I have a 22" external monitor connected to my MacBook Pro (late 2011) via Thunderbolt to VGA. When I boot into Windows 7 x64, the screen seems to work and is mirrored during the boot screens, then it goes blank at the login screen. It stays blank after I log in to Windows. The built-in screen on the laptop works fine.

The monitor works fine in OS X Lion.

  • Have you installed all the latest drivers for the chipset, video card and the screen (where applicable)?
    – user479
    Apr 17, 2012 at 23:47
  • @RandolphWest: I thought that the Boot Camp software did that... How do I find the chipset driver?
    – benregn
    Apr 18, 2012 at 5:13

3 Answers 3


Note that it appears the Thunderbolt may work a bit differently on Windows in Bootcamp than it does on the same computer when running OS X. As noted below on Thunderbolt ports and displays: Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

  1. Why isn't my device recognized when I plug it directly into the Thunderbolt port when running Windows 7 via BootCamp?

Windows 7 scans and activates devices connected to the Thunderbolt port only during the startup process. If a device isn't connected when the computer starts up, Windows 7 will not recognize the device. Restart the computer with the device connected to the port. Thunderbolt devices may also need a driver when running on Windows 7.

Additionally after trying the above, you may need to manually activate and configure the 2nd display in Windows 7, it may not automatically configure and turn on with the first connection attempt.

  1. Make Sure you have the Apple Provided BootCamp Drivers installed.

  2. Right click on the Windows 7 Desktop, click on "Screen resolution".

  3. From there you may need to click on "Detect" and further configure the add on displays resolution and so on.

If the above does not work it appears that there may be some driver issues with the graphics card drivers in Bootcamp that may be causing issues with the Thunderbolt a.k.a. the Mini DisplayPort to VGA adapter. There are quite a few discussion occuring on Apple's Support forms and on the internet dealing with this issue. One solution found:

Finally solved the external display resolution problem.

Just purchased a new Core 2 Duo, MacBook Pro, 15.4'' display with the NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT video card. Loaded Windows7 32-bit with BootCamp 3.0 and then upgraded the Windows NVIDIA video driver with the latest NVIDIA driver (version 196.75) from www.laptopvideo2go.com. Side note: Before updating the NVIDIA driver, I also loaded all of the laptop drivers in Windows with the MacBook recovery disk and completed all Windows updates. I then ran into the same resolution disply problem everyone here is having, which is why I ended up here...


1) Update BootCamp from 3.0 to 3.1 (http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/apple/).

2) Uninstall NVIDIA 196.75 driver and the accompanying NVIDIA software bundle.

3) Install NVIDIA 195.81 driver bundle with the modified INF file - downloaded from www.laptopvideo2go.com.

4) Display works perfectly and tested the solution on 3 difference projectors.

If all else fails I recommend contacting Apple and letting them know of the issue so that they can develop a fix or workaround for it.

  • 1
    Actually the solution that fixed my problem was to update they ATI display driver to the beta version. I had already plugged in the monitor in before booting as is evident in the mirroring when Windows was booting up. But thanks for a detailed answer.
    – benregn
    Jun 13, 2012 at 18:52
  • @benregn Where did you find the ATI display driver? Aug 21, 2012 at 6:38
  • 1
    @JoshFoskett If I remember correctly it was at support.amd.com/us/kbarticles/Pages/Catalystbetadriver1.aspx
    – benregn
    Aug 22, 2012 at 14:31

I just disabled DisplayPort 1.2 on the screens and it started working on My bootcamp partition. 3 screens.

Hope it helps. Tiago



I have a MacBook Pro and Windows 8 installed using Bootcamp.

I could not get my second monitor to work (connected using the Thunderbolt port to DVI connector on the monitor) Here is what I did:

  • identified graphics card by booting into Mac OS, click on the apple icon (top left) >about this mac >more info. Here I found I have a Nvidia Geforce GT 650M graphics card.

  • I then went to the Geforce page and tried to auto detect the driver I needed - that did not work so I manually selected Geforce > 600 Serues > GeForce GT 659M > Windows 8 64bit and it offered GeForce 320.49 Driver BETA


I installed this (I happened to have the second monitor connected) and it started to work!

I then configured the resolution using windows (right click on desktop and select screen resolution)

I find that I can unplug and reconnect the 2nd monitor without having to restart windows (even though I have read elsewhere that thunderbolt does not allow this).

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