How to Fix a Sideways Screen on Your Windows Computer

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Perhaps it happened when you plugged in or detached an external monitor. Maybe you just hit the wrong key somehow, but now your Windows desktop is sideways, positioned in portrait mode while your screen is in landscape (horizontal) view. You can't even read the text without tilting your head or turning your display on its side. 

Sideways Screen

Fortunately, there are a couple of ways to fix a sideways screen in Windows; these methods work in Windows 7, 8 and 10. 

Rotate Screen with a Keyboard Shortcut

Hit CTRL + ALT + Up Arrow and your Windows desktop should return to landscape mode. You can rotate the screen to portrait or upside-down landscape, by hitting CTRL + ALT + Left Arrow, Right Arrow or Down arrow.

Fix Sideways Screen With Display Settings Menu

If, for some reason, the shortcut keys don't work (and they should), try this method.

1. Right click on the desktop and selct Display settings.

Display Settings

2. Choose a screen to fix if you have multiple monitors attached. Skip this step if you have only one.

3. Select Landscape from the orientation menu.

Lanscape mode

4. Click Apply (or OK)

Click Apply

 

5. Click Keep Changes when prompted.

Keep changes

Windows 10 Annoyances and Problems

 

Author Bio
Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of Laptopmag.com since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director on
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30 comments
  • PHIL B. Says:

    Your advice helped! Thank you! God Bless You and Yours, Phil

  • Couszi Says:

    I always hope for the best when I opt a fixit. This was Epic Score! From search to ctrl+alt+^ less than two minutes. Swell Site!

  • emily Says:

    frustrating problem, even quicker and direct response. Appreciate it a lot thank you!

  • Ryan Mott Says:

    Thanks alot, I just utilized alt + ctrl + up arrow and it worked. You guys are great. This was a life saver! Thank you

  • Guerry Nine Says:

    Thanks a lot. I just did it and it worked. And I was using the library computer:)

  • Liz Bruton Says:

    Absolutely marvellous. Thank you very much. 😻

  • irishmae concepcion Says:

    THANK YOU SO MUCH ..

    IT REALLY WORKED. I WAS SUPPOSED TO TAKE MY LAPTOP TO THE SHOP😂

  • Rancatore Says:

    Have done both methods. Windows 10; It restores it to Landscape mode. As I am typing an email or in Word it will automatically jump to sideways or totally upside down. Any other suggestions on what could be causing this?

    Thanks

  • Heather Heinzeroth Says:

    Thank you!!!!!!! My two-year-old was pressing buttons and when I restarted it was sideways this was a lifesaver!!!

  • John Prendiville (Windows 10) Says:

    Thank you Mr Piltch. The first method worked for me, 'cept I can't get my head back straight.

  • vazha Says:

    Thank you so much............................................................................................

  • Shymona Says:

    OMG thank you sooooooooo much! I accidentally made the screen go sideways and I got really scared and terrified. You helped me soooo much, unlike an a****** I know.

  • Reshma Says:

    Thankyou so much.... This really helped from getting into trouble 😁

  • Rutherford Says:

    Thanks so much! This was super helpful, I freaked when this happened but gosh, it's back to normal now!

  • Eric Kong Says:

    I have try on shortcut key by hitting ctrl+alt+arrow key, but the screen is not rotate. May I know what is going wrong with my computer?

  • Lee Sherwood Says:

    Thank you so much! Perfect fix!

  • Maria Says:

    Question: Any idea how to make the "log in screen" keep open after the password introduced and opened the desktop screen?

    The screen closes as soon as 30 minutes no in use.

    It is a ASUS Model F55CSX017X, Window 10 installed on original Window 8.

    It is so much lost productivity! and is annoying. Perhaps some one knows how.

  • Maria Says:

    After hours of no idea what to do, after downloading information about shortcuts in form of PDFs No idea how to seek, Put motion? put pointer? Eventually this site appeared. THANKS SO MUCH. the Word rotate could be included and in shortcuts keyboard keys could be included.
    great. Thanks very much.

  • CharlesM Says:

    Thanks so much. Was playing with the back of the external keyboard only to look up and see a flipped screen. Used another computer to search for help. Great advice.

  • BionicTim Says:

    That saved a trip to the computer repair shop!
    Thank you so much!

  • supercjtaco Says:

    your words were gold, it fixed my problem as you said it should. Thank you very much.

  • Karen Cioffi Says:

    THANK YOU!

    I was getting a stiff neck trying to fix it.

  • Complex Says:

    You should make sure that "Lock rotation of this display" is set On to avoid it from keep rotating even after you use Ctrl+Alt +(Up|Down|Left|Right)

  • Shadowlit Says:

    Phew! I was clearing a bit of water off my control key and the screen turned sideways. this saved me!

  • annoyed user Says:

    what an idiot invented such default keyboard shortcut, I accidentally pushed it and my laptop's screen rotated without warning, damn!!

  • Elizabeth Says:

    Thank you! I moved my laptop and it suddenly send sideways. I didn't realize I'd pushed any keys so this fixed it right away.

  • david cox Says:

    I have a emachine using windows 7 and I can not set my screen to go full left when using e mail I have tried using the mouse but it will not move completely left so I do not see full text & am unable to move up or down using side control
    as it is not in view PLEASE HELP Dave

  • Roberta Laboy Says:

    my computer screen went sideways help

  • Dee22222 Says:

    Thx for the tip! It really saved me 'cos I didn't have time for some complex fixes.

  • Jeff Robarge Says:

    Un-freaking-believable!!#! Never have I even imagined this kind of BS issue....

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