Display problem with Kubuntu 10.10

pkaplan1 at comcast.net pkaplan1 at comcast.net
Tue Oct 19 21:19:52 UTC 2010

I have Thinkpad T400 with Intel graphics running kde4.5.2 and kubuntu 10.10 with an external monitor attached. When the external monitor is attached, I have a single desktop spanning both monitors. I can also run scripts to turn on and off the signal to the external monitor so that when it is off all Desktop contents condense to the single internal laptop monitor...So far so good. 

However, when I boot the computer without the external monitor attached the desktop is unusable. The monitor shows the folderview activity that is normally displayed on the external monitor, none of the vertical panels and no open applications. When I open apps, a task manager on a horizontal panel shows that the apps are open, but they are never visible on the screen. If I attempt to add a panel, it displays for a few seconds and then disappears, probably to the same place the open apps live (if I then reboot with the external monitor the newly added panel appears on laptop monitor). KDM however displays the login dialog correctly without an external monitor. 

The only way I've found to resolve the situation is to delete ~/.kde each time I login without the external monitor. In other words, I can configure the computer to display properly either with an external monitor or without an external monitor, but not for both situations. BIG PROBLEM! 

I've never seen this behavior with the same hardware through kubuntu 10.04 and kde4.5.1. I'm guessing there's something funky with X in 10.10 but I have no idea what the problem is or how to configure my way out of the problem. 

Has anyone seen anything like this? Any suggestions? 
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