Ubuntu – Getting dual monitors to work on 11.10


I have two portrait mode monitors (the same model but one plugged in digitally, one analog). Both worked fine (as one big visual space) when I was on Maverick Meerkat.

When I installed 11.10 I only see one monitor working and it happens to be the digital one.

In gksu nvidia-settings I do not see any way to enable the other monitor.

In settings/displays only one monitor is shown and it is called "unknown", the "detect" button does nothing when clicked, the mirror setting is greyed out, and the orientation is "normal" and clicking it does not offer any other choices such as "portrait".

The motherboard is a Gigabyte GA MA 770 UD3.

Best Answer

  • I also had some issues setting up dual monitors. Fortunately, the following procedure worked for me:

    1. Open nvidia-settings by searching for nvidia in the Dash, or run the command gksudo nvidia-settings in the Terminal. Note not to press the apply button.
    2. Under 'Xserver Display Configuration' select TwinView and configure the settings for the monitors to your liking.
    3. Click 'Save to X Configuration File' and an error message should appear. Click OK.
    4. In the next dialog box click the button to 'Show Preview'.
    5. Leave the preview window open and open a Terminal. Run the following commands in the Terminal to back up your xorg.conf file and open the original file in a test editor. If something goes wrong, just revert to your backed up xorg.conf.

      sudo cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.bak

      gksudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf`

    6. Copy the text from the nvidia-settings preview window into the xorg.conf file. Save the xorg.conf file and close gedit. Click 'Cancel' to close the nvidia-settings preview window. Then click 'Quit' to exit completely out of nvidia-settings without applying or saving any data.

    7. Restart your computer. If all went well, the two monitors should work together.

    When I was dealing with this problem, the original text in the xorg.conf file only had a section labeled "Device".

    The text pasted from the nvidia settings creates this section for you. Therefore, you should transfer what was in the original device section to the new device section.

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