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Thread: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    7
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Question Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Fresh install of 10.10.

    Okay, I have two nVidia cards that both support two monitors.

    If I only activate one card and two monitors. I can activate TwinView across those monitors (using "NVidia X Server Settings") and everything works as expected. I have hardware acceleration on both monitors. Panels are only across one monitor. Maximize window maximizes to one monitor. New windows open on one monitor, not straddling both.

    Problem comes in when I try to activate the second card and third screen.

    If I don't enable Xinerama, I can't drag windows to and from this monitor.

    As soon as I activate the second card (with or without Xinerama) I lose the proper maximize window functionality in the first two monitors. A maximize now goes across both monitors.

    I could turn off twinview and only use Xinerama, but then I will lose hardware acceleration on one of the monitors (second monitor of the primary card).

    I'd like:
    • All Monitors enabled with hardware acceleration
    • Ability to drag windows between all monitors
    • Maximize window to maximize to current monitor only
    • panels to stretch across one monitor only


    A perfect world would also include the bottom "task panel" to only list windows that are on "it's screen."

    Can this be done? I've spent about four hours on it so far.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Portsmouth, UK
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    Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Nvidia refer to Twinview as:

    TwinView is a mode of operation where two display devices...
    So I don't know if it supports more than two devices; I'm not sure how one would configure xorg.conf's screen section to refer to two devices. An option might be to configure one card to host two monitors using twinview, and the second card to have its own instance. You wouldn't be able to drag windows from it to the other two, so it's hardly what you're after, but it's all I can think of.

    EDIT: Have you looked into xrandr? That might provide the functionality you're after; I believe that Xinerama has been deprecated in its favour.
    Last edited by Grenage; March 9th, 2011 at 06:21 PM. Reason: Additional thought.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Quote Originally Posted by Grenage View Post
    Nvidia refer to Twinview as:


    EDIT: Have you looked into xrandr? That might provide the functionality you're after; I believe that Xinerama has been deprecated in its favour.
    No, I haven't. Does xrandr support nvidia with hardware acceleration on all monitors? :: quick, to the google, batman :: (bbiab)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Bryan, I've been struggling with this same problem for a long time. Have you made any progress?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    No. I use TwinView between two monitors on the same card, and use Xinerama to extend my desktop to the one monitor on the second card.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Bryan76, would you mind posting your xorg.conf file?

    I'm trying to set up something very similar.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Code:
    # nvidia-settings: X configuration file generated by nvidia-settings
    # nvidia-settings:  version 260.19.06  (buildd@yellow)  Mon Oct  4 15:59:51 UTC 2010
    
    
    Section "ServerLayout"
    
    # Removed Option "Xinerama" "0"
    # Removed Option "Xinerama" "1"
    # Removed Option "Xinerama" "0"
    # Removed Option "Xinerama" "1"
    # Removed Option "Xinerama" "0"
        Identifier     "Layout0"
        Screen      0  "Screen0" 1680 0
        Screen      1  "Screen1" LeftOf "Screen0"
        InputDevice    "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
        InputDevice    "Mouse0" "CorePointer"
        Option         "Xinerama" "1"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Files"
    EndSection
    
    Section "InputDevice"
    
        # generated from default
        Identifier     "Mouse0"
        Driver         "mouse"
        Option         "Protocol" "auto"
        Option         "Device" "/dev/psaux"
        Option         "Emulate3Buttons" "no"
        Option         "ZAxisMapping" "4 5"
    EndSection
    
    Section "InputDevice"
    
        # generated from default
        Identifier     "Keyboard0"
        Driver         "kbd"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
    
        # HorizSync source: edid, VertRefresh source: edid
        Identifier     "Monitor0"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "DELL P2210"
        HorizSync       30.0 - 83.0
        VertRefresh     56.0 - 75.0
        Option         "DPMS"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
    
        # HorizSync source: edid, VertRefresh source: edid
        Identifier     "Monitor1"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "DELL E228WFP"
        HorizSync       30.0 - 83.0
        VertRefresh     56.0 - 75.0
        Option         "DPMS"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
    
        # HorizSync source: edid, VertRefresh source: edid
        Identifier     "Monitor2"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "DELL P2210"
        HorizSync       30.0 - 83.0
        VertRefresh     56.0 - 75.0
        Option         "DPMS"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device0"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "Quadro FX 580"
        BusID          "PCI:3:0:0"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device1"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "Quadro FX 580"
        BusID          "PCI:4:0:0"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device2"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "Quadro FX 580"
        BusID          "PCI:4:0:0"
        Screen          1
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
    
    # Removed Option "TwinView" "0"
    # Removed Option "metamodes" "nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        Identifier     "Screen0"
        Device         "Device0"
        Monitor        "Monitor0"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "TwinView" "1"
        Option         "TwinViewXineramaInfoOrder" "DFP-1"
        Option         "metamodes" "DFP-1: nvidia-auto-select +0+0, DFP-2: nvidia-auto-select +1680+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
            Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
    
