Windows 10: Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons

Discus and support Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons in Windows 10 Support to solve the problem; Hi. I know this is common issue and it's not even considered as "bug", because someone who has no brain thinks it's a good feature. So the problem, is... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Support' started by mordax, Jul 13, 2016.

  1. mordax Win User

    Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons

    Hi. I know this is common issue and it's not even considered as "bug", because someone who has no brain thinks it's a good feature. So the problem, is that I have 2 monitors.
    Asus 4k (3840x2160) connected over DisplayPort and Asus 1080p monitor over DVI, whenever I turn my primary 4k monitor OFF, then windows thinks that I have disconnected the monitor and pushes all icons from 4k monitor onto 1080p, which as you can imagine, ends up in total mess. I have about 30-40 things on desktop and i use them daily, so please do not tell me to "manage my desktop" like I was recommended to do in some other places.

    I have googled like crazy, but I haven't found a proper solution. Most of those topics are about AMD, but I have nVidia graphics card.

    Somewhere I saw that blocking off Pin 18 on displayport cable will help, but for me it did not help. I managed to tape off the pin 18, instead it stopped auto detecting the resolution of the monitor, it went into 1080p when i plugged it back in, but it did not solve the issue, as soon as i turned the monitor off, it squashed all icons onto other monitor again.

    I've seen people use some cable extenders that kill this feature, but I'm not interested in buying a gadget, I do lot of hardware testing and often i need to test a different monitor, yanking that gadget left and right, would just be too annoying. Also my 4k monitor only supports 60fps on 4k when connected over DisplayPort, so using HDMI is out of the question.

    There was some topic about EDID editor, but in my nvidia control panel, i don't even see the "workstation" category, so I can't even test.

    So now i'm here, asking if there's any way to disable this lame "feature" by changing some settings in windows? Surely there MUST be something that could disable this?
    I hope someone has solution for this, thanks.

    mordax, Jul 13, 2016
  2. Doogr Win User

    Blank screen after November Windows 10 update

    I had a similar issue with my Acer 's monitor when the latetest update was installing.

    I messed my whole system up trying to reboot etc. to discover that the update messes something up in the power. My monitor was lit up but black screen like you experienced. I could not turn turn it off (light stayed on) I unplugged it and plugged it in and
    it seemed to be reset.

    Not knowing this of course I messed up Windows by powering off and on not knowing the monitor was the problem.

    Since my only solution was to roll back to an earlier build of Win 10 the monitor issue is gone but sooner or later this update will come back.
    Doogr, Jul 13, 2016
  3. BossDweeb Win User
    Why do my desktop icons all move to the left side of the screen?

    Custom icon arrangements often get set to default if you, or a program/game changes the monitor to a lower resolution.

    This does not happen every time, but some games fail to switch Windows back to your monitors native resolution when they close.

    It can also happen if the game crashes.

    Switching between two monitors that have different resolutions can also mess up your custom arrangement at times.

    No setting in Windows is entirely successful at preventing this. I've used the little program below for years to save my

    free arranged icon layout, and restore it when it gets scrambled.

    You can create 'custom' settings when using monitors with different resolutions as well. This can help when you don't

    always use the two monitors.

    The program works from the R/click desktop context menu, and only takes seconds to get your icons back in order.

    MIDIOX Desktop Restore (icons)

    "Still have the problem with the background photo being partially hidden off the screen on the left side showing 1/2 of the

    icons that have been jammed up there."

    You can 'loose' icons off screen if you change your display to a lower resolution than the native resolution.

    Or you may be using two monitors using Extend Monitors options that may be setup in a way that causes your to Desktop

    overlap into the second monitor ?
    BossDweeb, Jul 13, 2016
  4. bro67 Win User

    Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons

    Yes if you are using it between two different external monitors your settings will change. There are programs out there, along with what the GPU mfg offers to allow you to set up different profiles.
    bro67, Jul 13, 2016
  5. mordax Win User
    Can you name or link any of those programs you're talking about?
    I have searched for hours, no good.

    Does anyone here actually know WHAT is responsible for this behaviour? I mean in windows 10, does anyone know how to disable this thing within windows 10? That would be best solution to just disable it. This does not happen in windows XP or vista, so it's not just hardware side, it must be inside windows 7+ where they introduced this annoying feature.

    To be more specific. there must be a certain service inside windows that monitors for the "hot plug pin", so whenever that pin sends a signal, then windows reacts to it, can't you just disable that?
    mordax, Jul 14, 2016
  6. bro67 Win User
    Nvidia's forum has discussions about the software all of the time. There has also been discussions for the same type of multiple display profile software on here. The program Display fusion is another. You are going to have to find out which one works best for you for what you are doing. That also means backup up your hard drive before you try any of these kind of software, in case something happens.
    bro67, Jul 14, 2016
  7. mordax Win User
    Not really the answer i'm looking for. I'd like to know details. Also display fusion is paid program and it looks massive, i don't want to install anything that messes up my work area. I ONLY want to disable the auto detect / hotplug "feature". I'm not interested in installing something i'd never use + it would just eat up my resources on background for no reason.

