How to use Chromebook as a second monitor

A display screen is sufficient for most users. But a second monitor dramatically improves productivity for gaming, simulations, video editing, or similar purposes. It also becomes much more convenient if you want to use multiple apps simultaneously.

Normally, you need to invest in a monitor to extend your screen, but what if you have a spare laptop? If you have a Chromebook that you can transform into a secondary screen, using it is the cheapest method.

Using a Chromebook as a second monitor isn’t as easy as using Windows or Mac laptops. So, we’ve created their article to help you through this process.

Should I use a Chromebook as a second monitor?

A Chromebook does not have video input. Therefore, you can only use some server clients that use remote desktop access to emulate Chromebook as a mirrored or extended screen.

The apps work over wired or wireless connections. Wireless interference can cause delays and delays in such connections. You may even experience lag in wired mode since the cables you use are not optimized for video transfer.

So if you need a second monitor for tasks where lag isn’t desirable, like gaming, it’s best to invest in a separate monitor. But for casual use, if you already have a Chromebook, you can use it as a second monitor.

How to set up Chromebook as a second monitor

As mentioned above, since the Chromebook lacks video input, you need to use an app to emulate the effect of having a second monitor. There are no such apps on your default Chromebook or other operating systems.

Therefore, you can only use third-party applications. Duet Display, a paid app, is considered by users to perform the best for this purpose. But there are also many free programs available, such as Spacedesk and Deskreen.

Use Duet Display to set up Chromebook as a second monitor

Duet Display is the most popular software used by users to set up Chromebook as a second monitor. They claim that it provides the least delay and many options for user convenience. So this app has many users despite being a paid app.

Google used to provide a free Chromebook perk for Duet Display. While it’s stopped doing that now, you can still check out the Chromebook Perks website in case Google starts offering the benefit again.

Duet Display allows wired or wireless connection with iPads or Androids, but you can only use wireless mode for Chromebook. Here are the steps required to use this program to set up Chromebook as a second monitor:

  1. Download and install Duet Display for both Chromebook and your main PC. You can find the Chromebook app in the Google Play Store.
  2. For Mac or Windows, find the installer on the official website.
  3. Connect Chromebook and your PC to the same WiFi network.
  4. On Mac, you must also give access to the Duet Display app. To do it,
    • Click on Apple icon and go to System preferences > Security and Privacy > Privacy > Accessibility.
    • Click on the padlock icon and enter your credentials.
    • Tick duet from the application list.
    • Now select screen recording from the sidebar and check duet.
  5. Open the duo screen app on your Chromebook and your main PC.
  6. In the Windows or Mac app, select Android and so Air.
    duet-display-android-air
  7. Wait for your Chromebook to appear. If not, restart your computer and try again.
  8. You can also click Connect to IP manually and enter the IP address of your Chromebook. To find the IP address,
    • Click on your The net icon.
    • Select your connected access point and look under the IP address field.
  9. Hit the Click to connect wirelessly Button to connect the Chromebook as a second monitor.
  10. you can click Adjust display settings to modify some settings like:
    • Enabling Screen Mirroring (by default, the app extends your monitor)
    • Change resolution, FPS, quality, etc.
  11. You can also sign in to Duet Air on both devices for added security.
  12. If you can’t share your screen on your Chromebook, go to the Profile in the Duet Display application on your main computer and check Screen sharing enabled.
    screen sharing enabled

Alternative apps to set up Chromebook as a second monitor

While users consider Duet Display to be the best option for using Chromebook as a second monitor, it is a paid app. And your free Chromebook benefit is no longer available (as of the publication date of this article).

It does not mean that Google will not offer such advantages in the future. But you may want to use free alternatives. So here are some open source apps that you can use for this purpose.

space desk

Spacedesk is a free multi-monitor app that supports both wired and wireless modes. While it has some bugs and lags a bit compared to Duet Display, you can use it just fine on high-spec systems or for less resource-intensive tasks.

This is how you can use it to set up Chromebook as a second monitor:

  1. Download and install the app from its official website for Windows or Mac and Play Store for Chromebook.
  2. Connect both computers to the same network or connect them via USB or Ethernet cable.
  3. Open the app on both computers.
  4. On Chromebook, click on the primary computer below Connect to main machine. If it doesn’t appear, click the + (more) and enter the IP address of your computer.
    space desk

Splashtop Wired XDisplay

Splashtop Wired XDisplay is another free alternative software. It only supports a wired connection, but it won’t overcome lag or other issues. Follow the steps below to use Chromebook as a second monitor using this app:

  1. Install the app from the Google Play Store for Chromebook and the official website for Mac or Windows.
  2. Connect both devices using a USB or Ethernet cable and open the app.
  3. Launch projection mode from Windows (Win + P) or Mac (mirror icon).
  4. Only the mirror view option is available by default. To enlarge your screen, open the app and
    • on Mac: In the menu bar, select preferences > Arrangement > Wired X Screen and disable mirror screens.
    • in windows: Go to the Advanced tab and uncheck Enable mirror mode.cable-xdisplay-disable-mirror

desk

Duet Display, Spacedesk, and Wired XDisplay only allow Chromebook to be used as a second monitor for Windows or Mac computers. So if you want to extend your display for a Linux PC, a good option is Deskreen. It also works with Windows and Mac but is a bit slow.

To use this program to set up Chromebook as a second monitor,

  1. Install and open the Deskreen app on your Windows, Mac, or Linux computer.
  2. Open the app. You will see a QR code and an address.
    desk
  3. Scan the code with any QR code scanner on Chromebook. Or you can enter the address in the Chromebook browser.

Change the display settings of the second monitor

You can adjust the display of your Chromebook from the multi-monitor display settings.

First of all, it is better to organize the logical positions of the screen in a similar way to the physical configuration for convenience. This is how you can do it:

  1. On Windows: To go windows settings > System > Display.
  2. On Mac: To go System preferences > screens > Arrangement.
  3. You should see your primary monitor and the Chromebook as the secondary monitor on the page. If you can’t find a secondary display,
    • On Mac: About him screens preferences, click detect screens.
    • On Windows: Click on multiple screens and select Detect.
  4. Click and drag your monitors based on their physical location.

Then change the Chromebook monitor settings from your display settings. The options you can modify are pretty self-explanatory, like resolution, orientation, etc.

You can also change the projection mode from the settings. However, there is an easier way to this process. On Windows, click Win + P to access projection options. To do the same thing on Mac, click the mirror icon in the menu bar.

If you choose to extend your screen or use Chromebook as a separate screen, you need to drag a window to the edge of your main screen to transfer it to Chromebook.

Related questions

How to fix problems using Chromebook as a second monitor?

If you encounter any issues using Chromebook as a second monitor, you can apply the following troubleshooting methods:

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