Dual screen configuration – first pass

OK, as a first pass at getting my two graphics cards working in a dual head mode I’ve made the following key changes to my XF86Config-4 file. This is by no means exhaustive, but should give a few reference notes to refer to. A HantsLUG wiki entry is planned 🙂

First off the Device sections. I had an original one for my NVidia card along these lines:

Section "Device"
        Identifier      "NVidia GeForce MX 440"
        Driver          "vesa"
#       Driver          "nv"
#       Driver          "nvidia"
        Option          "UseFBDev"              "true"
        BusID           "PCI:1:0:0"

Note that the two commented out lines are due to switches back and forth with the NVidia drivers. So far the vesa one is the only on that has consistently worked and for my usage is doing me fine for now!

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Old Monitors

I finally hooked up a pair of old monitors onto my computer system last night which resulted in a small ‘yay’. It may seem a bit odd putting old monitors on, but the ones they replaced (an old Dell 17″ Trinitron and an ADI Microscan GT56 – again 17″ Trinitron) weren’t really that much newer, if at all. Sadly these two screens don’t appear to have built in anti-glare, but they are still nice Trinitron tubes. The screens are a matching pair of Iiyama Vision Master Pro 400 17″ monitors that I picked up from Jamies, so that must beg the question, “what was the point of switching?”.

Well these screens have dual inputs instead of the usual captive lead or single D-Sub. They still have the D-Sub, but in addition they have a set of 5 BNC connectors. This allows me to use a different lead that I’ve had kicking around for some time unused to connect to the computer, but more importantly it allows me to connect two computers at the same time and switch between them and therefore saves me a £200 outlay on a KVM (the cost of a Belkin twin screen USB keyboard and mouse unit with necessary cables). Although it doesn’t give me keyboard and mouse switching it does have one advantage over the KVM – it allows me to switch the screens individually.

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