How to Use a Secondary Monitor While Gaming on the Primary

Are you trying to use two screens for two completely different tasks at the same time? Perhaps you want to play games on your primary monitor but browse social media, or watch sports, on your secondary monitor?

I don’t blame you, it’s truly a great idea. I have even tried to do that myself.

For example, I wanted to work on one of our PC monitors using the mouse and keyboard, while my girlfriend wanted to play some Call of Duty using her controller on the second gaming monitor.

All of that on the same PC.

If that is what you are trying to achieve but aren’t quite sure how that could even work, I’m going to show you exactly how to use a secondary monitor while gaming on the primary in this guide.

Also Useful: Why Your Second Screen Goes Black When Gaming

Can You Use Two Monitors at the Same Time?

Technically you can, but not at the same time. Sounds confusing? It is. It took me forever trying to figure this one out and the fact that there was nothing on the internet to explain it was even worse.

Because of that, I will provide you with two scenarios just so that you can get the answer to the one that applies best to you.

Playing a Game & Alt-Tabbing in-Between Breaks

The first scenario is when you have two monitors. On monitor A you are playing your game, while on monitor B you are writing an essay. In this scenario, let’s say that you are using a mouse and keyboard to work on your essay and a controller to play your game.

You can have two types of input devices into one system at the same time, and you can use both while they are both plugged in and ready to use for their relevant purpose.

For example, you play the game for 10-15 minutes, the round ends, you alt-tab out of the full screen to do some work on your essay in the 2-3 minutes that you have between your rounds.

If that is the case for you, as long as you are not using both of the input devices together on both of the monitors simultaneously, you will have no problems at all. However, if you are trying to use two types of input devices simultaneously, please refer to scenario 2 which I am going to talk about right underneath.

Using the Second Monitor While You Are Playing a Game on the Primary Monitor

In scenario two, again, we will have monitor A and monitor B. On monitor A, you will be playing a game using a controller or mouse and keyboard (it really doesn’t matter) while on monitor B, again, it will be used to write an essay with a mouse and keyboard. This time, however, the monitors will be used simultaneously.

Obviously, I anticipate that you don’t have four hands, so I would imagine that you would be playing the game, while another person is using the second monitor to write the essay.

This was a scenario that I personally experienced as I mentioned above.

To give you a straight answer, you can’t use two input devices such as a mouse and keyboard and a controller to do 2 completely different things using one PC.

This is because the devices will interfere with each other.

So, to answer your question, no, unfortunately you can’t use the second monitor at the same time you are playing a game on the primary monitor.

The best you can do is load up a video, film or stream and have that playing on the second screen whilst you are gaming on the primary.

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