[ubuntu-uk] Dual monitors with independent desktops

Tom Bamford tom at entrepreneuria.co.uk
Fri Feb 15 01:49:46 GMT 2008

Andrew Oakley wrote:
> Rob Beard wrote:
>> Basically what I want to do is send the second monitor output to an LCD 
>> TV (but not have a complete MythTV installation) which I can just play 
>> videos on.
> <snip>
> Then just grab the window you want (eg. MythTV) and drag it off your 
> first monitor and onto your second monitor. For example, if you selected 
> "extend the default screen to the RIGHT" then you just drag the window 
> to the right border and it jumps over to the other monitor.
> Then put the program into fullscreen mode.
> And that's it. "It just works", most of the time. I do this on my laptop 
> quite frequently.
> The only confusion is if you are running Compiz (Advanced Desktop 
> Effects) - you may need to turn off "Edge Flip Move" under "Rotate Cube" 
> to prevent it from simply rotating/switching virtual desktops when you 
> drag a window to the screen edge.
I use Nvidia Twinview for my two monitors and it works great. You should 
be able to do the same with Xinerama. It gives you the glorious ability 
to move windows from one screen to the other, and have your Compiz 
desktop cube pan across both screens as one mega cube. If you make 
Mplayer or gxine etc go fullscreen they only expand to fill the monitor 
they are on, leaving you to use the other screen. VirtualBox also does 
the same in fullscreen mode, which gives me Ubuntu/Gnome in one screen 
and Windows in the other, with the ability to move the mouse from one to 
the other seamlessly. Most applications open up on the screen where the 
cursor is rather than remembering where they were last, so you don't end 
up losing new windows underneath a fullscreen app on the other monitor.

I love it compared to running two X servers, it's more flexible IMO. I'm 
also addicted to Oolite which in this configuration pans across both 
monitors for a mega widescreen cockpit view :-)


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