Sunday, November 7, 2010

Netbook screen resolution

I love my Dell Mini 9.

I'm back from UDS in Orlando, and have once again spent a whole week on my Mini 9. It's got a webcam so I can call home, and has bluetooth so I can use an external mouse without plugging in a dongle when the need arises. Although I've tried netbooks with 92% keyboards, I'm not ready to sacrifice portability by adding the extra 2 inches required to fit them. The keyboard on the Mini 9 has the perfect feel for such a small keyboard, and I've gotten quite used to it.

The only thing I can't quite get used to is the native screen resolution: 1024x600 is not a lot of screen real estate to work with.

The other day I was looking at the xrandr documentation, and I noticed it supports screen scaling. I now regularly use the following command:

xrandr --output LVDS1 --scale 1.25x1.25

This scales my 1024x600 netbook screen to 1280x750, which is really cool when trying to view large web pages, or any other application that uses a lot of screen space. The downside of this is a slight blurriness that is, in my opinion, an acceptable trade-off.

Unfortunately it doesn't look like there's a way to set scaling in the GNOME Monitor Preferences tool.


David said...

Oh my...

Thank you sir. This is exactly what i've been looking for!

I created a quick bash script to do all the fun for me, and then placed them as icons on my panel for quick switching.

When i'm using normal resolution, i always want to hide gnome-panel.
This command suffices.

gconftool-2 --set --type boolean /apps/panel/toplevels/top_panel_screen0/auto_hide true

Thanks again!

Janne Morén said...


This is wonderful. I use a "real" laptop with a 12" 1280x800 screen but it's still sometimes really useful to crank up the resolution a bit more - Eclipse comes to mind, or when you use VLC to a larger desktop.

I know having too many rarely used settings around is a bad thing, but this is exactly the kind of cool and useful thing that should be exposed more widely to users. Hiding everything that makes our platform unique and compelling is just doing Linux and GNOME a disservice.

Gustavo Britto H. Azevedo said...

Have any of you used this command, while on dual screen set up?

- I have a dell mini 9, but I use it on dual screen set up with a AOC 22'.

It always bugs me that the monitor on my mini can't keep up with the AOC resolution (even on low resolutions).

I am currently using AOC (1680X1050) and my mini on(1024x576).

With this command, would I be able to make my mini keep up with the AOC monitor?

mdeslaur said...

Apparently, someone has written a GUI for this: