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Thread: SISM650 Split Screen question for my laptop

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    SISM650 Split Screen question for my laptop

    Hey guys,

    This is my first post WOOT. anyway now back to the question at hand. I have recently moved from Windows to UBUNTU so im very new to linux(I must say im really happy with the change) and in windows I used to use split screens for development. The problem I have now in UBUNTU is I have no idea of how to set up split screens. I can however give you a breakdown of my system which I hope will result in you being able to help me out.

    lspci | grep VGA
    01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] 65x/M650/740 PCI/AGP VGA Display Adapter
    xorg.conf looks like this
    # xorg.conf (X.Org X Window System server configuration file)
    # This file was generated by dexconf, the Debian X Configuration tool, using
    # values from the debconf database.
    # Edit this file with caution, and see the xorg.conf manual page.
    # (Type "man xorg.conf" at the shell prompt.)
    # This file is automatically updated on xserver-xorg package upgrades *only*
    # if it has not been modified since the last upgrade of the xserver-xorg
    # package.
    # If you have edited this file but would like it to be automatically updated
    # again, run the following command:
    # sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg

    Section "InputDevice"
    Identifier "Generic Keyboard"
    Driver "kbd"
    Option "XkbRules" "xorg"
    Option "XkbModel" "pc105"
    Option "XkbLayout" "us"

    Section "InputDevice"
    Identifier "Configured Mouse"
    Driver "mouse"
    Option "CorePointer"

    Section "InputDevice"
    Identifier "Synaptics Touchpad"
    Driver "synaptics"
    Option "SendCoreEvents" "true"
    Option "Device" "/dev/psaux"
    Option "Protocol" "auto-dev"
    Option "HorizEdgeScroll" "0"

    Section "Device"
    Identifier "Configured Video Device"
    Option "UseFBDev" "true"

    Section "Monitor"
    Identifier "Configured Monitor"

    Section "Screen"
    Identifier "Default Screen"
    Monitor "Configured Monitor"
    Device "Configured Video Device"

    Section "ServerLayout"
    Identifier "Default Layout"
    Screen "Default Screen"
    InputDevice "Synaptics Touchpad"
    as you can see I have the sis driver installed and my laptop has the M650 graphics chip. Anyone got some ideas on how I can set up split screens on my system ?

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: SISM650 Split Screen question for my laptop


    You are in the same position as myself. I have installed Ubuntu Hardy on a Fujitsu amilo laptop having an M650. What I could do in XP with 2 Monitors (LCD Panel + External) I cannot do in Ubuntu.

    There is a SIS driver available from Mr. Wnischhofer an absolute SIS expert. This driver is also shipped with the latest Ubuntu versions. Here is the link to Mr. Wninischhofers site.

    The problem that I have, is that X especially xorg.conf has so developed that I cannot establish a link between the examples from Mr. W and my config file. I am unfortunately not experienced enough in Linux to experiment. I have registered on to the forum that Mr. W runs, but have not so far received an authorization mail, I do hope that he is still occasionally having a look at his forum. Also see my post to this problem (here) and you will see my config and log files from X and can compare them to your own (very similar).

    I am thinking of simply activating the SIS driver from Mr. W by including the device = "sis" in my config file along with the activation of his control programme SiSCtrl which installed and compiled as described. The SiS driver being present in my system.

    I do not know how to back up my present X configuration (apart form making a copy of xorg.conf), I certainly do not want to reinstall my otherwise beautifully configured and running Ubuntu.

    Maybe after reading the very comprehensive info supplied by Mr. Winischhofer you have a better idea than myself. I do hope that the above link will be of help, if so do let me know how you have got along. Thanks.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Euphorion; June 12th, 2008 at 06:21 PM.
    Kind regards Euphorion

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Talking Re: SISM650 Split Screen question for my laptop


    I have got my System working with the SIS Driver kindly supplied by Mr. Winischhofer. What I did was the following:

    As mentioned in my reply and post from 2 days ago I installed the utility SisCtrl from Mr. Winischhofers Site. See the link in my first post. It installs exactly as described and advertised. Check that it works by opening a terminal and typing sysctrl,

    $ sysctrl

    it will reply with a message telling you what lines to add to your xorg.conf file to enable it. Note these instructions carefully you will need them below.

