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My MacBook Pro has a Mini DisplayPort and running Snow Leopard. I'm looking to get myself a Mini DisplayPort -> VGA adapter so that I can attach a hand-me-down LCD display. The LCD display has a native resolution of 1280 x 1024.

Can the MacBook Pro use both displays at once, with the main notebook display at 1280x800 and the external display at 1280x1024?

In general, can the Mini DisplayPort output a resolution different from the main notebook display?

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Yes, mismatched resolutions are no problem. I'm running a similar set up right now. You can arrange them however you like in the Displays section of System Preferences.

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