Surface Book 2 + Surface Dock = Problem

I rarely get worked up enough to rant on the internet.  Surface Book 2 and Surface dock have pushed me over the edge.

If you're thinking about using the Surface Dock with your Surface Book 2 you may wish to read this.  I'm using the surface dock with dual external monitors.  I close the lid and usually both external monitors work fine.  Except when they don't.

Here are a list of problems I've experienced with this dock, sometimes multiple at once:

  • Wrong resolution on one external monitor
  • Laptop insists on using it's built-in display instead of my second dual monitor (with the lid closed!).  The only way to resolve this seems to be opening and shutting the lid.  Causing me to have to log on again.  Can you feel how frustrating this would be?
  • Login screen shows up on the *closed* laptop lid where you can't see it
  • Bluetooth connectivity, to my Microsoft bluetooth mouse, mysteriously disappears.  No bluetooth.  Rebooting is the only cure.
  • One monitor gets into a flickering loop, the other stays dark.
  • Attempts to restart sometimes idle for 15, 30, even 45 minutes.  Just the restart screen with that spinning circle leering at me.
  • When the restart finally crashes, i get a Blue Screen of Death.  Yes, that's right folks, the BSOD still exists in 2018.  Except they added a frowny emoji because that's what the cool kids do

At least three or four times a week I have to go through this ten minute battle to get dual monitors and mouse working.  It's become my morning coffee ritual.  

If anyone at Microsoft is reading this, please fix the numerous Surface Dock issues that myself and other users are reporting here.  The Surface Book 2 is a fine device...until you plug it into the dock and everything goes haywire.

 

Question Info


Last updated December 13, 2018 Views 1,460 Applies to:

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Hi,

I can offer a few suggestions based on my experience.

First I recommend that you leave your Surface Book open as it will not get good airflow for cooling when closed.

Second in display settings disable the surface monitor (it will automatically turn on when you unplug the dock).

Third go to Device Manager bluetooth Marvel AVASTAR radio adapter power settings and uncheck allow the computer to turn off this device to save power.

Fourth go to the Support link at the top of this page Surface Devices, Dock, Surface Dock updater and run it to make sure you have the latest firmware. Be sure nothing is plugged into the dock when updating.

Best,

Martin

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Wow, thanks @MartinGoldsmith.  

I'm really disappointed that I have to run this machine with the lid open all the time.  I don't have a ton of room on my desk to begin with.  

I guess I'll get used to disabling the monitor in the settings every time I dock up.

Also why is the OS turning off the bluetooth adapter to "save power" when it is plugged in??? That doesn't make any sense at all.  Bluetooth is not a huge power drain.  it should only be disabled to save power when unplugged.

I'll try the dock firmware update.  Hopefully that helps.

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Hi,

The air intake and exhaust are in the hinge area. For limited use enough air gets in with the display closed because of the gap but not enough for serious use.

You shouldn't need to change your display settings back and forth. As I mentioned the Surface display will come back on when you disconnect the dock even if it's disabled in the multi monitor settings.

The Bluetooth power setting is a driver setting so it would probably be difficult to automatically switch. 

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Ok, it seems to be holding up with desktop extended across displays #2 and #3.  It would have been nice if Microsoft documented this somewhere.  Surely there are others like me who have two external monitors.

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Just think of the internet as your manual and user guide. There are a lot of useful tools if you use the Support link at the top of the page. There are some great third party help sites as well.

One thing to keep in mind. DO NOT download any drivers from anyone but Microsoft. Half the problems on this site are from people who installed GeForce or drivers from Nvidia or Intel. 

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Well, that's cute:  "Just think of the internet as your manual and user guide. There are a lot of useful tools if you use the Support link at the top of the page. There are some great third party help sites as well."

But it's a bit of a cop-out.  This should be in the Surface Book 2 documentation.  

Are you a Microsoft employee?  If not can you point out where in the *offcial* Microsoft support that it says you should never run the laptop with the lid closed?

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Lol! No I'm not a Microsoft employee. I agree a complete manual installed in the PC would be nice. I read a review of the machine that conducted temperature tests and the they found the temperature went way up with the lid closed. Heat = wear in electronic devices. Considering what I paid for the machine I want it to last a long time. If you're just surfing the web or word processing it's not a problem but it you're gaming or using applications that require the high performance processor you want maximum cooling.

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Well I appreciate your patience and taking the time to respond here.  I really do like my Surface Book, it's just the dock experience that's been frustrating.

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No Problem, Participating in the forum can be fun.

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Thank you for this discussion and tips. I have been having similar problems with 2 external monitors. I have Samsung 24" SF350 monitors, connected to the two mini DV ports. I just updated the surface dock firmware, so hoping I will not have any more issues.

My issues have been:

1. starting the surface book2 when connected to the dock

2. surface book 2 gets too warm even when completely shut down and disconnected from the dock. Something is running in the background but I can't figure out what.

3. Monitors not showing their correct resolution.

Must say that this is very annoying. I switched to Surface book 2 from macbook pro for business reasons and so far I have been very disappointed.

Thanks for all the help

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