While the Microsoft Surface Dock may be the go-to device or more premium (read expensive) option for connecting your Surface Book or Surface Pro 4 to your desktop environment, it may not be the most efficient.
There are a number of issues with the Surface Dock that will only become apparent once you attempt to get things all connected and working.
- The Surface Dock does not support dual 4K monitors
- DisplayPort 1.2 MST and daisy chained monitors are not supported – a monitor must be directly connected to each of the ports on the Surface Dock
- There are multiple monitors that are not supported or are documented as having issues.
- The previously released DisplayPort to HDMI adapters for the Surfaces will not work due to the angled plastic shielding on the plug.
Microsoft has a troubleshooting guide for the Surface Dock here
The Surface Dock is a firmware upgradable device, the Surface Dock Update program can be found here and you can run this to attempt to update the dock to better support your monitors or to fix other potential issues.
Here is a list of currently unsupported monitors
|Dell||U2312HM (FW A05)
U2412Mb (FW A01)
U2414Hb (FW A00)
U2515Hc (FW A01)
U2715Hc (FW A00)
U2913Wm (FW A03)
Microsoft also recommends alternative cabling options and the use of Active adapters vs passive.
Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable – Cable Matters Gold Plated Mini DisplayPort (Thunderbolt Port Compatible) to DisplayPort Cable, Black, 6 Feet (101007)
Mini DisplayPort to HDMI – Cable Matters Gold Plated Active Mini DisplayPort to HDMI Male to Female Adapter 4k support
Mini DisplayPort to DVI Male Active Adapter – Cable Matters Active Mini DisplayPort to DVI Male to Female Adapter
If you have no luck getting your monitor configuration working despite all of the support options listed above you could consider using an alernative display dock system utilizing DisplayLink via USB such as thr UD-5900 and UD-3900 by Plugable. More information on these devices may be found here. the Plugable devices offer the same functionality as the Surface Dock but connect via the USB 3.0 port vs the Surface blade connector. Both options have networking and multi monitor support.