Thank you Actual Tools for sending us this program to review!
A couple of months back we redesigned our office and after the dust settled, I got a bigger desk and hooked up a second monitor. For the most part it's been great, but gaming with dual monitors has added a few challenges. For example if I'm playing a game on the left screen and accidentally slide my mouse over to the right one, the game will minimize and stop. Actual Tools Multiple Monitor program stops incidents like that from happening.
My desktop's video card is a HIS 7870 and ATI's drivers support merging your desktop (and games) across multiple monitors. This technology is called Eyefinity. In order to use Eyefinity you have to set up a display group and if you have different model monitors, you'll be stuck at the lower resolution. Actual Multiple Monitors allows you to easily stretch your game across multiple monitors without having to setup this group or being at the same resolution. All you need to do is have your game in windowed mode and click the stretch toolbar icon and there you go. I have noticed that if the game is running at too low of a resolution, the screen will be cut off. Given my that my monitors are at different heights and resolutions, I didn't play in multi-monitor mode very often. If my monitors were the same it would be a different story.
Actual Tools Multiple Monitors adds several enhancements to Windows 8. I liked the option of having the Start menu back on my second monitor. I've already adjusted to the new one but having the old one brings back fond memories. The tool bars have new icons as well and I have already mentioned the stretch icon. Another added icon is "move" which will send the window to the opposite monitor instead of having to drag it over with your mouse.
If you're big into screen savers there are a couple of enhancements made here as well. You can stretch the screen saver to all of the monitors or you can have a different screen saver or slide show on each monitor. Imagine having a sideshow for each child or pet on different monitors.
Gamers will be pleased with the screen or window locking that will prevent games from losing focus while doing other activities on the second monitor. It's nice to be able to be to surf or respond to emails while leaving my game open. Here's a handy list of hot key commands. If you don't like them, you can define your own.
So far I have talked about features that I have used personally. I don't change my desktop settings very often, but if you do, you can setup desktop profiles and switch between them easily. Another neat feature is Mirroring which lets you specify what part of your screen you want to mirror onto another monitor.
Even if you don't take advantage of all of the options, Actual Multiple Monitors has a lot to offer. It's totally worth it to have your games keep focus alone! If you're a Windows 8 user you may like the added bonus of getting your Start menu back. There's a demo available that lets you try it for thirty days.