Surface Pro 3 Diary Entry 4: Monitor Sync Issues

Surface Pro 3 Diary Entry 4: Monitor Sync Issues

I know many of you have been following my trek into replacing my entire computing experience with the Surface Pro 3 and the Surface Pro 3 docking station. And, I know many of you are also investing time to, hopefully, eliminate the drag of unnecessary technology from your computing environment. If you've somehow missed out on my experiences, you can catch up.

As I mentioned in my 1st Diary Entry, I wanted to go through this process with a completely open mind and report problems I experienced along the way, and even be able to backtrack if my plan was not fruitful. I went in with the mindset that this would not work, so I've been pleasantly surprised just how successful the process has been. In my 3rd Diary Entry, I talked about my first real problem where my stored monitor configuration seemed to disappear after a week away. I fixed that up in short order (the fix is included in the article) and it has not happened again, but it's worth knowing that the potential for a problem does exist.

Just a couple days ago I posted my review for the Plugable USB 3.0 10-Port Hub. In that review I noted that, after switching to USB 3.0 for my 3-monitor setup (eliminating the docking station's mini-display port from the configuration), display performance improved. But, this has brought on a new problem. When I slide the Surface Pro 3 into the dock, my monitors sync but they don't sync correctly. The display resolution is off, showing a much larger desktop. As evidenced in the following screenshot, you can tell immediately that the multi-monitor setup didn’t auto-adjust correctly by the size of the desktop icons.

And, it's not just the icons that get resized. The entire environment is much larger than it should be, including applications.

It's interesting to me that the only problems I've experienced are display issues. Everything else works phenomenally. But, it's my belief the display problems are really less about the Surface Pro 3 and the docking station, and more about the hardware drivers currently available. I believe better drivers will fix it. I keep checking for driver updates, but nothing new has shown up yet.

The problem is not unfixable. All it takes is a reboot for the monitors to sync and set resolution correctly. But, it does take a reboot, which means the convenience of just inserting the Surface Pro 3 into the docking station and start working is taken away. This problem doesn't make me want to chuck it all and go back to my prior configuration because I've found too much value in the new setup.

I have another Diary Entry coming up soon where I'll talk about the value of mobility and how being truly mobile takes some retraining and effort. Just because you have the ability to be highly mobile, doesn't mean it comes naturally. I've already eluded to this HERE, but I'll expand on it soon.

Talk to you soon.

P.S. After posting this diary entry, Plugable support contacted me over email to help. We're currently working on the issue. They believe they can fix the mandatory reboot to fix monitor resolution problem. I'll let you know what comes of it. But, I do have to send out some kudos to Plugable support. They have always been fantastic to work with.


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