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I have a display connected to the HDMI port of my laptop. When I start up the computer with the display plugged in, the built-in display does not turn on, and the external display becomes the primary. I can fix the issue by removing and reconnecting the HDMI cable, but I am curious as to why this behavior is the default.

  • OS 10.10.4
  • MacBook Pro Retina 15" mid 2015 (model 11,5)

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It sounds like you have the external display set as the primary display. Take a look at this article on how to set your primary display.

Set the Primary Display on a Mac

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  • I'm curious how having the display set as the primary would cause this problem. I have many users setup with their external monitor set as the primary that do not complain about this problem.
    – mcgrailm
    Jul 8, 2015 at 15:42
  • Try reconfiguring and see what happens. Also what is the make/model/settings of the external monitor?
    – Allan
    Jul 8, 2015 at 16:03

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