook G4. I have connected a external hard

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I have a Mac Powerbook G4. I have connected a external hard drive with a DVI cable. It works. Now I need to know how to proceed so I am able to use both the computer screen and new monitor independently. I have a wireless mouse and keyboard.

It sounds like you've got everything almost set up! The only change is that you want to turn OFF mirroring, so that the second display shows up as being a second monitor that doesn't mirror the first. In Displays under the Arrangement pane, you can choose where the second monitor appears in relation to your primary monitor.

Let me know if you need any more details. I hope this helps! Kind regards,

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I cannot get cursor to respond to external monitor without turning on "mirror". Should I use a non-wireless mouse?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Are you there, Shawn?

Wireless shouldn't have anything to do with it.

Go to Displays > Arrangement. You should see two screens there. That arrangement is how they are from the perspective of your cursor.

For example, I have a second large monitor that in Arrangement appears to the left of my MacBook screen. If I want to move my cursor from the MacBook screen to the external monitor, I have to move the cursor all the way to the left side of my MacBook screen, and then keep moving it. The cursor will keep going (rather than stopping like it usually does at the edge of the screen) onto the second monitor.

Does that make sense?

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
It almost helps, but when I move my cursor from my computer screen icon to the external icon, it only changes the icon's [osition. I am a rather novice grandama and a bit frustrated, but you are being very helpful!!

No problem - it took me awhile to get used to moving my cursor off the screen. :-)

I'd like you to go back into Displays and look at the Arrangement tab again. You should see two screens - one is probably smaller than the other. The smaller square is your PowerBook screen, and the larger square is your new external monitor. Note which side of the PowerBook square that your external monitor square is on.

Then, close Displays.

Finally, move your cursor off the edge of your real PowerBook screen in the direction that you noted earlier. Push it all the way off the edge and it should pop up on the second display.

If you want to move a program window over there, then simply drag the title bar of the window over to the second monitor.

Let me know how that works for you. You're doing a great job - we're almost there!

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Great, Shawn. I have now learned how to move from one to the other. However, with the "mirror" turned off, there is only a desktop picture on my external screen and no icons.
Also, may I print all of this advice so that I can refer to it?? AND--how do I reach you again when I have another question?? I hate to keep you at this so long but you are saving me from a heart attack!!

I'm glad that it's working for you now! :-)

Unfortunately you can't have the icons on both unless you turn on mirroring. So, you can't use the monitors independently AND have the same icons/menubar/dock on both.

You can, however, drag icons over to the other monitor. If you want to have an icon (like your hard drive) on both monitors, then you can make an alias:

1) Single-click on the hard drive (or any other file - except for the dock icons)
2) Choose File > Make Alias. This creates a shortcut to your file or hard drive, which you can then drag to the other monitor where it is convenient.

You're more than welcome to print this advice or save it on your computer. I'm also happy to answer your questions in the future - just come to this forum and preface your question with "For Shawn: " and it will find its way to me.

Please do let me know if there's anything else I can help with. It's been a pleasure!

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Just one more thing, I promise If i keep my G4 closed and only use the external, What do i do about the computer going to sleep. Does it have to stay on all the time?? Is this hard on my computer??

As long as the external monitor is still plugged in, then the computer should remain awake so that you can use it. It's not really that much harder on the computer to use it in this way.

You can still set the computer to sleep after a certain amount of time by going to System Preferences > Energy Saver. Click the "Show Details" button (if it exists) and then you can move the sliders to set when the computer falls asleep.

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any more questions. Kind regards,

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