Checking and setting the resolution and refresh rate
Fortunately, Windows enables you to easily check and set the resolution and refresh rate that your monitor uses:
- Right-click in any blank place on the Windows desktop and choose Properties.
Windows XP opens the Display Properties dialog box.
- Click the Settings tab.
The Screen Resolution slider shows the display's current resolution.
- If you want to change the resolution, move the slider to the setting you want. If you don't want to change the resolution, you may skip to Step 7.
- Take a look at the Color Quality drop-down list.
If Windows XP set it to a lower value than you want when you moved the slider, you may have to upgrade or replace your display adapter.
- Click the Apply button.
Windows XP changes the display's resolution.
- If Windows XP opens a dialog box that asks if you want to keep the
new settings, click Yes to keep the new settings or No to return to the old ones.
If the display disappears or becomes unreadable, press the Esc key to return to the old settings. (Or, if you wait 15 seconds, Windows XP returns to the old settings automatically.) This means that you chose a resolution that your monitor cannot display. You have to choose a lower resolution.
- When you're done, click OK to close the Properties dialog box.
To check and set the refresh rate your monitor uses, follow these steps:
- Choose Start?Control Panel.
- In the Control Panel, double-click Displays to open the Display
Properties dialog box.
Equivalently, you can right-click in any blank place on the Windows desktop and choose Properties.
- Click the Settings tab.
Windows XP shows you the screen resolution and color depth.
- Click the Advanced button, and then click the Monitor tab.
- If you want to change the refresh rate, select a different rate and click Apply.
Windows XP changes the refresh rate.
Make sure that you don't force the monitor to run at a refresh rate that's higher than the maximum allowed: Some monitors may get very upset and refuse to show anything if you swing the number up too high; older monitors have even been known to overheat. Make sure you don't go too far by either by selecting the Hide Modes That This Monitor Cannot Display check box or, if the check box is grayed out, by checking the documentation that came with your monitor to see what the manufacturer recommends for a maximum refresh rate. In any event, choosing a refresh rate that's lower than the one you're currently using won't hurt anything.
- If Windows XP opens a dialog box that asks whether you want to keep
the new settings, click Yes to keep the new refresh rate or No to
return to the old one.
If the display disappears or becomes unreadable, press the Esc key to return to the old refresh rate (or wait for Windows XP to return automatically). This means that you chose a refresh rate that your monitor cannot display at the current resolution. You have to choose a lower refresh rate or a lower resolution.
- When you're done, click OK to close both properties dialog boxes and, if necessary, click the X (Close) button to get out of the Control Panel.
In this tutorial:
- Finding and Installing the Hardware
- Understanding Hardware Types
- Choosing an interface
- IDE and EIDE interfaces
- USB interface
- Upgrading the Basic Stuff
- Evaluating printers
- Considering multifunction devices
- Choosing a new monitor
- Picking the right screen size
- Fighting flicker
- Checking and setting the resolution and refresh rate
- Picking a video adapter
- Getting enough memory (RAM)
- Upgrading keyboards
- Choosing a mouse - or alternatives
- Adding storage devices
- Picking CD-RW or DVD-/+RW drives
- Understanding flash memory and keydrives
- Backing up to tape
- USB Hubs
- Establishing a network
- Running high-speed Internet access
- Upgrading Imaging
- Scanning photographic film
- Adding Audio
- Hooking up speakers and headphones
- Choosing a microphone
- Choosing a Personal Data Assistant
- Installing New Hardware
- Restarting with the last known good configuration
- Installing USB hardware