5 Minute HelpDesk – Why is My Screen Upside Down?

This is a common query we get asked on the help desk. Imagine you are working at 2 am in the morning, trying to get your monthly report out and your screen is upside down…! Maybe you turned your screen by accidentally hitting some keys. Or a colleague played a prank on you. Or perhaps you need to rotate your screen to view it vertically or from another angle. Here’s what you can do in Windows, macOS and Chrome OS to rotate a computer screen (or to set it right).

For Windows

If you have an Intel graphics adapter, the easiest way to rotate your screen is with keyboard shortcuts.

Using keyboard shortcuts

  • To rotate your screen to the default position (horizontal orientation) – hold and press Ctrl + Alt + Up arrow.
  • To rotate 90 degrees - Ctrl +  Alt + Right arrow
  • To flip upside down (or rotate 180 degrees ) - Ctrl +  Alt + Down arrow
  • To rotate 270 degrees – hold and press Ctrl +  Alt + Left arrow

If you can’t get your screen to rotate with these shortcut keys, check the Intel Graphics Settings. Right-click on your desktop, and from the options select Intel Graphics Settings. Click Options → Support → Hot Key Manager. If your PC has screen rotation shortcuts, you should be able to view them here. If you don’t have the shortcut keys, you can use the next method.

Use the Screen Resolution or Properties screen

Right-click on the desktop and select Screen Resolution or Properties. Click on Display → Display Orientation. From the options, choose the one that you need.

  • Landscape: Rotates screen to the default orientation.
  • Portrait: Rotates 270 degrees - will be vertical.
  • Landscape (flipped): Flips upside-down or 180 degrees.
  • Portrait (flipped): Rotates 90 degrees – will be vertical and upside-down.

Pressing Esc on the keyboard will give you the screen orientation you had before.

How the screen can be rotated depends on the graphics card your system has. For NVIDIA and AMD/ATI cards, right-click on the desktop and select the control panels. Click on respective Display options → Rotate and select your desired option from the list, similar to the Intel Graphic card mentioned above.

For macOS

The process for screen rotation depends on the OS version you are using.
Click on Apple Menu → System Preferences

For Mavericks 10.9 or earlier – force the Mac to rotate any connected display.

  • Hold ‘Command’ + ‘Option’ → Display → Rotate
  • Select the orientation you require.

For Yosemite – only supported displays can be rotated.

  • Click on displays → Rotate

Note - ‘Command’ + ‘Option’ to go to Display will end up in a bug.

  • If the Rotate menu is not available, it means your display does not support rotating.
  • Open ‘Arrangement’ tab and uncheck ‘Mirrors Display’. This prevents attached multiple displays from rotating when you rotate a single display.

For Chrome OS

Press Ctrl + Shift + Rotate to rotate your screen 90 degrees. Each repeat will rotate screen 90 degrees. Continue till you get the required display.

Need help with IT issues? Our IT helpdesk supports you 24/7. Contact us or email at helpdesk@computingaustralia.group.for any assistance with your IT queries.

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Jargon Buster for today

Graphics card – computer hardware that produces the image on your screen by converting data into a signal.

Bug – here, an error or flaw in a computer hardware or software that produces an unexpected result.