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How to Do Split Screen on Windows: A Comprehensive Guide

Managing multiple windows efficiently is a crucial skill for increasing productivity on any computer. Windows operating systems have robust features that allow users to split their screens and work with multiple applications simultaneously. This blog post will guide you through the various methods to achieve a split-screen setup on Windows, covering built-in features, shortcuts, and third-party applications.

Introduction to Split Screen on Windows

Split-screen functionality allows you to display and use multiple windows side by side. This can be particularly useful for tasks such as:

  • Comparing documents or images
  • Writing an email while referencing other materials
  • Watching a video while taking notes
  • Dragging and dropping files between folders

Windows provides several built-in ways to manage multiple windows efficiently. Let’s explore these options step by step.

Using Snap Assist in Windows 10 and Windows 11

Snap Assist is a feature in Windows 10 and Windows 11 that makes it easy to arrange windows on your screen. Here’s how to use it:

Snap Windows to the Sides

  1. Open the windows you want to use: Ensure all the applications or files you want to work with are open.
  2. Select the first window: Click on the title bar of the window you want to snap.
  3. Snap to the left or right:
    • Windows 10/11: Drag the window to the left or right edge of the screen until you see a translucent outline. Release the mouse button to snap the window into place.
    • Alternatively, use the keyboard shortcut: Press Windows Key + Left Arrow or Windows Key + Right Arrow.

Snap Windows to the Corners

You can also snap windows to the corners to have up to four applications visible at once.

  1. Drag the window to a corner: Click and drag the window to one of the four corners of the screen until you see the translucent outline.
  2. Release to snap: Release the mouse button to snap the window into the corner.
  3. Repeat for other windows: Do the same for the other windows to fill up to four quadrants of your screen.

Using Snap Assist for Quick Organization

Snap Assist can help you choose another window to fill the remaining screen space:

  1. Snap the first window: Snap your first window to one side or corner.
  2. Select from the remaining windows: Snap Assist will display thumbnails of your remaining open windows. Click on one to snap it into the available space.

Using the Task View and Virtual Desktops

Windows also offers virtual desktops to help manage multiple tasks more effectively.

Accessing Task View

  1. Open Task View: Click on the Task View button on the taskbar (next to the Start button) or press Windows Key + Tab.
  2. Create a new desktop: Click on + New desktop at the top of the Task View screen.

Moving Windows Between Desktops

  1. Drag and drop windows: In Task View, drag windows from one desktop to another.
  2. Switch between desktops: Press Windows Key + Ctrl + Left Arrow or Windows Key + Ctrl + Right Arrow to switch between desktops.

Using Keyboard Shortcuts for Efficient Navigation

Keyboard shortcuts can significantly speed up the process of managing windows.

Common Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Snap window to the left: Windows Key + Left Arrow
  • Snap window to the right: Windows Key + Right Arrow
  • Maximize window: Windows Key + Up Arrow
  • Minimize window: Windows Key + Down Arrow
  • Switch between open windows: Alt + Tab
  • Switch between desktops: Windows Key + Ctrl + Left/Right Arrow

Using Third-Party Applications for Advanced Split-Screen Functionality

While Windows provides robust built-in features, third-party applications can offer more advanced options and customization.

FancyZones in Microsoft PowerToys

FancyZones is a utility within Microsoft PowerToys that allows for more flexible window layouts.

Installing Microsoft PowerToys

  1. Download PowerToys: Visit the Microsoft PowerToys GitHub page and download the installer.
  2. Install PowerToys: Run the installer and follow the prompts.

Setting Up FancyZones

  1. Open PowerToys: Launch the PowerToys application.
  2. Configure FancyZones: Go to the FancyZones section and click on Launch layout editor.
  3. Choose a layout: Select a pre-defined layout or create a custom layout.
  4. Apply the layout: Drag windows into the designated zones to snap them into place.

Other Third-Party Tools

There are several other third-party tools available that provide additional split-screen features:

  • AquaSnap: Provides more snapping options and window management features.
  • Divvy: Offers grid-based window management for precise control.
  • GridMove: Allows for custom grid layouts to organize windows.

Tips for Effective Split-Screen Usage

Adjust Display Settings

For an optimal split-screen experience, ensure your display settings are configured correctly.

  1. Access Display Settings: Right-click on the desktop and select Display settings.
  2. Adjust resolution and scaling: Make sure your display resolution and scaling are set to comfortable levels for your screen size.

Use Multiple Monitors

Using multiple monitors can enhance productivity by providing more screen real estate.

  1. Connect the monitors: Plug in additional monitors and ensure they are recognized by your computer.
  2. Configure display settings: Go to Display settings and arrange the monitors to match your physical setup.
  3. Extend the display: Select Extend these displays to use multiple monitors as an extended workspace.

Practice and Customize

Spend some time practicing these techniques and customizing your setup to find what works best for you. Experiment with different layouts and tools to enhance your workflow.


Mastering the split-screen functionality in Windows can significantly boost your productivity by allowing you to multitask efficiently. Whether you use the built-in Snap Assist feature, keyboard shortcuts, or third-party applications like FancyZones, there are plenty of options to help you manage multiple windows effectively. Take the time to explore these methods and find the ones that best suit your workflow. Happy multitasking!

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