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Thread: Changing the primary monitor.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
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    Changing the primary monitor.

    So I decided to switch my desktop to 10.04 Ubuntu, yet not having a checkbox option in the Monitor configuration window to set a primary monitor is baffling.

    Code:
    xrandr --output HDMI1 --primary
    That is all it takes to switch it. I've read around and places have said to add it to some gdm startup script, yet even adding it to my rc.local has no effect on boot. Also, my Login screen has the wrong resolution and is mirroring, yet when I login the resolution and extended desktop works.

    I have an Intel 4 series graphics chip and no xorg.conf (I tried generating and using one with Xorg -configure but when I peeked into the file, it was poorly generated and did nothing for me.)
    ThinkPad R61 14" | Fedora 14 | Core 2 Duo 2.0Ghz | 4GB DDR2 | 64GB SSD

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Philadelphia, PA
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    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Bump please?
    ThinkPad R61 14" | Fedora 14 | Core 2 Duo 2.0Ghz | 4GB DDR2 | 64GB SSD

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
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    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Thanks everyone, you've all been very helpful. I'm just gonna figure out the script thing myself and join the NotifyOSD development team to fix the non-customizable way notifications are handled in Ubuntu. The dual monitor support is really terrible.
    ThinkPad R61 14" | Fedora 14 | Core 2 Duo 2.0Ghz | 4GB DDR2 | 64GB SSD

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Beans
    3
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Having the same issue. Primary reason I upgraded to 10.04. I will live with the rest of the bugs since this works but I do need to have my monitor to be the primary with the menu's and all and have the TV be my extended secondary one. I will continue to read as well

    I have an Nvidia graphics card and no xorg.conf

    Thanks I am also not very experienced.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Beans
    6
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    In "Monitor Preferences" it seems that display on the left is considered as primary. So, if you want extended setup ("Same image in all monitors" disabled), turn "Off" display on the left with "On" "Off" radio, after you apply, display on the right will become primary instead of extended. Now drag left display to right and turn it "On", and it will be extended now.

    So, basically the display you want to be primary needs to be one the left side, and this only works if you drag displays while the one you want to be extended aka secondary is turned off.

    This is tested on ubuntu 10.04 x86_64 intel x4500mhd with external display attached to HDMI, works fine, and configuration is saved, and will be restored on reboot, and on disconnecting/reconnecting monitors.
    Last edited by neverland888; June 6th, 2010 at 11:08 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Outopia
    Beans
    154
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Quote Originally Posted by gmunozy2k View Post
    Having the same issue. Primary reason I upgraded to 10.04. I will live with the rest of the bugs since this works but I do need to have my monitor to be the primary with the menu's and all and have the TV be my extended secondary one. I will continue to read as well

    I have an Nvidia graphics card and no xorg.conf

    Thanks I am also not very experienced.
    Go to System-->Administration
    Click on "NVIDIA Server Settings"
    Click on "X Server Display Configuration"

    You should see both of your screens there

    Click on the "Configure" button next to "Configuration"
    Select "Twinview"
    Click "Apply"

    Move the pictures of the two screens to the layout you want.
    Click the image of your computer monitor and check the block next to "Make this the primary display for the X screen". Click on "Apply" then "Quit".

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Beans
    1

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    What I did was ...

    System => Preferences => Startup Applications
    Click Add
    Name: XRANDR
    Command: xrandr --output VGA1 --primary


    This runs xrandr when you log in and sets the VGA to the primary monitor. Works well for me, even if its a hack.

    Note this assumes VGA1 = your vga card and the laptop is something else. Run xrandr by itself to get an output of what's what.

    HTH

    Bryan

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    SoCal
    Beans
    306

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    This is awesome. I spent about an hour trying to figure out why my menus are on the wrong screen. Then was stunned to not have an xorg.conf... Finding out about xrandr is awesome.

    Let's add some google-able keywords so maybe others will find this:
    Dual head gnome menu on wrong monitor.
    New windows start on wrong monitor with dual monitors.

    I have added xrandr to my startup applications and while I haven't tested it, I'm sure it will work... I've put goofy scripts in there before.


    Thanks,
    Chris
    Kinda lost my love for ubuntu, more changey than Vista or Win8
    So LMDE it is for me until there's a way to update my distro and not
    have everything disappear.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Beans
    39

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Continue to have this problem - for a decade or more really, but for today, I would settle to just have the nvidia-setting launch properly - at this point it's telling me:

    You do not appear to be using the NVIDIA X driver. Please edit your X configuration file (just run `nvidia-xconfig` as root), and restart the X server.

    I do that, but nothing changes.

    I also find it hard to believe that I would use the xrandr, at least as shown in this thread, because both my outputs are dvi...am I wrong there?

    Any guidance appreciated.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Denmark
    Beans
    50
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Changing the primary monitor.

    Quote Originally Posted by perceptum View Post
    What I did was ...
    Command: xrandr --output VGA1 --primary
    Thanks!!I have struggled with this since 8.04 and now finally its over

    Gotta love the forum

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