[R-sig-Debian] [OT] What file can I use to change Ubuntu 9.10 display characteristics?

Johannes Ranke jranke at uni-bremen.de
Sat Dec 5 17:14:41 CET 2009


I am using Kubuntu 9.10 on my netbook without xorg.conf and I can confirm that 
the Xserver listens to what xrandr tells it (in my case this is
xrandr --output VGA1 --right-off LVDS1). Only if I use the KDE4 configuration 
tool after that, the xserver reverts to cloning the desktop on VGA which only 
makes sense if the resolutions match or are matched. The latter was no problem 
in my case - I just set the resolution from 1368x768 to 1024x768 with this 
tool, which leaves me with a stretched and blurred desktop on the panel. I can 
also resize
using xrandr --output LVDS1 --mode 1024x768.

Kind regards and good luck,


Am Freitag, 4. Dezember 2009 20:56:30 schrieb Dirk Eddelbuettel:
> On 4 December 2009 at 13:24, Douglas Bates wrote:
> | This question is vaguely related to R in that I have managed to wedge
> | the netbook computer that I use for demonstrations of R and I would
> | like to know how to un-wedge it so I can continue to give lectures
> | about R.
> |
> | I have an ASUS eee PC running the netbook-remix version of Ubuntu
> | 9.10.  The X server in 9.10 is a little different from earlier
> | versions in that it does not require an explicit configuration file
> | for the X server ( /etc/X11/xorg.conf, IIRC) as it can autoconfigure.
> | That it did fine.
> |
> | When I attached the netbook to the VGA input for the video projector
> | in a lecture hall I found that it dropped the resolution to 640 x 480,
> | which is undesirably coarse.  I decided to tinker and see if I could
> | get it to 800 x 600 on both the built-in display and the video
> | projector.  I used the GUI application accessed through the menu
> | sequence System -> Preferences -> Display.
> |
> | I believe that at one point I actually got things working that way
> | but, of course, I couldn't leave well-enough alone and decided to try
> | to get a resolution with 768 lines as I knew the projector supported
> | that.  That was when it all went south.  The system froze with a blank
> | screen and blank projector output.  I needed to do a hard power-down
> | and reboot without the projector plugged in.  Fortunately I didn't
> | lose the disk (I run ext2 file systems as a journaled file system puts
> | too much wear on the solid-state disk) and I can use the computer
> | without an external display.
> |
> | Now I can use the netbook when it is not connected to an external VGA
> | display but as soon as I connect the external VGA it freezes,
> | presumably because it is trying to use an unsupported video mode.  The
> | information on the video modes I selected must be stored somewhere but
> | I can't find out where.  Does anyone know where that GUI application
> | caches its information?  All this GUI configuration is great unless
> | the thing you are trying to configure is the display and you can't get
> | that working.  In the old days when you needed to edit a text-based
> | configuration file you had a fighting chance of doing that even if you
> | could only get the barest of systems, a text console device, running.
> Try the 'randr' frontends.  I have used both xrandr (from a package of the
> same name) and the KRandR frontend in KDE on both my older laptop (where I
> learned about xrandr during UseR :) and my netbook which has a nice but
> non-standard 'hd' resolution of 1366 x 768. The last time I connected it to
>  a projector I think I simply selected a lower (and more standard)
>  resolution from the KRandR applet in the panel.  Oh, and that was with a
>  pre-release of Ubuntu 9.10.  Gnome appears to have packages
>  'gnome-randr-applet' and 'grandr'.
> And as I understand it, there is no configuration.  X11 now does everything
> dynamically.  But I could be wrong.  In fact, that is quite likely as I
> hardware and I usually try our best to ignore each other ...
> Dirk

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