Ubuntu – 4k Laptop with 1920×1080 external monitor


I just bought a Dell XPS Developer Edition 13 inch. It's awesome, and I love it. However, I experienced the same problems as others when I plugged in my two external monitors that are both 1920×1080. Now I have a tiny workspace on the external monitors, with giant font.

I've seen solutions for this on Gnome, but I haven't tested them because I don't have Gnome. Is there anything I can do on Unity to make this tolerable?

Ubuntu 16.04
Dell XPS 13, Developer Edition
Asus 1080p Monitors

Best Answer

Bit late, but the best solution seems to be not to use Wayland and lower built in display to 1080p. As Xorg is the default on 18.04 anyway we'll go with that.

  1. Connect monitor

  2. Lower built in display to 1920x1080

  3. Set scaling to 100% on both

Tested on driver nvidia-440

When disconnecting the monitor the resolution will set the built in display back to 4k so you shouldn't notice any difference between docked/undocked, except for the obvious loss of quality when watching videos etc (while docked).

This issue doesn't seem to get any better with 19.10 either :(

Related Question