As there are many different kinds of projector, give yourself time to practice this with the one you'll be using - before you need to use it in anger!
You'll usually find it's just a matter of connecting things up with a couple of cables before switching it all on, the pc last, and remembering at the end to switch the projector to standby in order to let its fan remove the heat from it - more on this at the foot of the page
Connecting Projector and Laptop
You'll have various power and video cables to deal with, they're unlikely to be colour coded like these, but usually they'll only 'Fit' in particular sockets and you'll not usually hit problems with connections.
Switching everything on
You need to switch the projector (and any other peripheral devices) on first, and last of all switch on the laptop. That way, it gets the chance to interrogate its surroundings to make a list of the devices to which it is connected
If you can't get the laptop's screen to show from the projector, there is usually a 'Data source' button on the projector ... toggle this through various sources until you find the one that's the laptop.
If this doesn't work try holding down the 'Function' key on the laptop and pressing F7 (or F8, or another, the correct key may have a 'Screen' graphic on it) as sometimes this switches the output from the laptop itself from its own screen to an external screen.
Connecting the laptop to the Bath Spa University network
Connect and test the network connection before you need it - the network point may not be 'live' and this may need intervention from the Network Admin people. As an alternative, if you only need the web, use the Bath Spa University wireless network - eduroam - which may be more forgiving, especially if you've previously used either ...
Laptops and Projectors - Solving Problems
This may well be mechanical, (perhaps a lever or two next to the projector lens)
Different types of projector will be laid out in different ways - just experiment. There's usually a button that blanks the screen, causing panic if you activate it inadvertently. Just identify it early on ...
This allows you to adjust the aspect ratio so your image on screen is square and not shaped like the keystone in a lintel
No display on projector
Try holding down the laptop's function key and pressing 'F7' to toggle the monitor/external monitor mode.
Dual monitor woes
If you meet this, the desktop image appears on the laptop screen, but a stubborn 'Empty desktop' on the projector. This isn't a 'Windows' problem. The 'Culprit' is the computer's graphics card - it's the thing that runs the display and in this case it is being obstructive by providing a 'Dual monitor' output that most people don't need - and if you do, what you're more likely to need is the same display on both.
To put the same display on both, the graphics card software will refer to 'Cloning' the display and you'll need to set it to do that.
This setting is likely not to be in the 'Display' item from the control panel.
Go to the Control Panel but ignore the 'Display' item: instead, look for settings to do with the graphics controller - the icon may resemble a computer screen, the image to the left is an example from Intel. As an alternative, look for a graphics item in the system tray at bottom right of your desktop.
Set the graphics card to 'Clone' the display, look for a check box with this option. You may find the dialogue to be poorly designed, but hunt for this setting.
You should now see the same screen displayed on both projector and laptop ... but this may not persist once the laptop is rebooted the setting may revert to what it was ...
This problem typically appears on recent laptops - say a Toshiba laptop with an Intel graphics card, or something with an Nvidia graphics card. Don't expect the setting to be in the same place from one laptop to another I'm afraid ... just search for it and probably not in the 'Display' properties ... look there as a last resort though.
When you've finished
Don't immediately disconnect the projector from its power supply. Switch off using the projectors on/standby button and then let the fan run until it stops: here's the explanation.
Projectors have a special bulb in and everything about this bulb involves the number 300
It tends to draw about 300 watts
Its surroundings heat up to 300 degrees
It costs about £300 to replace
... it's liable to do about 3 times £300 worth of damage to the projector if the power fails ...
The bulb is cooled by a fan, and when it's switched off, the projector needs to dump overboard the heat that remains, hence the fan runs until a thermostat switches it off - this takes about a minute so remember to give the thing time to cool itself.
All before you, in this world, is smoke and shadows.All before you, in this world, is smoke and shadows. Words found on a door lintel in the garden of a house in the Cretan village of Argiroupolis. The lintel is a fragment from the city state Lappa, which occupied the same site. Fifteen hundred years later, when you use the web, from time to time you might well feel that the author was on to something. And if you work with particle physics, you'll know he was ...