Bring back application from disconnected monitor

I use a laptop as my primary machine. At work, I connect this to two external monitors, and at home, I use it on its own. A funny thing happens in Windows 7: when you have an application window on an external monitor, then disconnect the monitors, the application remains on the imaginary screen (sometimes). So you can see it's icon in your taskbar, and you can minimize and maximize it by clicking the icon, but the application window is inaccessible.

You have four options to bring it back:

  1. Force-restart your computer - obviously not ideal.
  2. Kill the application using the icon or task manager - also not ideal sometimes.
  3. Re-connect the external displays - not always an option.
  4. Move the application to the visible screen:
    1. Hover your mouse over the taskbar icon, 
    2. then mouse over the Aero preview of the application,
    3. right-click the preview square, 
    4. click on Move in the context menu, 
    5. your mouse cursor may have disappeared now, left-click once and move your mouse around till the application window comes back into view


  1. With the windows active (which can be done by clicking on it), you can also use Win+Shift+Left or Right.
    Win+ArrowKeys move the app around the display (tile left/right, minimize/maximize).

  2. Nice one - didnt know about the RightWin+ArrowKeys functionality. Not only can you use this to relocate offscreen windows, but also to move windows from one monitor to the other, even when maximized.

    3 x (RightWin+RightArrow), 1 x (RightWin+UpArrow).

    Beauty! Now if only this worked on Linux :-)


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