TwinView, openSUSE and the NVidia driver

A week ago, I brought 37″ LG Led TV for my living room. It’s cheap and has a lot of features. After buying 10 meters of DVI to HDMI cable, the TV was connected to my development machine, which also happens to be in my living room. Great to watch HD movies late at night, or playing games when you fell like not doing anything.

My development PC is running openSUSE 11.4 and has nVidia GeForce 8600 GT card. Old but perfectly good for my needs. I’m using nVidia proprietary driver, and a great tool called nVidia X Server Settings that comes with it.

Here is how to enable dual monitor setup and make your changes permanent:

Start “nVidia X Server Settings” and select “X Server Display Configuration“. There you should see your monitors (in my case my primary monitor and TV). One of them will be disabled. Select the disabled monitor and click “Configure…“. From the “Configure Display Device” dialog choose “TwinView” option. Click “Ok” Change the display resolution and Hz if you like. Select “Make this the primary display for the X screen.” if you like your selection to be the primary monitor. Click “Apply”. Play with the options until you are happy with the results, but don’t close the nVidia tool.

To make your changes permanent, start a terminal, become root user and “cd” to “/etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/“. Open “50-screen.conf“. From the nVidia tool select “Save to X Configuration File” and then “Show Preview“. Scroll to the section named “Screen” and copy-paste the tree “Option” lines in “50-screen.conf” after the “Monitor” directive. Save the file, close the nVidia tool and log out. Your X server should restart, and your settings apply ed automatically.

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