    Open a terminal with administrator rights. Note $ is the end of the system prompt and need not be entered
    $ cd /etc/X11
    $ cp xorg.conf xorg_backup.conf (just to be on the safe side)
    $ nano xorg.conf

    scroll down to the Section "Device" and underneath Identifier add the following lines
    Device "sis"
    Option "EnableSiSCtrl" "yes"

    you can if you want, format the lines in a pretty manner !! check very carefully what you have written so that it matches the above and the guide lines from Mr. W. see his example xorg.conf simple in his download section.

    then press Ctrl+o for write out. Accept the filename xorg.conf with return
    then press Ctrl+x to exit nano

    I then rebooted my system and it came up fine. I then opened a terminal with administrator rights and ran sisctrl (note the lower case writing).

    $ sysctrl

    Go through the various tabs in sisctrl and you will see all info regarding your setup. Now comes the good news. Open the tab "Current", in the window you will see your current configuration.

    Now in order to set up a desktop accross both monitors do the following:
    Click the box "Show hints" so that it is checked.
    Click the radio button "Dual Head"

    In the window above you will find all the information required to set up your xorg.conf file.

    Mark this text with using your mouse, and copy it to clipboard (Ctrl+C) make sure that you have marked all lines !!!
    Then open an editor (Applications-> Accessories-> Text Editor and Paste the instructions there in.

    VERY IMPORTANT read the sections carefully and replace the words "Identifier" with the real identifier names used in your xorg.conf. Do read the comments in the lines telling you to insert your identifiers, this is very important. Mine are for Device "Configured Video Device" and for the Monitor "Configured Monitor". This is not all that difficult to figure out and if you want, you can use names of your choice like "Tom" and "****" you must ensure that the references are consistent.

    Now you can open your xorg.conf file in a seperate editor, at best from the above mentioned terminal with admi rights, type

    $ gedit

    this will start a gnome editor. Place the two editors side by side and copy/paste the relevent sections into xorg.conf being sure to put them in the right places. The Stuff concerning brightness and modifying the ~/.xsession or ~/.xinitrc file I have ignored for the moment, you can always adjust the brightness using the controls on the front panels of the monitors, my first concern is to get things working. I opted for the Xinerama mode of operation, this means having the desktop stretched across both monitors and I can move the mouse across both monitors. This is also best done with both monitors having the same resolotion.

    So I included the line Option "Xinerama" "on" in the xorg.conf

    Having checked and double checked that everything is correct, save your xorg.conf and either restart X-Windows (if you know how, I hav'nt found out how to do that yet) or reboot your system. It then comes up and does just that what we wanted in the first place.

    NOTE: I recommend the use of Xinerama and not the native dual head. Dual head installs two fully sepetate monitors using two X-Sessions. You CANNOT move your mouse accros the two screens from left to right and right to left. Your software must support this mode. The only software that I have that supports this, is the fantastic video editor Cinerella, here in Preferences you can place the composer screen on the second monitor. I don't recommend using SIS graphics chips for video work, use something more powerfull and OpenGL 2.0 compatible from nVidia or ATI.

    Xinerama on 2 Monitors with differant resolutions is not very good I find it better to use the same resolution, so if the Laptop Screen is the limiting factor, live with it.

    Thats all for now, try it out and I hope that it will also work for your system and those of others having SIS graphics cards/chips.

    When I bought my new laptop I made sure that it did not have a SIS chip. Ubuntu Hardy configures ATI correctly. Install Ubuntu Hardy, ensure that you have an Internet connection, and that the automatic updating is active and that you allow software updates and that in System->Administration->Software Sources you allow proprietry drivers. Then wait a while, in the launcher panel you will see an Icon inviting you to install the ATI driver for your card. Accept this and install. Then start Applications->Add/Remove and search for the ATI Catalyst Control Center and install this, then with this utitlity you can set up your card and Xinerama directly using this tool no editing of xorg.conf is required. I belive and have read that a similar procedure is available for nVidia.
    Kind regards Euphorion


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