    # Removed Option "TwinView" "0"
    # Removed Option "metamodes" "DFP-1: nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
    # Removed Option "TwinView" "1"
    # Removed Option "metamodes" "DFP-1: nvidia-auto-select +0+0, DFP-2: nvidia-auto-select +1680+0"
    # Removed Option "metamodes" "DFP-1: nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        Identifier     "Screen1"
        Device         "Device1"
        Monitor        "Monitor1"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "TwinViewXineramaInfoOrder" "DFP-1"
        Option         "TwinView" "0"
        Option         "metamodes" "nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
            Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
        Identifier     "Screen2"
        Device         "Device2"
        Monitor        "Monitor2"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "TwinView" "0"
        Option         "metamodes" "DFP-2: nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
            Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection
    Note, I have not been able to get this to work with Natty 11.04. Not using Unity or Gnome. As soon as I enable Xinerama to try to spread my desktop across more than two monitors things start to break.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Beans
    28

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    I do not know if this will help, but here is my xorg.conf file.
    I have mine set up with a #0" in the center and 20" side monitors rotated.
    I enjoy this setups since I can open up windows on any of the monitors.
    I do NOT like the config because I cannot move windows from one screen to another, but at least I can use all of my real estate with gnome, but not if I use Unity.

    I would also love any suggestions of what to try in order to get it to all work as one giant screen.

    Code:
    # nvidia-settings: X configuration file generated by nvidia-settings
    # nvidia-settings:  version 260.19.06  (buildd@yellow)  Mon Oct  4 15:59:51 UTC 2010
    
    Section "ServerLayout"
    
    # commented out by update-manager, HAL is now used and auto-detects devices
    # Keyboard settings are now read from /etc/default/console-setup
    #    InputDevice    "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
    #    InputDevice    "Mouse0" "CorePointer"
    
        Identifier     "Layout0"
        Screen      0  "Screen0" 0 0
        Screen      1  "Screen1" LeftOf "Screen0"	
        Screen      2  "Screen2" RightOf "Screen0"
        Option         "Xinerama" "0"
    EndSection
    
    
    Section "Module"
        Load           "glx"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Files"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
        Identifier     "Monitor0"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "DELL U3011"
        HorizSync       29.0 - 113.0
        VertRefresh     49.0 - 86.0
        Option         "DPMS"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
        Identifier     "Monitor1"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "Acer G205HV"
        HorizSync       31.0 - 83.0
        VertRefresh     56.0 - 76.0
    EndSection
    
    Section "Monitor"
        Identifier     "Monitor2"
        VendorName     "Unknown"
        ModelName      "Acer G205HV"
        HorizSync       31.0 - 83.0
        VertRefresh     56.0 - 76.0
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device0"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "GeForce GTX 580"
        Option         "NoLogo" "True"
        BusID          "PCI:3:0:0"
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device1"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "GeForce GTX 460"
        BusID          "PCI:4:0:0"
        Screen          0
    EndSection
    
    Section "Device"
        Identifier     "Device2"
        Driver         "nvidia"
        VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
        BoardName      "GeForce GTX 275"
        BusID          "PCI:4:0:0"
        Screen          1
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
        Identifier     "Screen0"
        Device         "Device0"
        Monitor        "Monitor0"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "TwinViewXineramaInfoOrder" "DFP-1"
        Option         "TwinView" "0"
        Option         "metamodes" "nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
        Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
        Identifier     "Screen1"
        Device         "Device1"
        Monitor        "Monitor1"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "Rotate" "CCW"
        Option         "TwinView" "0"
        Option         "metamodes" "DFP-1: nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
            Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection
    
    Section "Screen"
        Identifier     "Screen2"
        Device         "Device2"
        Monitor        "Monitor2"
        DefaultDepth    24
        Option         "Rotate" "CW"
        Option         "TwinView" "0"
        Option         "metamodes" "DFP-0: nvidia-auto-select +0+0"
        SubSection     "Display"
            Depth       24
        EndSubSection
    EndSection

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Beans
    1

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Yes, I dont understand why NVIDIA sucks so much with their multi-monitor support. Have been researching for some time and no solution. Disappointed.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Beans
    4

    Re: Two nVidia Cards / Three Monitors / TwinView Xinerama

    Looks like our posts are almost identical.. You posted yours just as I was writing mine: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1787311

    I dont think this has anything todo with what kind of graphics card you have, its a generic triple monitor issue or xinerama issue.

    Only hint I found so far was that the screen 0 had to be the primary device, I tried that and had no luck.

    This worked flawlessly with ubuntu 10. Used the nvidia configuration utility there as well, and it generated everything just fine.

    I dont have my old xorg.conf, but my guess is the nvidia utility is generating the same output, but xinerma and X have changed.

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