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External Monitor Is Not Detected until the Display Output Mode Is Manually Selected Using a USB Type-C Dongle

Summary: The following article provides information about a problem with an external display. The monitor may not be detected, under certain graphics configurations.

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Article Content


You may experience the following symptom when connecting to an external display:

  • The computer may not automatically detect the external monitor.

If you own an Alienware x15 R1, or Alienware x17 R1 laptop, and have set this configuration:

  • The laptop screen supports the Nvidia Dynamic Display Switch (DDS) feature.
  • You have entered the BIOS and enabled the Discrete Graphics Processing Unit (dGPU) mode.
  • The external Monitor is connected using the Thunderbolt port on the computer.


Enabling dGPU mode puts the integrated Intel graphics into power-saving mode. When the BIOS is set to use the discrete Nvidia graphics, monitor auto detection is disabled.


Note: The Intel Graphics are working as designed. Intel confirms this is a known hardware limitation when you hard set dedicated graphics only.

If you are looking to resolve this:

  • You may be able to enable detection, by pressing either Win + P, or Fn + F8 to select a video output display mode manually.
  • You can disable the dGPU mode in the computers BIOS. Check you User Manual of your computer to navigate the BIOS and change the dGPU mode.
  • You can use a different cable and another port such as HDMI or DisplayPort on the computer that supports external graphics.

Additional Information

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Article Properties

Affected Product

Alienware x15 R1, Alienware x17 R1

Last Published Date

22 Nov 2023



Article Type