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Mini DisplayPort on new docking station doesn't work

Chris Broughton

New Member
I just unpacked my docking station for the SP3 and the mini displayport doesn't work. I have 2 monitors with displayport to mini displayport cables. One plugged into the Surface, one into the dock, just like Microsoft has shown in their blog posts.

The one out of the Surface works, is detected by Windows just fine. The dock one is not recognized by Windows and I can't force it to. If I swap the cables to the opposite ports the broken monitor works and the other doesn't. That rules out the cable and monitor, all of those are working.

Does anyone else have a malfunctioning dock?
Hmm. It sounds like the docking station is faulty, but let's run another test just for the heck of it.

First, shut down your SP3 and remove all connections and then restart it (this means out of the dock, also).

Next, have one of your monitors plugged into the dock connector and powered on. Then, remove power from the dock, wait a few seconds, and repower it.

Finally, place the SP3 (now powered up) into the dock.

Does the monitor come to life? Did the SP3 try to load any additional drivers?

If it's still not working, while the SP3 remains in the dock, go into Device Manager and see if anything is flagged as not working (it will have a little yellow circle with an exclamation mark in it next to the device icon).

If you find anything suspicious in Device Manager you can uninstall it and then rescan for hardware changes and see if it will reinstall correctly.

If, after all of this, the monitor still doesn't work, then I would assume that it needs to be replaced.
I am also experiencing a problem with the mini DisplayPort on my Surface Pro 3 dock. I am connecting a HP ZR30w monitor via a mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort adapter. I have no problems if I connect to the port on my SP3; however, if I connect through the dock, the external monitor will flicker on and off slowly. There are no warnings in the Device Manager.
Ignore anything you hear from Microsoft Support, they have been useless in this matter. From what I can gather the dock does not support mDP to Displayport. I have been dealing with this same issue myself. I have now tried 3 different brand mDP to DP cables, as well as one that is older (1.1). All of them except the 1.1 work perfectly fine plugged in to the surface but will not put out video when plugged in to the dock. Using the same dock, same monitor, with a mDP to HDMI cable it works fine.

Windows does see the monitor when plugged in to the dock, it even recognizes the model correctly, but it will not expend/clone to it and will not put out any video. it also sets the resolution to 1024x768 (even on the surface display) and regardless of setttings changed does not put out any video.

From my MANY, many hours of testing so far I can only conclude that the dock does not work correctly with Displayport. It is quite annoying, and baffling.

I spent over 4 hours with Support sending them pictures and info and in the end they came back and told me the Monoprice mDP to HDMI adapter I was using is not compatible (which works perfectly fine and had nothing to do with the problem).
Oh you're kidding - I just pushed the buy button on an extra pair of Dell monitors for home selected quite specifically for MST chaining off the SP3, immediately before coming here for a health check on today's firmware update.
I don't have a dock yet, but the symptoms ex Windows (and level of usefulness from Support) seem quite similar to the issues I had with the port on the SP3 here http://www.surfaceforums.net/posts/70823/, which a new 1.2 cable did remedy.
Would be real nice if windows actually said something more useful than 'theres some 1024 x 768 thing at the end of some cable....'
I'm having the same issue. I have a mini display port to VGA adapter that I purchased from Microsoft specifically for the Surface 3. It works fine when plugging directly into the Surface 3. But the docking station won't recognize it. Spent hours with Microsoft support and they decided to send me a replacement. But I'm not confident the replacement will work either. If anyone figures out a solution please post here!
I'm having the same issue. I have a mini display port to VGA adapter that I purchased from Microsoft specifically for the Surface 3. It works fine when plugging directly into the Surface 3. But the docking station won't recognize it.

That's discouraging to hear.

mDP to DVI isn't working for me out of dock (works fine out of mDP port on SP3). I was hoping to try VGA later today when I could grab my mDP/VGA adapter and cables from my office; doesn't sound promising. Really hoping this is a firmware issue. I've tried the power down suggestion, disconnecting everything, repeatedly checked for updates (no more show as available), no yellow firmware update flags, etc.

EDIT: decided to request an RMA; I don't have hours to spend on the phone with Support. Will wait a few days before actually shipping it back to see if MS sorts this out and a general solution Surfaces. :)
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I've tried plugging the dock into a powered up Surface with nothing but the monitor and I have no change. The monitor still isn't recognized.

I haven't tried any other mDP adapters, like to VGA, to DVI, or to HDMI but user crawlgsx made it sound like he does have the dock working with a mDP to HDMI. I don't have an HDMI monitor to test this with unfortunately.

Over night I also noticed a power issue. With my Surface in the dock the power icon beside the clock says "Plugged in not charging". The battery also seems to be dropping quickly, a few percent in a few minutes.

Is anyone else seeing power issues as well?
In my case, the monitor is recognized, but just stays dark. The model shows up under my display settings, I can move the configurations around, change resolution, and I can move the mouse off SP3 monitor in extended mode -- just doesn't show up in the extended screen. As mentioned, if I plug the exact same adapter and connections into the mDP port on the SP3, all is well.

I'm actually going to be replacing the monitor soon anyway; will see if a different configuration and more current monitor works.

Haven't noticed a power issue though.
I just got my dock yesterday. I have a mDP to VGA adapter and it works fine to run an external monitor directly from the SP3 or via the mDP port on the dock. I don't have a 2nd monitor so I haven't been able to test connecting a monitor to each of the mDP ports to see if that works.

Are people saying that they can't get any monitor to work using the dock's mDP port?