Some time ago I mounted my old monitor to the wall and configured my system for dual head. With NVidia 7300GT card setup was easy — Twinview handled it quite ok after fixing configuration so panels were properly setup and located:
- 24″ on the left with 1920×1080 resolution as primary display
- 20″ on the right with 1680×1050
But after few days I decided that enough is enough. From time to time I had X11 session where maximizing window == placing it on two monitors (which was pain when second one was off or switched to BeagleBoard output). I do not have to add how uncomfortable it was…
So after discussion with few friends I decided to give a chance to ATI and bought Radeon HD5450 card. It is nearly cheapest card on that chipset (I bought DDR3 one instead of cheap DDR2 one) but it feels faster then GeForce 7300GT which I was using before.
But dual head setup is still a problem. Ok, X11 can now start without “/etc/X11/xorg.conf” file (I needed it with NVidia card) but after X session start I need to use XRandR to:
- switch panels to native resolution (instead of 1680×1050 for both)
- change orientation (20″ on the right to 24″ instead of cloning)
And then I have few strange things in system:
- KDE panel does not enlarge with resolution change
- RSIBreak blackout is only on 1680×1050 area of 24″ panel
So it looks like in near time I will continue fight with creation of proper “xorg.conf” file to get my displays configured properly out-of-box. I wonder when situation will change as it looks now that there is no standardized way to tell which display is which in configuration file (both panels are Samsung, both give “SAM” as name in EDID).
As we plan to move from Poznań to Szczecin this week we are spending at Ania’s parents house.
To have better work equipment then my Dell D400 laptop I grabbed some unused components from home to build computer. The list was not so long:
- 120GB ATA hard disk (it was system one some time ago)
- DFI RS482 mainboard with 2.1GB ram and Athlon64 X2 cpu (my previous desktop)
- cpu cooler
- PS/2 mouse (which I used before buying wireless one)
- power supply
- USB->Serial adapter and some other USB gadgets
- some cables
The only thing which was needed to make it computer was case. And this shown that Szczecin lacks good computer shops — I had to visit 4 of them just to buy decent case as most of time they only had cheap ones.
Anyway I am using this machine for few days now (connected to old 17″ CRT which I used in 2006) with on-board ATI graphics card. It has many names… “RS485, ATI Radeon x1250 Chipset” etc… And this is crap never mind which drivers are used ;(
First I started with “xf86-video-ati” one. Version shipped in Debian ‘sid’ (6.8.0) is very old and reports that I have the same monitor connected to VGA and DVI outputs. Result is not funny. Driver from “experimental” is much better. But 1024×768@85Hz resolution which is default is not so nice — 1280×1024@85Hz is much better but needs to be set by XRandR call or tweaking of X11 config file.
So I tried to use official ATI driver: “fglrx”. As usual it required patching to build with last release kernel (2.6.25) but patches are already in Debian so it took less time then my last fight with NVidia driver. Effect is also strange — this time monitor started in 2048×1536@60Hz which is just insane on 17″ CRT. After switching with XRandR to sane 1280×1024@85Hz it is much more usable.
Good side is that I do not need to use this machine too often so it will stay like it is for some time. When we move it will be one of my build machines.
And if I ever will have to use it I will put NVidia card into this — they at least works perfect in X11.
Recently my machine got series of instability problems. Current situation is — machine stable if Geforce 6600GT card removed. But this leaves me with ATI RS482 on-board graphics… And this chipset just suxx!
I use free driver — ‘radeon’ one. Does it works? Sort of. Problems noticed:
- lack of EDID reading — so my 22″ lcd panel works in 1280×768 mode instead of 1680×1050
- unreadable screen after switching to VT
- X11 crash if qemu/SDL started
- X11 crash if MPlayer with ‘x11’ driver used
- X11 crash if VirtualBox started any virtual machine
Is it usable? Only if there is no other way. But I will rather work on getting my Geforce card working again then trying to get that ATI crap working properly.
TIP: to get 1680×1050 resolution working few commands needs to be run:
xrandr --newmode "1680x1050R" 119.00 1680 1728 1760 1840 1050 1053 1059 1080 +hsync -vsync
xrandr --addmode DVI-0 "1680x1050R"
xrandr --output DVI-0 --mode "1680x1050R"
Anyway according to XRandR there are no monitors connected at all:
12:36 hrw@home:~$ xrandr
Screen 0: minimum 320 x 200, current 1680 x 1050, maximum 2560 x 1200
VGA-0 disconnected 1280x768+0+0 (normal left inverted right x axis y axis) 0mm x 0mm
DVI-0 disconnected 1680x1050+0+0 (normal left inverted right x axis y axis) 0mm x 0mm
S-video disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
1280x768 (0x41) 80.1MHz
h: width 1280 start 1344 end 1480 total 1680 skew 0 clock 47.7KHz
v: height 768 start 769 end 772 total 795 clock 60.0Hz
Today there was a sale in local MediaMarkt. I decided to go there to look how much it was destroyed by wild crowd.
When I was at the shop there were only a bit more people then usual — no signs of wild crowd, no destroyed stuff.. But they had one nice thing (which was also one of reasons why I was there): Samsung 205B Wide LCD monitor for 999 PLN (about 260 EUR) and I bought one.
At home I replaced my Samsung 17″ CRT with this new 20″ widescreen LCD and booted. 1280×1024 (my usual resolution) was not so good and after edition of
xorg.conf I got 1680×1050 resolution and this is it. More space for windows, more space during reading of documents etc.
And all of that without any problems with gfx card — I use ATI x200 integrated into mainboard chipset and closed
fglrx driver (did not checked does opensource driver support this resolution but I think that it should).