When I ended up using Windows to power the overhead information screens at Last.fm, I lost the ability to have a one line crontab entry that shut the monitors into DPMS standby (and wake them up) when we’re in and out of office hours. Makes no sense wasting power, but more importantly shortening the length of screens having them on when the office is empty.
I didn’t think I would have any issue finding a utility to place the screens in to standby mode. I didn’t; but unfortunately they were either not free, massively complicated or simply didn’t work.
So I found a code snippet online, fired up a copy of Visual Studio and compiled two exe files; MonitorOn.exe and MonitorOff.exe. MonitorOff sends a signal to all attached monitors on the system to go in to sleep mode, and if you move the mouse you can wake them up as normal. Or you can run MonitorOn which will send the signal manually. Simply place these into the Windows Task Scheduler, and you have a simple, effective way to manage your information screens.