Much ado about scripting, Linux & Eclipse: card subject to change


915resolution + xorg.conf = Intel 82852/855GM @ 1600x1200x60Hz

Last week I ordered a new Sceptre 24" monitor from, and this week it arrived, only a few days later. Zero dead pixels, works perfectly -- and the current website price is 22% more! Timing is everything, apparently.

Of course setting up my laptops to play nice with it was another story, but for my Thinkpad T60p, I've managed to get a single display using aticonfig:

aticonfig --initial=dual-head -f
aticonfig --dtop=horizontal --overlay-on=1 --mode2=1920x1200 \
 --resolution=0,1920x1200,1600x1200,1400x1050,1280x1024,1024x768 \

Granted, I don't have both the laptop and monitor enabled at the moment, but that's probably because I'm trying to push the laptop screen to a res it can't support (1600x1200). I could probably get them to both go to 1400x1050, but so far I'm happy w/ the single screen.

Anyway, the harder project was getting my wife's old R51 to connect to the Sceptre X24, for two reasons: one, its screen is all but dead (still works, but it's as if it's set to a brightness level of 2%); and two, the automatic configuration in Xubuntu kinda sucks for xorg.conf creation.

After a number of searches, attempts, and failures, I finally found a way to push the Intel 82852/855GM (rev 02) card to 1600x1200 at 60Hz. Here's how:

First, install 915resolution 0.5.3-1ubuntu1 from the ubuntu universe repositories. I tried downloading drivers from Intel, but I couldn't compile anything -- xf86-video-intel-2.4.2.tar.bz2, i915Graphics.tar.gz, drm.tar.gz or mesa.tar.gz -- missing dependencies, apparently.

Next, read the README that comes with 915resolution, /usr/share/doc/915resolution/README.Debian. It explains exactly how to use this tool. Here's what I put in my /etc/default/915resolution file:


Next, in your xorg.conf, set the Driver to "i810", set the BusID to the value shown by lspci | grep VGA, set HorizSync & VertRefresh to values that will work for your monitor, and then add Display subsections for all the resolutions you want to try to use.

Section "Device"
       Identifier      "Intel Corporation Mobile Integrated Graphics Controller"
       Driver          "i810"
       BusID           "PCI:0:2:0"
       Option "DevicePresence" "true"
       Option "DRI"      "true"

Section "Monitor"
 Identifier "Configured Monitor"
 ModelName    "Sceptre X24"
        HorizSync    31 - 80
        VertRefresh  55 - 76
        Option      "DPMS" "true"

Section "Screen"
       Identifier      "Default Screen"
       Device          "Intel Corporation Mobile Integrated Graphics Controller"
       Monitor         "Configured Monitor"
       DefaultDepth    16
       SubSection "Display"
               Depth           16
               Modes           "1920x1440_60" "1920x1200_60" "1920x1080_60" "1680x1050_59.883" "1360x768_59.8" "1600x1200_60" 
       SubSection "Display"
               Depth           24
               Modes           "1920x1440_60" "1920x1200_60" "1920x1080_60" "1680x1050_59.883" "1360x768_59.8" "1600x1200_60" 

Note that the most useful thing I managed to find was how to explicitly set display frequencies: for 1600x1200 at 60Hz, use "1600x1200_60". (This was required because xubuntu by default was trying to run at 59Hz and was creating terrible ghosting effects.)

To test out the above configuration, I wrote this little script (based on ideas here):

# start a new X session on head :5, fire an xterm, and 
# launch kruler to measure screen res
# switch between vt sessions with CTRL-ALT-Fx, 
# eg., for vt2, CTRL-ALT-F2.
# I found this new vt with CTRL-ALT-F9
X -novtswitch :5 & xterm -display :5 & kruler -display :5 &

Now, granted, I still can't get 1920x1200x60Hz (the monitor's native resolution), but I may have found a solution: Tritton TRIUV200 See2 Xtreme USB 2.0 to DVI/VGA adapter.

Anyway, using a Kinamax KVM-USB4 USB 4 Port KVM Switch, I've got two laptops sharing the 24" 1600x1200 screen, with room to add up to two more systems. Minimal desktop clutter, maximum productivity.

Now, if I can just figure out a solution to my wife's workspace clutter...