[clug] Modern laptops, nVidia, Optimus and Linux

Andrew Janke a.janke at gmail.com
Wed May 4 18:32:44 MDT 2011

In my case its 1920x1200 + 1600x1200, i know it will drive 2x
1920x1200 but it depends on if you are happy with video quality of
this resolution over a VGA cable.

With a bunch of Xorg trickery I can also add the laptop screen into
the mix but it is definitely unsupported behavior (cant do it with std
nvidia tools) and only works with some versions of the nvidia drivers.
I dont run things like this on a day to day basis as there is usually
video corruption.

You can however have the laptop mirror a portion of one of the other screens.

When i searched a while back i couldnt find anthing to do 3 screens.
There are expensive external boxes that do this. However, your best
bet is to investigate machines with a display port (dells for one).
Apparently you can daisy-chain monitors with these cables.

either that or you could use a dell with a docking station with an
extra card in it or a w series lenovo thinkpad. they apprently can do
this. Pity that it'd be cheaper to just buy two laptops...


On 2011-05-05, Kevin Pulo <kev at pulo.com.au> wrote:
> On Wed, May 04, 2011 at 11:43:17PM +1000, Andrew Janke wrote:
>> I have an ASUS N51VF
>> To be honest, an ASUS probably isn't the best "laptop" out there, I
>> use it as a sometimes mobile desktop replacement. It's permanently
>> plugged into a 27" samsung via HDMI + 21" via VGA and external
>> keyboard + Mouse.
> What resolution are you running these at?  And can it drive the
> laptop's display at the same time (even if at lower res)?
> I'm looking for a new laptop (also more of a mobile desktop,
> specifically back and forth between roughly identical setups at work
> and home), currently I have a dual-head setup with the laptop's 17"
> 1920x1200 which sits next to a 24" 1920x1200, and external keyboard
> and mouse.
> I'd love to have a bit more screen real-estate, and so I'm wondering
> if there are any laptops that can drive 2 external screens (preferably
> both at 1920x1200) *as* *well* *as* the laptop's internal screen.  The
> laptop screen could be at a smaller size and/or lower resolution,
> since it would probably be just for my mail window and other bits and
> pieces.  But it would be great if it wasn't too low res, for those
> times when the laptop is used on its own (however, a small screen
> size, meaning a smaller/lighter laptop overall, would be good).
> Does anyone know if such a thing exists?
> Kev
> --
> Kevin Pulo
> kev at pulo.com.au
> http://www.kev.pulo.com.au/

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