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Command your monitor

Quickly change your monitor's resolution and other parameters with this command-line tool.

Display Changer from 12noon is a free display management utility that can change the height, width, color, and other aspects of your desktop via command-line switches. It can manage multiple monitor configurations, too. What may be its neatest trick is its ability to run an application in a different display resolution and return to normal resolution when the program ends. If you like to record and watch video on your PC, you can use it to temporarily configure your screen to display TV-quality video and return to a higher resolution when your player closes. You can also create shortcuts for quickly changing your display resolution, orientation, color, and much more.

The installer offers both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Display Changer's Console version, which is best for batches and script, and a Windows version, which quickly creates shortcuts that you can click to change screen resolution or specify other functions from the desktop. We ran the 64-bit Console edition, opened the Command Prompt and typed in the command to list our system's dual displays, a digital LCD monitor and a digital flat-panel TV. Next we entered the command to detach our second monitor, the TV. What Display Changer does best is make quick, temporary changes when specific programs run, so we decided to change our main display's resolution from 1920x1080 to a lower resolution suitable for watching old cartoons copied from videotape; in this case, 1024x768. We entered the switch, following the guidance of the program's Web site. Display Changer instantly changed our screen's resolution. After we'd made the change, we opened the 64-bit Windows executable, which created a shortcut to apply the settings. We restored our monitor's settings using the system's graphics properties and created a shortcut for our current settings. We then clicked the 1024x768 shortcut, which was clearly labeled, and our screen resolution changed instantly. Clicking the other shortcut restored our optimal settings. The program's Web site lists numerous switches, parameters, and examples of the many things this versatile tool can do.

Obviously, Display Changer isn't for inexperienced users or those who want nothing to do with command lines. If you're old-school, hard-core, mad skilled, or just like to learn different ways to do things, Display Changer can make it happen.

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