Display Issues or Black screen when I establish a remote session to a headless Windows PC?


It only shows a black screen when you try to establish a remote session to a headless Windows computer. Or, you see other display issues such as app windows showing blank or improperly, the Windows Start menu displaying tiny..

Could also apply if your monitor/display is powered off, or laptop lid is closed, thus simulating a headless computer.

This is not a common case and for most of the cases we could connect to a headless Windows computer without issue. However if you see this happens, please try the workarounds below.


Workaround - Virtual Display

Please refer to this article for more information: Virtual display

Starting from Splashtop Streamer versions later than, the workaround outlined below will no longer be available. 

  • On the streamer computer, go to this file path:
    • C:\Program Files (x86)\Splashtop\Splashtop Remote\Server\Driver\LciDisplay
  • Right-click "install_driver64.bat" (for 64-bit OS) or "install_driver.bat" (for 32-bit OS) and run as Administrator
  • Establish a remote session to the computer.
    • After installing the driver, it will create a virtual display when a remote session is established, named SP-DSP00. E.g., if remote system is a headless one, you will have one display; if it is dual-monitor system, there will be three.
    • The newly created display is with 720P resolution. Unfortunately this is the highest resolution we currently support with the driver.
    • This should resolve the black screen issue when remote system is a headless one.
    • This should resolve the display issues when remote system is a headless one, i.e. blank windows.
    • Besides uninstalling the driver, there is a key “VirtualDisplay” to turn on/off the driver.
      • 1=on, 0=off.
        (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Splashtop Inc.\Splashtop Remote Server)
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