    That's more like go after a fly with bazooka and destroy everything else in process, might as well just take a sledge to PC, and call it a "fix" lol

    Also I have been on nvidia forums, there's no solution anywhere. people keep asking, but no solutions. there are topics from like 2011 or something like that, when this annoying thing popped up in windows 7.

    Isn't there ANYONE on this forum who knows answer to this annoying "feature"? Reason why i posted on win10 forums, is because i'm looking for windows 10 solution, not driver or 3rd party programs. I'm looking for universal solution that works regardless if i change my monitors or graphics card.

    I was messing around with procmon and found that when i power monitor off / on, then it accesses bunch of registry keys related to monitors, can't someone just write a small tool to simply disable windows from accessing those things? i'm not a programmer, so i don't know how to do this myself. this is why i'm asking here. If i'd know how to program, it would be easy to block windows from doing it. i'm shocked that nobody really cares for this, even tho google is full of topics where lot of people are having same issue and getting angry over this, because it keeps messing up their desktop.
    mordax, Jul 15, 2016
  8. bro67 Win User

    Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons

    Regardless of the answer, again you are going to have to find a program that allows you to save settings for the different monitors you are using. There is no one program fits all, since everyone has their own personal choice. No one on here has access to your computer, so once again you are going to have to find the one that works best for you and how you use your computer.

    The Windows 10 solution is to find the best video settings profile program that best fits your needs.
    bro67, Jul 16, 2016
  9. just reset main monitor display resolution. 2nd monitor res determines sizing of icons, folders etc. lower res bigger icons if you have a primary 4 k monitor and maybe standard monitor or 2 k. For pc to tv that is even worse effect on sizing. unless (my guess, iif you have a 4k tv)
    lopedoggie, Jul 16, 2016
  10. mordax Win User
    @bro67 nah dude, you misunderstood me. I'm looking for a way to disable this feature in windows, so it won't check for the monitor and won't auto-do anything. Just like in windows XP, if i plug in a new monitor, it does not detect it and it won't even power it on, i have to manually go into display settings and ENABLE it as secondary or primary monitor and set a resolution for it. Setting a wrong resolution, would also make things go poop. you might end up with blank screen, this is why there's the safety that reverts changes if you don't click on "keep changes" button within 30 seconds. All this is GONE in windows 7 and later, because it's been replaced with this annoying auto detect / hotplug.
    So i'm looking for a way to remove this feature completely, i don't want to use any tools to set my monitor resolution or anything else, just to disable it all. so if i plug in new monitor, nothing happens. If there are monitors connected and i connect a new one, then it would default to like 800x600 or something like that, just like in XP.

    @lopedoggie How would resetting the resolution help? and btw you're wrong. By the sound of it, you don't have windows 10 and/or multi monitors with different resolutions, because in windows 10, I can have different DPI settings on each monitor. My main is 4k monitor with 150% DPI and other is 1080p with 100% DPI. Desktop icons look bigger in 1080p monitor, whenever i move app from monitor to monitor, it resizes to visually look same size.
    either way you misunderstood me, sizing is not the problem. problem is when i power off my main monitor, then everything gets thrown onto secondary monitor.
    mordax, Jul 16, 2016
  11. mordax Win User
    bump ...
    so seriously, there is not a single person in 10 forums who knows solution for this? WOW, that's just shocking and sad at same time.
    I guess this forum is only for casual beginners and nobody actually knows any advanced stuff about windows *Sad
    mordax, Jul 20, 2016
  12. mordax Win User
    I have just spoke to Display Fusion support and they said there's no option to bypass / disable the monitor auto detect, so it's a bust.
    Seems like ten forums is also a bust *Sad
    this thing is driving me nuts and I won't stop asking people until someone finds a solution, every single time my monitors are put to sleep by windows, everything gets jacked up. this started happening after the FORCED windows 10 update (i got GTX 1080 and it doesn't support older version of win10 so i was FORCED to update and now this problem is worse than ever). Every time i go AFK without even touching the monitor, windows jacks up the icons and apps. it's unbareable!
    mordax, Jul 24, 2016
  13. Prizm Win User

    Turning off monitor messes up my desktop icons

    Not only does it mess up the icons, it also screws up window placement and sizing for all your open windows. I'm getting really sick of it. I'm pretty sure it's a DisplayPort bug, so I'm going to have to switch back to using a HDMI cable...I hope that works.
    Prizm, Aug 14, 2016
  14. geekEguy Win User
    I had the same issue and I had tried everything. Switching to HDMI didn't work.
    Look up "monitor detect killer" this device took care of it for me.
    geekEguy, Apr 4, 2018

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