x server crashing - sometimes

Ray Parrish crp at cmc.net
Tue Mar 17 00:26:55 UTC 2009

Stephen wrote:
> Stephen wrote:
>> Dear All
>> Kubuntu 8.10
>> I want to reduce the resolution as a way of improving the graphics and 
>> text size as these are to small.  I have seen these setting in two places:
>> 1) K > System > System Settings > Display
>> 2) K > System > KR and RTray Screen Resize & Rotate
>> When I chose either of these, the server exits to a login screen and I 
>> have to login again.  Odd, as I have used these before.
>> The most recent change I have made was in K > System > System Settings > 
>> Desktop -All Effects tab, where I unticked most of the 3D options and 
>> improved performance.
>> I would also like to reduce colour depth.  When I last looked at the 
>> settings for changing the resolution I did not see anything about 
>> reducing the colour depth.  I have looked around System Settings.
>> Any help appreciated
>> Stephen
> Dear All
> This issue has proved problematic to resolve.  I have tried some
> suggestions about editing /etc/X11/Xorg.conf, but what doesn't crash X
> at start up makes no difference to the display.
> I still have the problems of
> 1) most of the time I cannot access Display or KR and RTray Screen 
> Resize & Rotate.
> 2) When I maximise a window it is too wide for the screen and goes off 
> the right edge so losing the X out icon and other bits
> 3) Windows render slowly
> 4) I cannot control the resolution enough to have text on screen of a
> size that I can read - it is all too small
> 5) When I had a 17inch screen I used a res on 1024 X 768, now I have a
> wide screen 17inch (16/9 ratio), I think I want a res of 1280 X 768.
> But I cannot access the display options to change it.
> I have looked in the BIOS and up to 8MB of memory is allocated to the
> onboard graphics.  The pc has 1GB of RAM.  If I installed a PCI graphics
> card I would not have to make a change in the BIOS as it is already
> configured to select a user installed graphics card if one is installed.
> One of the editions of Linux Format had an article that mentioned
> onboard/Intel graphics are problematic.  Now I am fed up with the problem.
> I want to explore installing a graphics card.  Has any one any 
> recommendations that will allow me to overcome these problems and not 
> have to be fiddled with.
> I appear to have two PCI slots and a very short slot above that - not 
> sure what it is.
> Any recommendations welcomed.
> Stephen

Since you have 1 GB RAM, you have plenty to spare that can be assigned 
to your on board video card's use. You state that the BIOS shows 8 MB's 
currently assigned to the video card.  This is way too low, and you 
should be able to change that setting  right there where it's displayed 
in the BIOS. On my motherboard I have selections that start at 8 MB's, 
and go all the way up to 256 MB's.

Currently I have this set to 64 MB's out of my 512 MB's of available 
system RAM. This setting allows running in the highest graphics mode 
with 3D acceleration, all of the eye candy features of Compiz enabled, 
all with no problems whatsoever.

When I got this computer, it was set to use 128 MB's for  the video card 
and this seemed to work pretty good, but at times programs would gray 
out and be unresponsive for a few seconds up to as much as a minute or 
two. Now that I have reduced the video card to 64 MB's, I no longer have 
the gray out problem.

An easy way to test and change video resolutions is with xvidtune. It 
works in conjunction with a terminal, but is actually a small GUI 
program. You start it from Terminal, and it then uses the terminal 
screen to write modelines fetched from your system or which you create 
with xvidtune to so you can inspect or copy them. On the GUI portion of 
it, there are buttons which allow cycling through your available video 
resolutions in either the up or down direction. The resolution changes 
take place when you press one of these buttons immediately.

xvidtune also presents you with sliders to change the hsyncstart, 
hsyncend, vyncstart, and vsyncend values for the current mode, and a 
Test button to try any changes you make to those settings. xvidtune will 
then warn you if your selections result in an invalid combination.

There are also Apply and Restore buttons which allow you to write your 
changes to the xorg.conf file.

Later, Ray Parrish

Human reviewed index of links about the computer
Poetry from the mind of a Schizophrenic

More information about the ubuntu-users mailing list