upsidedown My favorite support call this month came from a client reporting that everything onscreen had turned upside down. The little monitor controls that come up when you fiddle with the buttons on the monitor were right side up but everything else was upside down. He had literally been forced to turn the monitor upside down to be able to work.


I have to admit, I didn’t know that some video adapters can rotate displays 180 degrees. Sure, 90 degrees, that makes sense, you can rotate a widescreen display from landscape to portrait and work on a long document. Nobody does that but it makes sense that it’s possible. But why would you rotate the display 180 degrees?

It turns out that not only can some video adapters do that, but there’s a shortcut key – hitting Ctrl-Alt-Up Arrow will turn the displays upside down on some computers. Hit the keys again to flip it back. We decided my client had hit those keys by accident while he was reaching for Ctrl-Alt-Del. There are other shortcut keys and other ways to get to those controls – here’s one summary of how it works.

It won’t work very often but if you walk around the office you might find some computers nearby that can be flipped around with just a keystroke as you walk by. You might want to experiment with that as an important part of understanding technical support issues in your workplace, because you definitely would not want to use it as a harmless but disruptive prank or Halloween joke – that would be mean, right?

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