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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


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Old 06-19-2009, 06:40 PM   #1
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Location: Oxford, Mich, USA
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Another GeForce FX 5200 Dual head, question - CentOS5.3/KDE, TV + Monitor

Hi - (Long time reader, second time asker...)

Here is my issue. I am working with a Community access TV Station. (Read "Free TV" or "Wayne's World" for the Non US readers.) and we are trying to broadcast from a computer. I, of course, chose linux for the box in question, mostly because it needs to run 99.9999 of the time, and I needed the scriptability.

So, We have a home built quad core w/ 8GB ram and a GeForce FX 5200 for a vid card. It has s-vidio and DVI-I ports. When asked, the relatively clueless vendor promised that the card was dual head capable. (In windows only) but since the FX 5200 was on the HCL, we purchased it. It is now connected to a standard VGA monitor (via a DVI to VGA adapter) and a TV studio monitor (via an s-vidio to RCA adapter that will go straight to an s-video switcher in production.)

I installed the nVidia driver, and tried the dual head settings in the GUI config tool, not so good. (Forgot to save the log.)

Then, after reading the nVidia how-to (and many painful hours of reading, googleing, etc.) I wrote this config.

and got the following log.

What it is doing for real is;

Normal text on start up, through the VGA monitor.
When X starts, the nVidia display starts on the TV monitor and the VGA monitor stops displaying, eventually sleeping.
normal X display starts on the TV monitor.
When I "init 3" display returns to the VGA monitor and stays on the TV monitor.
When I reboot the machine, once the system returns to tty mode, both monitors start and stay that way until X restarts. (Where the VGA monitor goes away again.) So, it really can show both monitors at the same time. (Just not the nVidia driver it would seem.

All of the above leads me to believe that the adapters are not the issue, but instead my incompetence in dual head linux. Truth be told, I have never ever in 10 years of jacking with it, gotten it to work, but this time I really need it.

(Or at least I think I do. See )

the output of /sbin/lspci is;

Thanks for any insight you might have...


Last edited by PaulGraham; 06-20-2009 at 12:08 AM. Reason: New testing...
Old 06-21-2009, 04:00 AM   #2
Registered: Mar 2007
Location: England
Distribution: Arch
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You can manipulate what is shown on each screen with xrandr.

Running "xrandr" will show you the name of each display. I have LVDS and VGA which I will use in these examples.

One off and one on:

xrandr --output VGA --off
xrandr --output LVDS --mode 1024x768

With LVDS on, have VGA display a workspace to the right of LVDS:

xrandr --output VGA --mode 1024x768 --right-of LVDS

"man xrandr" for more information and examples.
Old 06-25-2009, 04:50 PM   #3
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try using nvidia-settings it's a great tool. You can configure crazy configurations with it, for instance dual displays at different resolution which are partially overlapping each other.


dual monitor, nvidia

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