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Setting up dual-monitor-fu in FVWM/TwinView
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ExecutorElassus
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PostPosted: Wed May 03, 2017 8:39 pm    Post subject: Setting up dual-monitor-fu in FVWM/TwinView Reply with quote

Hi all,

so, I just took the plunge and ordered a second monitor for my main box at home. The GPU is a(n old-ish) nVidia GTX 580 with dual DVI-out. The monitors are both 1920x1200, and they're going to be mounted on arms.

One of my goals here is to be able to set a number of different arrangements, as follows:

both monitors side-by-side, landscape, as a single desktop (thus 3840x1200)
left monitor portrait (rotated 90° CW), right monitor landscape, I'm guessing thus two separate desktops (but can I move the mouse between them?)
left monitor landscape, right monitor portrait (90° CCW)
both monitors portrait (left 90°CW, right 90°CCW), as a single desktop (thus 2400x1920)
both monitors landscape, right monitor above the left (rotated 180°CCW), single desktop (thus 1920x2400)

As noted, I use FVWM, which means I could (theoretically) create some buttons that execute the necessary lines of code to do the Xrandr stuff. I would also like to switch the wallpapers to match whatever arrangement I have, and reposition the various FVWM applets (the ButtonsBar, IconMan, etc.) so that they are in analogous locations in the various configurations.

My questions are these:

are all these different configurations possible without restarting X?
can they be controlled via a single (albeit multipart) command, which I might trigger with a button-click?
do any of you have experience setting something like this up with nVidia's TwinView? How well does it work? Are there issues?

Thanks in advance for the help,

EE
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ExecutorElassus
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UPDATE: So now I have the second monitor hooked up (excursus: holy crap is having two monitors, like, totally sweet), and I have a couple updates:

1) early on, FVWM did a weird thing where the ButtonsBar app on one or the other screen would go to 100% CPU and freeze. Likewise, the root menu (that appears when left-clicking the desktop background) would also stop working. This, of course, made it difficult to log out of FVWM, or to bring up apps like consoles. Likewise, video playback programs like smplayer or vlc were acting weird (VLC would put the bottom of the window in fullscreen mode below the bottom edge of the monitor, making the controls unreachable) and failing to prevent xscreensaver from kicking in. I haven't seen any of this happen lately (perhaps because I rebooted?) but nevertheless am somewhat concerned about FVWM running under a dualhead setup. Is there something I should be doing here to maintain stability?

2) I figured out I can use XRandR to rotate the screen around (specifically, the command 'xrandr --screen 1 --output DVI-I-2 --auto --rotate right' will rotate the second screen 90° CCW, for example) as needed. So, changing the "--screen," "--rotate," and "--output" values, I can make various command strings to rotate one or the other monitor. So that part is resolved.

I would thus like to refine my question to address the following questions, which remain for me:

a) I would like, in the same command, to reposition the four apps/modules that appear on the desktop--conky, ButtonBar, IconMan, and Desker Panel--so that they are in roughly the same relative locations (namely, in the four corners) of the new screen geometry. Are there CLI commands I can use to do this?

b) I would like to move any windows that might fall outside the new screen geometry so that they are reachable. Is there some generic command for this?

c) is there a way, using the above or some other (set of) commands, to create a single logical screen geometry that covers both monitors? Such that I can drag windows across from one to the other, and (what is, for me, obviously the most important thing) to be able to play my sweet computer game on an extra-widescreen format?

Thanks again for the help.

Cheers,

EE
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